It was a midwinter snowstorm that truly made 120 Evanston a rock-star house. But first, there was the porch-sit strategy.
Housemates Linda Bowman Kelly ’78 and Kathy Moeder-Christensen ’78 met as cheerleaders for the junior varsity basketball team, while Debbie DeCurtins Townson ’78, Beth Perry Wright ’78 and Barb Haber Hawks ’79 were Flyerettes.
The five moved into 120 Evanston, found by Kelly, in 1976.
“I remember the upstairs consisted of two small bedrooms with bunk beds, one closet-size bedroom and one small bathroom,” Moeder-Christensen said.
With only one bathroom to five girls, Moeder-Christensen said she still wonders how they managed it. Though 120 Evanston is now University-owned, she remembers it as one of the nicest landlord houses to live in off campus. Because
of this, they were “particular” about it; so they made friends with the neighbors when it came to porch-sitting.
“We visited 460 Lowes — a.k.a. ‘The Upper Lowes Gang’ — to sit on their big porch,” she said. “It just so happened that they didn’t mind us visiting. Now, that’s a house with some stories.”
One that Moeder-Christensen and Kelly will never forget is the Blizzard of ’78. Students living on Evanston had to walk to class by maneuvering over a hill and crossing railroad tracks, which no longer exist but at the time were treacherous in
“We had so much snow that winter, and when the big storm hit, classes were cancelled and we spent the day making a huge snowman with our friends on Lowes,” she said. She recalls that 120 Evanston was one of the only houses in the area
that had heat, thanks to their landlord.
“We were nice and toasty while everyone else was freezing,” she said. “[It’s] one of my fondest memories.”
Like many Flyers now in the student neighborhoods, the 120 Evanston women remember their house and neighbors affectionately, and wonder what the houses are like today.
“If walls could talk,” said Moeder-Christensen.
Take a tour of this house with today’s residents.No Comments
From patriotic flags to UD-themed coffee break furniture, the residents of 1518 Frericks know how to make their house a home.No Comments
The residents of 120 Evanston have wildly different majors and schedules, but they still make time to lose intramural baseball and share midnight snacks together.
Read about the residents who lived there in 1978.No Comments
The residents of 434 Lowes celebrate their last semester as the “kings of the castle” living on one of the highest points of Lowes Street.
Read about the residents who lived there in 1989.
Location and size are the features that attracted this group of seniors to 221 Kiefaber. Take a look inside to see how these six residents are spending their time and making this house into a home.No Comments
The average time for a student to live in the student neighborhood is one year. These spirited ladies of 434 Lowes did it for three.
Suzanne Dumon Ward, Eileen Reilly Phelps, Ann Bretz Boone, Lori Harris Tevis and Cathy Dalsaso Bottema, all 1989 graduates, first rented the home from a landlord their sophomore year, and then UD purchased the house.
“They contacted us and said, ‘You guys get first dibs,’” Ward said. “Living in the Ghetto again? Heck, yeah.”
The five were constantly together, from watching thirtysomething to hitting Brown Street on weekends. They even joined the first national sorority on campus, Alpha Phi, together.
“They were only taking 20 girls, so we were all thinking … there’s no way five of us from the same house were going to get in,” Phelps said.
The 434 Lowes residents had driven to Detroit to attend a Genesis concert the night that bids were sent out, and when they returned, the letters were waiting for them in the mailbox.
“On the way home there was tension in the car,” Ward said. “But we opened the mailbox, and we all got in.”
Having an open-door policy and being buddies with all of the neighbors turned out to be both the best and the worst combination: lots of activity, lots of fun, lots of stolen food.
“We were always friends with our neighbors every year. And we never locked our door, in all three years. We just knew it was home,” Phelps said.
Stepping onto campus exactly 25 years later, the roommates insist nothing has changed.
“We have a strong bond,” Boone said. “It’s instant comfort, lasting friendship and spirit that only people who went to UD would know.”
Take a tour of this house with today’s residents.No Comments
It was all fun and games until someone stole their porch swing. Then, the 1987-88 residents of 418 Stonemill declared war.
Amy Fister-Lottes ’88 says her fondest campus memories took place on that Stonemill porch. “I miss the camaraderie of living with e other girls who were also great friends,” she said. “I miss hanging out on our front porch swing, laying out in the backyard and hosting BBQs for friends.”
Housemate Theresa Quirk Meyers ’88 agreed. “The best part of being at that house — and being a part of UD — was making lifelong friendships,” she said.
