Greetings Alumni, 505 Princeton here.
What an incredible and memorable nearly 50 years we have all shared. While some of you were around before I was, there have been over 800 men who have either lived under my roof (flat and pitched) or participated in dinners, meetings, and social events ranging from Exchanges, Two Yard Hop, Spidey Party, Rush events, Wine and Cheese parties and the list can go on. While no one would probably say I am a house with good bones, I feel I have served you all pretty well over the years and despite an occasional hole or two in my walls, you have all treated me well too. Many of you took good care of me in the spring of 1979 and again in 1997, when despite your best efforts to keep the water from the English Coulee out of the basement, the water won. True brotherhood was never more evident than it was during those two periods in my life. You stayed up around the clock, sandbagging and trying to pump water out faster than it came in. I also recall a few of the brothers taking a dive off the balconies. While those periods in time could go down as bad times, they were also good times in the way you all pulled together and truly exemplified character and friendship.
I’m not too proud to say that I required a face lift or two over the years. Crazy to think that I was only about 7 years old when I already needed new windows in 1981. Goes back to the good bones comment and the fact that I was built with residential grade materials rather than commercial grade materials. The wall outside by the front entry was torn down (or did it fall down?) in 1991 and was replaced with a bench. Siding replacement and a new pitched roof were a couple of other improvements done to my exterior in 2009.
Inside, my four walls are filled with many great memories. The Formal Living Room or Lounge as some referred to it, while quiet most days of the week because you weren’t allowed to eat, drink or chew in there came alive most Monday evenings for the chapter meeting. Formal events like Initiation and Homecoming events were also held in this room. While some of the art fixtures, murals and composite pictures changed over time, the one constant was the painting of Mrs. Uhas that hung on the wall for over 40 years until it was packed away this spring. Mrs. Uhas complained about that picture the day it was hung, but it never left its place of honor for a truly great woman who graced not only 505 but also 515 Oxford and impacted the lives of so many brothers for years. Every Christmas there was a tree that adorned this room. I could fill pages on all the various stories about how those trees made it into my Formal Lounge, but I have been sworn to secrecy. Yes, I know DU is non-secret, but to protect the innocent and not so innocent I will leave it up to you to recall your own memories.
The Dining Room was another room that while it was pretty active for lunch and dinner five days a week and hangover pizza on Saturdays after house clean up, it was especially full of energy on Monday nights for dinner. At times there could be up to 8 tables filled with the laughter and conversation of the day’s events amongst all the brothers. Sitting at the head of her table would be Mrs. Uhas (and later on, Helen Heen) who was keeping a keen eye on everyone and making sure they were displaying proper etiquette.
Thursday night, which was the common night for Exchanges, the dining room and informal lounge were bustling with all kinds of activity, literally! To this day, the song that was probably played, danced, and sung to most was Shout, by Otis Day & The Knights. Halloween parties and the Two Yard Hop were a couple of the date parties that always filled my walls with great enjoyment.
I get that it is time to move on to a new DU chapter house and from the looks of it to my south, it is going to be an
incredible one. I could go on about so many other memories and stories, but I would like to encourage all of you to send
in your own special memory of your time under my roof, whether it was flat or pitched! I’ll be back in future issues of the
Open Visor or on the website, NDDU.org to share more in the life and times of 505 Princeton!
Send your memories of 505 Princeton to: firstname.lastname@example.org