We at The Review offer these Greek house profiles as a general guide to those unversed in the ways of the mainstream Dartmouth social scene. Every description should be taken with a grain of salt, and readers are encouraged to form their own opinions on different houses.
Alpha Chi Alpha
Alpha Chi Alpha is known for its high GPA and impressive presence in many campus organizations, including Model United Nations and The Daily Dartmouth. Alpha Chi’s are fond of live music and known for their annual day party, “Pig Stick,” in the spring. The name refers to the giant wooden pole erected behind the house for daring students to climb, and the entire pig they roast and serve to partygoers. The physical house appears to be a more appropriate place for livestock than frat bros, however their backyard boasts a beach volleyball court rather than a pasture. Brothers can be identified by their red baseball caps sporting their fraternity letters.
Once known as the inspiration for the legendary film “Animal House,” AD was comprised mainly of rugby, soccer, tennis, and squash players. However, after recent events, their once magnificent lawn has been sectioned off, their windows have been boarded up, and their basement’s open sewer now runs dry. Now that said sports teams have joined other houses, AD’s brotherhood faces extinction. Some claim to see lights on and ghostly sounds of revelry emanating from the house late at night, but such reports are unverified.
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Alpha Phi Alpha was founded as the first historically black fraternity at Dartmouth College in 1972. Notable alumni include all-star NFL running back Reggie Williams and the MLB’s head of Baseball Operations Jimmie Lee Solomon. The fraternity has occupied two houses on Webster Avenue in the recent past and currently resides in the Channing Cox apartment facilities.
Beta Alpha Omega
Beta went dark for a few years in the early 2000’s but reemerged as fixture of Webster Avenue after kicking AZD out of their old house. Brothers are generally soft, polite, and kind. They are known for flipping tables in order to enjoy a good dance party. Their yard serves as a great place for grilling and spikeball on days warm enough to enjoy the outdoors. Currently under suspension, Beta has been forced to delay their rush until the winter term when their suspension is lifted and are currently warming the benches of other houses (Many fraternities are eagerly awaiting Beta’s return). Beta recruits from various sports teams, both varsity and club, and usually takes a large brotherhood.
Relaxed and laid-back, Bones Gate enjoys a good time, which probably accounts for their at-times tempestuous relationship with the administration. BG has a reputation for dabbling in harder substances, perhaps contributing to their generally apathetic (in a good way) reputation. Don’t be fooled by their chill vibes, as the brothers of BG are known for their ironic approach to Greek life: one of their signature house chants is simply “F–k BG.” They’re known for their live bands – usually jam, funk, or DJs – and their signature drink, Cutter.
Chi Gamma Epsilon
Although they have struggled to fill their pledge classes in the past few years, all in all, Chi Gams are solid guys. A block rush transformed the house, and many of brothers are now lightweight rowers or track and field athletes. They boast a consistently high GPA as well as many STEM majors. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that Chi Gam boasts a large, open basement very conducive to pong.
Heorot is a conglomeration of Hockey, Baseball, Rowing, Track, and Soccer players, as well as three or four token NARPs. Known for a healthy pong scene, large basement, and the Great Hall, Heorot boasts plenty of space for debauchery including the annual Masters tournament final match. Their termly “Hilighter” party and the presence of sports teams attract masses of freshmen. For Heorots interested in reading this article, an audio copy will soon be made available.
Gamma Delta Chi
GDX might as well be Memorial Field. The football house tries to keep it medium-rare, but sometimes things fall through. The pit in the basement was originally designed as a swimming pool, but for safety reasons was soon converted to a racquetball court. That didn’t work out either; now, it is primarily used for more bibulous basement activities. GDX has increasingly sought to recruit beyond the football team and has rushed a handful of brothers outside its traditional roster.
Kappa Kappa Kappa
Tri-Kap is the oldest local fraternity, dating back to 1842. Having completed physical renovations during the spring of 2015, the brotherhood boasts perhaps the nicest interior out of all the fraternities. The brotherhood, which is the most diverse on campus, is known for one of the harder pledge terms on campus (they’ll often eagerly tell you, hoping to impress) and copious consumption of Keystone Light, the brothers of Tri-Kap are never reluctant to execute a Quick-Six.
