Onward State Goes to Paternoville


This week’s camp-out is shaping up to be one of the biggest and best in the history of Paternoville, and we’re not going to let everyone else have the fun. That’s right, we’ve got an Onward State tent up at Beaver Stadium, and we’ll be joining in the festivities. We’re one of more than 100 tents here, and we’re looking excited to one long, chaotic, and unbelievably fun experience. All week, we’ll be bringing you content live from Gate A—both inside and outside of our new home.

We’ll let this be our live blog thread, and it’ll be consistently updated until the Alabama game, with updates on the latest from Paternoville, bringing you up to speed on visitors, free food, and events. The weather forecast may be crappy, but our hopes are high for this week. We’ll have plenty of other features and news stories, too, stuff you surely won’t want to miss–but this should be the thread you keep bookmarked all week.

Monday, 3 p.m.:

Blanche DuBois, in A Streetcar Named Desire, famously said that she “always depended on the kindness of strangers,” but she’s not alone in that reliance. The two of us who tried to pitch our tent today are total newbs to this thing, and really had no idea what we were doing. We almost broke one of the two poles that hold the tent up. Fortunately, our next-door neighbors are seasoned veterans and helped teach us how, exactly, a tent gets put up. And by that I mean they constructed it for me. If you’re reading this: Thanks, guys!

We’re heading off to the opening ceremony of Paternoville—the drumline rally (I can hear a cowbell off in the distance), and we’ll be sure to bring you images and multimedia as soon as we can get them uploaded.

Here’s our tent with the red tarp, standing tall:


Monday, 7 p.m.:

Some campers are still playing in the rain, tossing around footballs and such.  Others are in their tents playing cards or reading.  I’m getting some homework done, while getting dripped on by the rain.  Our tent is leaking in all four corners. We need more towels and a tarp. FYI, tarps are necessary. We will always learn the hard way, huh?

The drumline rally was pretty fun. We learned some new songs; a lot of them were quite offensive.  Here’s an example:

Paternoville Pitt Song

I’m missing the Onward State meeting tonight to hold down the fort here in tent land.  It’s getting chilly.  I’m trying to keep everything dry, but am failing quite miserably. These animal crackers are my only friend. If anyone is reading this in Paternoville, let me know how your first night is going!

Also, whoever is in the green tent:  It looks like you brought the party. Holy huge tent!


Monday, 8 p.m.:

Quick tip:  Have a set of “wet clothing” and a set of “dry clothing.”  I am currently in my “wet clothing” outside charging the laptop with all the important people of Paternoville. They just ordered Wings Over, which seems like a popular choice among campers.

Apparently there are going to be about 115 tents here this week. It’s going to be chaos. Especially since the weather report tells me that this rain will NEVER STOP.

Hopefully I will have some company soon from my fellow Onward Staters!


Tuesday, 12 a.m.:

Things are staying fairly damp here in Paternoville, but it hasn’t put a damper on camper morale from what I’ve seen. The tents around us all seem to be in good spirits despite the rain, except for one group of campers who were disappointed to learn that Insomnia Cookies does not deliver to Paternoville. A few memorable quotes heard around camp this evening:

We were on the little jumbotron for a good two minutes!

Why don’t we ever do a blue out?

(When asked if they had any rope) Do we have any roaches?

Here’s the scene on a wet Paternoville this evening:


Tuesday, 7 a.m.:

I’m lucky enough to have an 8 a.m. class today, so I am one of the early risers. I fell asleep early last night, but tossed and turned most of the night.  Waking up at 3 a.m. to the bottom of my sleeping bag soaking wet was not a good feeling. I felt the fetal position would be the best way to sleep peacefully after the water took over. Most of my books and notes are a bit damp now. I’d recommend ziplock bags to prevent this from happening. I’ll be more prepared tomorrow night for my next shift.

Also, please go away rain!


Tuesday, 12:35 p.m.:

I ran to the tent from East for backup. It was the first time I ever came out to Paternoville, so seeing the huge camp of tents for the first time was pretty powerful (especially since I had no idea where the OS tent was). Luckily, going off texts and the photos above in this liveblog, I found our tent. It’s peaceful, lying here, listening to the rain and someone talking about their math homework. Thank you to whoever brought that tarp, by the way. Some guy in another tent just yelled out a “We Are,” and you can definitely sense the spirit and family here when voices from all the other tents came back with an energetic “Penn State!”


Tuesday, 4:00 p.m.: 

Sad news to report on the Liveblog: tonight’s trashcan football tournament has been canceled. The event would’ve benefited Uplifting Athletes, the charity perhaps best known for being the beneficiary of Lift for Life. It’s one that started at Penn State, and works to raise money for “rare diseases.” Not only would Paternoville campers have contributed to a worthy cause, but they would’ve had a ton of fun doing so. The rain here takes another casualty…but at least we’re staying dry. For the most part. Pro-tip: copies of The Daily Collegian are super-absorbent, and great for soaking up the puddles that have probably formed in your tent by now.


Tuesday, 9:30 p.m.

