Thurston Manor


The house of Alpha Epsilon Pi’s Beta Chapter stands at 140 Thurston Avenue. Nicknamed “Thurston Manor” by the brotherhood, 140 Thurston serves as a house and home to the brothers of the AEPi. Built in 1955, Thurston Manor has a reputation for being one of the cleanest and best maintained fraternity houses at Cornell.

One of the chapter house’s most noticed features is our open foyer which allows the beauty of the outdoors to pass through its two glass walls. Through these walls appear the backyard, which holds a half-court basketball court, our 20 car parking lot, and plenty of green grass (at least while the Ithaca weather keeps it alive). Brothers are frequently tossing frisbees, footballs, or baseballs around in the backyard, grilling on the back porch, or just relaxing in the hammock and on chairs. The backyard is also home to AEPi's famous barbecues, run by our house's "grill master."

After entering the house from Thurston Avenue, one soon comes across the Mickey Schwerner Memorial Library. This library is named in memory of Mickey Schwerner, a brother of the Beta Chapter who was murdered while doing civil rights work in Mississippi.  Refinished in the spring of 2011, this room holds dozens of plaques and trophies that the Beta Chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi has accumulated over its nearly 100 year history at Cornell. Nicknamed "The Pibrary," brothers use the library to study, relax on the couches, or just gather to hang out after a long day.

The first floor is also home to 9 oversized bedrooms. The size of the bedrooms in Thurston Manor is one of its most distinguishing features from many other fraternity houses at Cornell. Each room holds a double bed, a desk, wardrobe, dresser, and a futon or couch at minimum. Every brother receives free cable television, and wireless internet. Brothers are encouraged to arrange their room to their pleasing as well as to paint their room however they like.

On the second floor there is another lounge area, created by the Mu and Xi pledge classes. Featuring two couches, a television, and a bar, Thurston Manor's "Jewbars," named after the famous Collegetown bar and AEPi's jewish heritage, is a popular hangout for those who live upstairs. The second floor also holds nine oversized bedrooms, mimicking the layout of the first.

Moving down to the basement, one might start to smell something delicious cooking. Our incredible chef Giovanni Freesio works tirelessly in our fully equipped kitchen and provides the brothers with the best meals on campus. Chef Gio after growing up impoverished in Italy and fighting with the Italian forces, moved to America, where he has run and owned several restaurants in the Ithaca area, cultivated a farm, and raised his family. In addition to the wonderful meals served 5 days a week, our kitchen is always stocked with food as requested by the brothers.

The basement also holds the laundry room, where brothers have access to do their laundry for free in two high-efficiency washers and two dryers. Additionally, the basement is home to the brotherhood library. Remodeled in 2010, this room is home to a large leather couch, and a fully equipped bar. This room is used as both a gathering place, and for various brotherhood rituals over the course of the year.

Our tour of the house concludes with the large common room which is just a few steps away from the foyer. For most of the year the common room is split into our dining room and a living room complete with a 60” HD TV, fireplace, rage cage, and large wooden bar. Brothers frequently hang out here to watch football, movies, or just relax on a weeknight. The common room completely transforms for parties when we combine the dining room and living room into one giant dance floor for our various social events including mixers, date nights, parties, and other fun events. Our new 2500-Watt powered sound system complete with a 18” subwoofer and our DJ-quality lighting make our parties some of the biggest and best on campus.