Rebecca Martelotti Staff Writer
Hillwood Commons is the place many Post students flock to during common hour. By common hour, you have most likely already sat through at least two morning classes and are starving. If the sight of long lines at the Cafe and Subway do not appeal to you, there are many alternatives for lunch.
LIU Post offers a break from 12:20 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., when classes are not supposed to be scheduled. This gives students enough time to venture off-campus for their lunch break. Some students have mixed feelings about staying on campus for lunch. They are forced to eat what is available in Hillwood or bring food from home. Off-campus lunches provide students with the opportunity to try a variety of foods each day rather than having the same lunches day after day.
It is not news that buying lunch, both on or off campus, may be expensive. “I generally leave campus for lunch, but I do live close enough that I can go home,” said Mark Ermmarino, a sophomore Criminal Justice major. “Whether it’s buying lunch in Hillwood or off-campus, the lunch break can be expensive but I would rather pay for food that is better than what’s in Hillwood.”
Prices in Hillwood Commons are generally expensive and can cost just as much as going out to eat. The campus has many commuter students who travel in packs to Hillwood to spend their break. The lines in Hillwood are continuous. You wait on line to get your food and then you wait on line to pay for your food. Once you paid for your food, you have to basically fight for a table to sit and eat.
Dorm students have the option of eating at either Hillwood or Winnick. Commuter students only have one on-campus dining option.
“I always leave campus for lunch. The lines are too long and as a commuter, you just sometimes need a break to clear your head,” said Christina Sbarro, senior Public Relations major.
The roots of off-campus lunches lie in the desire for students to take a break from their daily scholastic life and have the feeling of freedom for a short time. Whether you commute or dorm, sometimes leaving the campus surroundings can cause a new burst of energy and creativity. It can be a long day if you are confined to campus.
The top places to go during break seem to be the closest, anywhere from a 10 to 15 minute drive from campus. The Wheatley Plaza Shopping Center located where Glen Cove Road meets Northern Boulevard has a few dining options. There is a Starbucks and also two restaurants: Ben’s Kosher Deli, which has many lunch special options, and Bar Frites Restaurant, which is expensive and always crowded around lunch time.
On 6255 Northern Boulevard, East Norwich, students have two dining options. Messina Market is a gourmet deli that has everything from omelets and sandwiches to burgers and pasta. The food is excellent, but it is expensive. Red Tomato pizzeria is located next door and serves typical Italian food and personal-sized pizza.
“I always leave campus for pizza, it’s my favorite food,” said Michelle Morey, a junior Journalism major. “The pizza in Hillwood oddly doesn’t taste anything like pizza.”
If students are looking to get an actual pizza pie, they can travel a little farther into Oyster Bay for Marios’s pizzeria located on 253 Pine Hollow Road, where a regular pie is $13.75. Abeetza Pizza, located at 86 Glen Cove Road in Greenvale, has authentic Italian pizza and homemade pasta, a regular pizza is $14.25. Another option is Lontza Pizza located at 38 Glen Cove Road in Greenvale, which has many student and lunch specials. Students can also get coupons from inside issues of The Pioneer. These pizzerias are in the normal price range.
Kitchen Kabaret is another option for students; it is a gourmet deli roughly 15 minutes from campus, on Glen Cove Road, near the entrance to the Long Island Expressway. It offers a 10 percent discount with a college ID. If you are in the mood for Chinese, try Hunan Taste, which is directly across the street from Burger King on Northern Boulevard and has a special lunch menu from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
“My personal favorite place to go is Bar Frites or Messina Market,” said Matthew Applewhite, a senior Broadcasting major and Journalism minor. “I sometimes will even leave campus to grab Starbucks just because the lines in Hillwood Commons are so slow.”
If students choose to stay on campus, they do have options, which range from the more standard cafeterias to food-court-style dining to grab-and-go conveniences in the snack machines. Hillwood has broadened its dining offerings to suit more students’ preferences. LIU Post has also made the effort to accommodate dietary restrictions by incorporating vegetarian and vegan options, kosher and ethnic food. The campus also has franchise eateries like Subway and, of course, Starbucks.
Even if you do not have a car, a shuttle from the campus Chapel does run to Pathmark in the Wheatley Plaza shopping center in Greenvale. The problem is the shuttle schedule. The shuttle runs every hour. Therefore, taking the shuttle at 2 p.m. would make a student late for an afternoon class.
Talia Charlton, a junior Journalism major, who dorms on campus, said. “I do not have a car on campus, but the shuttle takes long and only comes every hour or so. If you miss a shuttle, you are stranded for another hour. It’s just not worth it to leave campus when you don’t have a car—unless you have a friend who is willing to drive.”
“I always leave campus with my group of friends. We will go and meet up with our friends that go to other schools,” said Jason Kanyike, a junior Psychology major and Journalism minor. “I think common hour is super helpful because you can either do some homework or socialize for a bit.”
Lunch off-campus does also present the opportunity for students to put away their schoolbooks and meet up with friends to have a carefree hour. Just make sure to return to campus for afternoon classes.