“It was Erika Christakis’ great idea, so she deserves credit,” said Sue Watts, administrator in Pforzheimer House, where Erika and her husband, Nicholas Christakis, are co-masters. The inspiration came last spring with a new weekly event called Pfoho Pfridays.

The Junior Common Room had just been renovated, with jazzy booths and playful lighting. A dartboard and a large-screen television were added to one side of the room, and a pool table anchored the other end.

Pfoho Pfridays are designed to use the space to celebrate the weekend’s arrival at 5 p.m. Refreshments such as chicken wings, fondue, and mini-sliders, along with chips and salsa from Felipe’s, a Pfoho Pfavorite, help set the mood.

As they do in all the undergraduate Houses at Harvard, different generations connect each day in the dining halls and rec rooms, and at events like PfoHo Pfridays.

Pforzheimer resident tutor Marie Dach reflected on how that affects her husband, Neal, also a tutor, and their young family.

“Pfoho Pfridays is a great way to wind down at the end of a long week,” she said. “It gives Neal and I a chance to reconnect with students each week in a relaxed and informal setting. Owen [their son] loves getting passed around and interacting with everyone. We try to time his nap schedule around PfoHo Pfridays so that he is sure not to miss out on the fun.

“It is remarkable to look around … and see all of the students, the House masters and resident dean, our tutor peers and House staff, babies, and even some of our alums engaging with each other and playing pool or darts or watching soccer. Pfoho Pfridays truly brings us all together and connects us as one broad community. It is my favorite event at Pfoho.”

1 Sophie Bearman (left) and Rachel Townzen enjoy “Pfoho Pfridays,” a weekly tradition in the Junior Common Room at Pforzheimer House.
2 Nachos from Felipe’s are a crowd favorite.
3 Yi-Jou Chiang (from left), Kevin Sikah, and Justin Lo kick off the weekend in the JCR.
4 Yi-Jou Chiang entertains Owen, age 1, the son of resident tutors Marie (left) and Neal Dach.
5 Suzanna Bobadilla (left) and Reina Gattuso enjoy the new couches in the Junior Common Room.
6 The room is colorful and inviting following recent renovations.
7 Erin Nelson, assistant to the resident dean, watches 1-year-old Owen Dach.
8 Seniors Audrey Anderson (left) and Sophie Bearman try to make sense of the scoring system while playing darts.
9 Most of the residents head to dinner but Imani Radney, Hilton Simmet, and Brian Boursiquot stay and chat.

 

Part of Gazette Topic: Harvard Houses