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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Fit to be king
Lilli Dellheim '25 M.A., Special to the Hawk • July 13, 2024

SJU Tabletop Club brings a new niche to campus

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Students participate in a tabletop game at one of the club’s meetings. PHOTO: KEELY GALLAGHER ’25/THE HAWK

For Jordan Busza ’23, Friday night has always meant enjoying board games in good company. With a collection of over 200 tabletop games, Busza has always felt at home within this niche of interest. 

This year, Busza found a way to bring this Friday tradition to campus, and to students with similar interests, with the creation of the SJU Tabletop Club. 

The club meets on Fridays from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. in the Perch (although they often lose themselves in the games and stay past that time). 

More than just to align with his personal routine, Busza scheduled this time strategically in order to cater to students who are looking for an option other than the party or bar scenes. 

“[I wanted to] set up something formal where people feel like, ‘Oh, this is another option for me.  I don’t have to feel like a shut-in, or feel like I’m not doing anything, or feel like I have to go to something because other people are going,’” Busza said.

Each week, Busza brings about 40 board games from his collection such as Monopoly, Risk and Clue. The club also engages in role playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons, as well as social deduction games like Mafia. While there are both weekly members and players that pop in as they pass by, there are typically about thirty players each week.

An interesting paradox from the strict rules that often accompany board games, this club has virtually no rules. Busza describes it as “laissez-faire.”

“You can come whenever you want,” Busza said. “You can come every week if you want to, you can stay for as long as you want, you can play for as much as you have time for. It’s very open to anyone.”

Louie Kontaras ’23 attended the club’s first meeting and observed that there seemed to be a game for everyone. While more casual players might lean toward board games, more serious players might go for the more involved role-playing games. 

“It’s kind of a hodgepodge of different environments,” Kontaras said. “So it is both something for serious members and just casual players.”

Despite the endless gaming options, to Busza, this club is about more than just the games they play.

“As much as board games are what I wanted this [to] come to be, it’s also just an open hangout club for people who want to express their niche,” Busza said. 

This club is a stress-free environment where students can go to unwind, according to Jason Palladino ’24, club member and a friend of Busza who helped to make the club official on campus. 

“It’s really welcoming, people come in and come and go as they please,” Palladino said. “Everyone is on good terms with each other. In general, it’s just a fun environment for people just to hang out on a Friday night and enjoy themselves.”

Juliette Liberatoscioli ’25, who has been into Dungeons and Dragons since sophomore year of highschool, has been attending the club every Friday night since it has been running. 

Liberatoscioli said this is where she met her entire friend group. 

“I was always a little worried that I wouldn’t fit in with people,” Liberatoscioli said. “But finding a club like [the] board game club…you can find other people that are into the same stuff as you.”

An inclusive environment, anyone can find their place in the Perch on Friday nights. 

“There’s a game for everyone and you just have to find it,” Busza said. “That’s the motto I live by.”

 

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