A food service company founded by William Scandling in 1949, Saga began at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. Headquartered in Menlo Park, California the company went public in 1968. Two years later they were well established in numerous colleges, hospitals and retirement communities. Named for a Native American village, Kanadasaga, Saga also ventured into the restaurant market with Black Angus, Velvet Turtle, Straw Hat Pizza and MacArthur Park. Eventually Saga was managing the food service at over 400 sites. Named one of the 100 best companies in America to work for in 1984 Saga was taken over by the Marriott Corporation in a hostile take-over in 1986 which Scandling chronicled in his 1994 book, The Saga of Saga: the Life and Death of an American
Dream. Some have said that the
company changed the face of college food service nationwide by introducing administrative and service concepts to the industry.
Saga was followed at Wheaton by Marriott Food Service and then Bon Appetit, the latter taking Wheaton into the upper rankings of the Princeton Review's best campus food.