Phi Delta Alpha
Lest the old traditions fail. But don’t worry, they won’t. That big white house on the row bleeds the darkest shade of classic Dartmouth green. A mixed bag of Rugby players, performance group members, and other campus leaders calls Phi Delt home, sharing in a quasi-cultish respect for tradition and one of the closest brotherhoods on campus. Known for hosting live bands during Green Key weekend’s “Block Party,” Phi Delt brothers are also down for laid back “scenes” at the “zig” and pong into the wee hours of the morning. A lot at Dartmouth has changed over the years, but the big white house on Webster has stood firm.
While not really a “fraternity” in the traditional sense of the word, 14 Webster Avenue is legendary for its debaucherous partying, loose morals, and out-of-control, anything-goes behavior. We hear Gail Hanlon is a real dinner party animal; if you’ve got the stuff, try to score an invite to her annual “Administrators Gone Wild” gala ball. Former President James O. Freedman had a grotto installed in the backyard, which we hear can be quite sensuous in the right company.
Known for their preppy clothes and pretentious attitudes, the brothers of Psi U can be seen partying through the windows of their “at capacity” house. Don’t bother trying to climb through the window, it’s been done before. If you ever hear reference to a turkey, it’s probably an illusion to Psi U’s rather odd new member term. Psi U’s are fond of teenage angst inspired music and love to play it at their dance parties. Quite a few brothers play country club sports like squash, sailing, rowing, tennis, and golf.
Despite the national fraternity’s origin in post-bellum Virginia Military Institute, Sig Nu is one of the more diverse houses on campus. They’re a small group of gregarious, genuine, and friendly guys who are prepared to chug, boot, and die, as their oft-repeated slogan suggests – as soon as marching band and Dungeons and Dragons society obligations are finished, of course. Their termly Sigma Nupa Valley party features (non-boxed) vintages, and likely more than half of the student body played their first game of pong in their basement.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon
An affluent and preppy brotherhood, SAE is known for its termly champagne party and egregiously preppy clothing, including popped collars and crustacean-embroidered shorts. Boasting a central location adjacent to Baker Library, SAE has been the subject of some amount of controversy in recent years due to libelous and disproven accusations of hazing. Despite the lack of evidence substantiating these wild claims, the College derecognized SAE in the winter of 2016 after an investigation into the fraternity’s new member term. With a spirit of perseverance, SAE took a full pledge class this fall and maintained its crowded basement scene. Their winter Beach Party entices hordes of scantily-clad students to trudge through the snow in order to frolic in the tons of sand they import for the event.
Theta Delta Chi
Ever since Robert Frost’s tenure at the organization in the 1890s, the literary reputation of Theta Delt has been in steady decline. TDX is known for their affinity for both black labs, lacrosse, and an increasing number of rugby players. Come 2:30 am the Boom Boom Lodge (a nickname earned after the murder of a Dartmouth student during prohibition) turns into a sweaty, steamy dance floor where hopeless partiers go as a last resort to find that special someone. The brothers of Theta Delt are famed for their soft-spoken sensitivity and respect for women, especially freshmen. But don’t let their mild nature fool you, these scoundrels can boot with the best of them.
Sigma Phi Epsilon
Sig Ep is the cheese pizza of fraternities. They’re not known for one thing in particular, but they still manage to appeal to everyone. They probably have the easiest new member term of any house, which, along with their large pledge classes, probably explains why their brotherhood isn’t particularly close. The antithesis of pompous, the brothers of Sig Ep want to have a good time without spending the night trying to dance with freshmen girls or engaging in excessive alcohol consumption. The house itself is probably one of the most sanitary on campus and is home to an absurdly large jack-of-all-trades sisterhood.
Known for their weekly Zeta Psider event, the brothers of Zeta Psi are friendly, even towards freshmen wandering into their house. The house itself is new and spacious, allowing plenty of room for pong in the basement. Be sure to be on the lookout for brothers selling McDonald’s burgers on Webster late at night: the money goes to a good cause!
La Unidad Latina Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity
Lambda Upsilon Lambda is a Latino affinity organization first established at Dartmouth in 1997. The organization has no physical plant, but hosts an annual semi-formal dinner featuring a guest speaker to discuss issues of Latin culture.
Sororities and Co-Ed Houses
Formerly Tri Delt, Chi Delt recently went local and boasts a class of great girls fond of flair. With aspirations to join the list of local sorority pong scenes, Chi Delt has big plans for the house’s future. Despite their love of pong, Chi Delts are more likely found on third floor Berry studying for their midterms two weeks out, rather than grimy frat basements. These librarians probably screwed your class median making them great girls to bring home to the parents.