Then, there was the War of 1987. “My house-mate stole a life-size Bartles & Jaymes cutout from the guys at 35 Evanston, then put it in our attic window so they would see it on their way to base-ball practice,” Fister-Lottes recalled. “They retaliat-ed by stealing our porch swing in the middle of the night — and hanging it on the side of their house, just out of reach. We answered by stealing their Hulk Hogan action figure.”
A truce was called, and all belongings were returned during a “peace summit,” Fister-Lottes said.
The jokes continued, though. Fister-Lottes remembers how she and her roommates would laugh nonstop during daily soap opera marathons, family dinners, girls’ nights out and Friday afternoons on the porch spent greeting fellow students on their way home from class.
“I’d describe our house as old-fashioned, with a creepy basement and even creepier attic. There was an odd-looking clawfoot tub that had been convert-ed into a shower, and one room was always too hot in the summer but too cold in the winter,” Fister-Lottes remembered.
Despite the quirks, she’d pick it again.
“If I were a current student, I would go back to 418 Stonemill,” she said. “It was great being near campus, but also close to everything else, while not being right in the middle of the Ghetto. It was a bit quieter on Stonemill, but easy to get to the action.”
Take a visit through the house with today’s residents.No Comments
Six men spent the 2013-14 academic year living at 118 Stonemill, a Fellow house. The residence came complete with a nice front porch and a few quirks they’ve grown to love — or at least live with.
Read about the residents who lived there in 1987-88.
(Click the photo above for all 11 images.)No Comments
That’s what you could find seniors Danny Braner, Matt DeSapri, Andrew Gibson, Dan Hawks, Mike Molnar and Matt Wills playing at 118 Lawnview Ave.
“Basically, we tried to see how long we could go piling up trash in our kitchen garbage can,” Gibson ’08 explained. “The person who ended up knocking trash over while trying to pile their trash on had to take it out to the dumpster. This game really taught us some important life lessons, like don’t play Trash Jenga.”
Instead, the crew recommended video games.
Wills ’09 said Guitar Hero was a big draw, and it would pack players in front of their old-style, thick, 60- inch television squeezed into their small living room — which was right next to Wills’ bedroom. The lesson? Sleep when you can.
The house had four bedrooms and only one bathroom for six men, but Molnar picked it as among the best in the housing lottery. It was an especially easy walk to class for Wills, an industrial engineering technology major with classes in Kettering Labs; he is now a manager of construction projects in Baltimore.
Another draw: the porch.
“It got the job done,” said Braner ’08, an underwriter with Cincinnati Insurance. It attracted a crowd on a nice day and, in the fall, it was the place for carving pumpkins. Students knew 118 Lawnview as the “crab house” for the bright yellow flag emblazoned with a red crab that hung from the porch roof.
The house had another distinctive feature. “Behind our house, there was a little attached storage area that really served no purpose,” Gibson said. “People, apparently, thought we were still living in the early 1900s and had an outhouse.”
The shed and basement were too creepy for Braner, but he did explore the attic once and found old magazines, more evidence of the generations who have called it home.
“I’d love to go back and see what the current students have done with it,” Braner said.
Best hopes are the porch is still drawing friends on a warm afternoon while the memory — and smell — of Trash Jenga has faded away.1 Comment
226 L St. was home to Lee Mason, Jim Yates, Pat Leneghan, Sean Connelly, Chris Petra, Doug DeRose and Jim Kniesse — sophomores in the Class of 1987 living in their first house after living in the first-year residence hall.
Near the student neighborhood but close to academic buildings, the house is in a prime location, both current and former residents agree.
The ’80s were an exciting time for the University of Dayton basketball team, recalls Mason, and celebrations would take place in what is now the P parking lot that backs up to the house.
“We used to set up grills behind all of the big fraternity and sorority houses,” Mason said. “The entire parking lot would be full of people. I still have cups from that party.”
Since then, the house has undergone a few changes. Mason said that whenever he visits campus, whether to see his daughter, Kelsey — a sophomore mechanical engineering major — or enjoy alumni events, he always tries to visit his past residences, including 226 L St.
“It actually used to be pretty rundown,” he said. “The carpet was bad, and it had an old kitchen — but we had a good experience there.”
One of the home’s quirks is its walk-in area separate from the living room. In spite of what Mason called its “awkward size and location,” the space provided Mason and his roommates plenty of opportunities.
“When we had dance parties in that little room in the front, there was a natural frequency,” he said. “The floor would actually pulse.”
From accidentally bringing in a couch full of fleas to riddling a wall with badly-aimed darts, Mason and his L Street roommates also balanced social hours, intramural sports and studying — making the most of their time at UD.
Take a visit through the house with today’s residents.1 Comment