news-category: Campus News

Gardner-Webb Celebrates Opening of Bo’s Smokehouse

Diners enjoy samples in the new Bo's Smokehouse

Newest Dining Option Offers Award-Winning Barbecue and Eclectic Twist on Quesadillas, Wings and Other Favorites

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Gardner-Webb’s newest dining option, Bo’s Smokehouse, opened on Sept. 8—just in time for Family Weekend. The restaurant, located downstairs in the Dover Campus Center, features award-winning North Carolina Barbecue with a choice of regional sauces, quesadillas, wings, sandwiches and salads.

The ribbon cutting ceremony included a prayer of dedication and blessing by Vice President and University Chaplain for Christian Life and Service Josh Parrot, comments from GWU President Dr. William M. Downs, Executive Chef Thomas Tessneer, Student Body President Madi Mamoone and Aramark representatives. 

Cutting the ribbon for Bo’s Smokehouse, from left, are GWU President Dr. William M. Downs, Student Body President Madi Mamoone, Executive Chef Thomas Tessneer and Aramark District Manager Jonathan Parker.

Downs began his comments by thanking everyone who contributed to the development, construction and opening of the restaurant. “This place didn’t just happen; this place was made, and I think the genesis of Bo’s Smokehouse began with Chef Thomas–who came here four years ago,” Downs praised. “I remember us talking that we would have to find a place to do barbecue. We have a championship smoker and chef … he’s the expertise, the brains behind all of this. A round of applause for Chef Thomas!”

Tessneer thanked Downs for his support. “I really do love the barbecue atmosphere and smokehouse and low-country theme … and a lot of other stuff we can offer you guys that is not available on the main line,” he affirmed. “I’m looking forward to trying to please all of your bellies as you are waiting out there smiling. I just want to thank Aramark and Dr. Downs for the opportunity for me to come on board and be able to do this.”

Downs also recognized General Manager Suzanne Glasscock, Aramark District Manager Jonathan Parker, the Aramark team, and Director of Facilities and Maintenance David Wacaster, who took on the hard work and challenge of having the restaurant open by Family Weekend.

He also thanked the students. “They gave us a lot of input on this—they helped us shape the menu; they are going to continue to help us shape the menu and helped us come up with a name,” Downs asserted. “We are doing this for them, and we are going to make sure the students are happy and excited about this.”

Mamoone related the students’ excitement and gratitude for the new dining option—“especially something as niche as a Carolina-style barbecue joint,” she said. “We’ve been asking administrators to bring back that wow factor here on campus, and I think Bo’s will do just that. The late-night wings and quesadillas truly encompass the college experience.”

Parker shared his appreciation for the partnership between Aramark and Gardner-Webb. “We are so proud to be a part of the transformation that is happening at Gardner-Webb,” he noted. “It’s an exciting time to be a part of the dining program. Today marks an important milestone in that journey.”    

After the formal ceremony, guests were treated to samples of the restaurant’s offerings. They enjoyed brisket, pulled pork and chicken, quesadillas, fried okra, hushpuppies, baked beans, mac-and-cheese and banana pudding.

This new campus dining option is open every evening until 8 p.m. Bo’s Smokehouse features a delicious array of top-quality local meats prepared in a unique collaboration with Gardner-Webb campus favorites. The fast-casual restaurant will have an ever-evolving menu to satisfy taste buds with new flavors and monthly specials. 

The hours of operation will be Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 3 to 8 p.m. 

Gardner-Webb University is North Carolina’s recognized leader in private, Christian higher education. A Carnegie-Classified Doctoral/Professional University, GWU is home to nine colleges and schools, more than 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, and a world-class faculty. Located on a beautiful 225-acre campus in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb prepares graduates to impact their chosen professions, equips them with the skills to advance the frontiers of knowledge, and inspires them to make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of others. Ignite your future at

Previous News Article

Gardner-Webb Campus Remembers Jim Johnson, 'Treasured Friend and Colleague'

Next News Article

Celebrating Alumni – Dr. Victoria Harlan Honored for Service

Related News

  • News Article

    Gardner-Webb’s Department of Natural Sciences Receives Funds for Undergraduate Researchers

    North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities Presents Two of 11 Grants to GWU Students BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (NCICU) awarded two of 11 Undergraduate Research Program Grants to students in the Gardner-Webb Department of Natural Sciences. Tuyet “Snow” Anh Nguyen, a chemistry major, and Kyndal Elaina Jackson, a biology major, received […]

    a collage featuring a girl looking into a microscope and another girl explaining her science poster
  • News Article

    Members of Gardner-Webb’s Concert Choir Ready for Trip and D-Day Observance

    GWU is the Only N.C. College Invited to Perform in 80th Anniversary Concert in Abbaye-aux-Hommes BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—The Gardner-Webb Department of Music started making plans last year for its trip to France to perform during the 80th anniversary of D-Day. Soon, the many hours of practice and preparation will be rewarded as 16 students and […]

  • News Article

    Gardner-Webb Alumnus Mason Miller Records 10 Saves for Oakland A’s This Season  

    Pitcher Named American League Reliever of the Month BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Dominant, flamethrower, electric — all adjectives describing Oakland A’s rookie closer and former Gardner-Webb baseball pitcher Mason Miller. Since the start of the 2024 MLB season, Miller has continued to wow spectators and commentators with his fastballs and strikeouts. In April, Miller was named American […]