Epsilon Kappa Theta
Formerly the Harold Parmington Foundation (HPF), EKT is one of two sororities that has dropped formal recruitment in favor of shakeout. Despite having small pledge classes, EKT boasts a very strong and diverse sisterhood. Many sisters are involved in campus activism, and the members tend to stick togather.
A handful of Sigma Delt sisters started a streaking club a few summers ago. Since then, they have targeted basements, study areas, and even the open air, so keep your eyes peeled. These enthusiastic ladies are fun and fond of drink, earning them a reputation as one of the “frattier” sororities. A popular destination for frat bros on probation seeking a familiar ambiance. Remember their motto: “Sinking halves and respecting women.”
Alpha Xi Delta
Recently booted from their former house by the resurrected Betas, AZD is known for its achievements in the classroom more so than in the basement. This sorority maintains a high GPA and a close relationship with Alpha Chi Alpha fraternity, whom they date at an alarmingly disproportionate rate.
Alpha Thetas are a rambunctious lot – or were, back in the late Seventies. They used to get juiced up and drive their cars relentlessly around Phi Tau until they were apprehended by the authorities or the thrill was gone – whichever came first. These days, as with most of the College’s more reckless traditions, the “Phi Tau 500” is no more. Alpha Theta has mellowed out as well. They are now known more for their capes and top hats than their antics behind the wheel.
Kappa Delta Epsilon
A local sorority, KDE boasts an outgoing sisterhood known for their loud outfits and voices. Formerly famous for its preppy Derby party in the spring, the sisterhood recently succumbed to political correctness and changed the theme to Woodstock (Derby with flowers). KDE’s rambunctious reputation pairs well with their recruitment from many girls’ athletic teams. As it enjoys the most spacious basement of any house on campus, KDE is one of the few sororities to play host to frat-style partying and pong. Don’t underestimate these girls; they have a lot of practice.
Kappa Kappa Gamma
Located past Alumni Gymnasium, Kappa rarely plays host to any notable social functions, but these gals are a staple on the Greek circuit. Kharacterized by the age old saying “We eat karrots and date Heorots,” these girls are often konsidered the social queens of kampus, as demonstrated in their social media presence. Although not as sporty as KDE, the sisters of Kappa enjoy their athletics, particularly skiing the slopes of NH in the winter. If you’re looking for a Kappa your best bet is to head to KAF and keep an eye out for their signature tote bag.
One of the newest sororities, Alpha Phi boasts increasingly strong pledge classes of outgoing, attractive Dartmouth women. If not in a frat basement, A Phi’s can be found laughing loudly on first floor Berry.
Recently relocated to a palladial new house at the far end of Webster Avenue, Kappa Delta is Dartmouth’s newest sorority. Known for its large and diverse sisterhood, this sorority quickly outgrew its old home on the fourth floor of Hitchcock and now has room to grow for the years ahead.
One might characterize Phi Tau as “eccentric,” but those more familiar with the house might count that as an understatement. They embrace their oddity and aren’t ashamed to demonstrate it. If you’ve got it, flaunt it. Their house is likely the nicest out of all the Greek houses, especially if you appreciate sci-fi and cooking. Their termly bash, “Milque and Cookies,” features thousands of diverse cookies and a thick dairy beverage brewed in cauldrons. Sadly, it is (mostly) non-alcoholic.
Resentment and disco dance parties are on the menu at this progressive, co-ed house. Many Tabards are emembers of the DOC or artistic organizations. In a strange trend, Tabard attracts some frat boys later in their Dartmouth careers because they want to appear deep. Their lingerie show attracts freshmen aplenty – definitely not for the faint of heart. The Greek letters in the wrought iron railing over Tabard’s front entrance spell out the house’s former, Greek name: Sigma Epsilon Chi.
Formerly Phi Sigma Psi, Panarchy isn’t quite a fraternity or a sorority—it’s a co-educational undergraduate society. The house broke away from the Greek system in 1994 and now hosts post-modern social events featuring striking architecture and clothing made of duct tape. They organize a popular “Gatsby” party once per term and are a destination for “free spirits.”
Another co-educational undergraduate society, Amarna is known for its termly Wine and Cheese party, as well as its eclectic membership. In recent years, a series of controversies have lowered membership.