The UPUA came by earlier with free pizza that was gone in about a snap, and Onward State gave out free cups to several lucky campers. The rain, at this point, has lightened somewhat (I’m going to eat those words), but it was coming down pretty heavily earlier, and the wind had picked up significantly. And, bad news for all of us: a meteorology major told me that the weather will not clear up in time for Saturday’s game (can you say Iowa 2009)? But cowbells, “We Are” chants, and promise for an “epic night” have everyone in high spirits. Besides, who cares? This is the flippin’ Alabama game! I’ve heard from multiple people that they had to camp out for this one, no matter the weather.


Wednesday, 12:00 a.m.

Just returned from a wet and wild night over at Paternoville. The rain hasn’t let up, but that didn’t stop some campers from breaking out the tarps and baby oil for a slip and side right outside of Beaver Stadium. Check out photos and videos of that as well as some camper interviews below:


Paternoville sings “Fight On, State”


Interview with Paternoville President John Tecce and Rachel Wallen


Slip & Slide Tuesday night


Wednesday, 8:06 p.m.:

I am currently holding down the fort all by myself. I have tried to dry it out a little with the lone sponge, and so far it doesn’t look too bad…except for the one puddle that refused to be mopped up. I’d also have to say that the corner with the hot pink football is my favorite part about this tent.



Melanie went to get the sleeping bags she’s been trying to dry, and Dan went off to who knows where. At least I have a little friend! I’ve been calling him the ‘Onward Gator,’ and he is the new addition to our tent. I kept joking around with some of the staffers who have been here that I was going to bring a pool float. They really could’ve used him this morning! He’s currently guarding the door. Also, not too long ago, the men’s lacrosse team came out and handed the campers free pizza. Some of the lacrosse guys even gave a nice shoutout to OS! They love reading the site, probably just as much as the campers here love free food.


Anyway, I hear the shouts of everybody out of their tents and playing football. The weather really isn’t that bad out here either. It’s DEFINITELY better than it was last night! On that note, I’m going to take a walk outside and try to hand out the rest of the cups we have here.
Wednesday, 10:57 p.m.:
No rain right now. Yay! I came by earlier and grabbed the sleeping bags to throw them in the dryer. Apparently they just got completely soaked through last night. The one sleeping bag needed four hours in the dryer! Yikes!
It’s a lot more lively tonight than the other two nights. “Cotton Eyed Joe” is blaring and there is a dance circle going on in front of me; there are Penn State chants and a small football game going on behind me. The Lion came and pumped us up! He didn’t like our song about Michigan. Profanity, profanity.
I’m alone in the tent for the night.  I do have the Onward Gator to cuddle with, though.
Not really too much going on.  I seem to keep missing the free food portion of the event. Unlucky!
^my cuddle buddy!
Thursday, 3:21 p.m.:
Guess who? I’m back again!  On hour 40 of being at Paternoville.  I slept like a baby last night.  It was glorious not waking up to a puddle in my tent.  I’m not sure Devon can say the same thing tomorrow, though.  Just as the sun came out and everyone was loving life, eating pizza, and getting free swag, the rain started again.  It’s not so bad right now, just drizzling a bit.
Tonight is supposed to be a very exciting night in Paternoville!  Unfortunately, I will be getting some work done (oh, you guys didn’t think I went to classes, did you?).  Things are calm.  A big ole Alabama RV drove by and they threw their flag out at us.  Some of us cheered.  Some others booed.  I really just wish everyone could be friends.  They aren’t Ohio State, so we should be nice, right?
Not too much else to say at the moment.  I’ll let the others entertain you more tonight!
Thursday, 4:42 p.m.:
It’s downpouring again, and I’m still here.  This time I am joined by the lovely Evan Kalikow.  We are watching YouTube videos on my laptop. That is all.
Thursday, 6:20 p.m.:
Paternoville had hit a bit of a lull between rainstorms, which proved the perfect opportunity for Coach Chambers and the men’s basketball team to show up with free pizza! They unloaded a ton of boxes of Rotelli’s pizza to share with the campers. Chambers chatted with everyone who came out to see him, and the basketball players milled around, mingling, and even went in to check out one group’s nice tent. Chambers has certainly made a name for himself since his arrival, even giving out wristbands with his trademark phrase: ATTITUDE.
Thursday, 6:49 p.m.
Just when I thought the basketball fun was over, a dance party broke out in the middle of Paternoville. The basketball players were dancing with other fans, and they had a dance contest with three girls who did the Bernie and the Dougie. It went on for awhile, while a kid in a Kentucky shirt got booed. It all ended with a special drumline.
Members of the men’s basketball team join in a dance party:

And they join in a drumline afterward:


Thursday 10:23 p.m.


We GOT the Lion. Blue band here too. Fun night.If there was any doubt before, it should now be settled: Thursday night is the highlight of these week-long Paternovilles. Not only has the rain subsided pretty much all night–with the exception of a five-minute long downpour that sent campers scurrying to their tents–but we’ve had tons of guests coming by all evening. Dan wrote about the basketball team, but shortly after he left, members of the football team showed up, including both Rob Bolden and Matt McGloin (neither of whom is particularly good at trashcan football), wide receiver Justin Brown, defensive tackles Jordan Hill and Devon Still, and coach Jay Paterno.

Jay Paterno poses with visiting Alabama fans.
QBs Rob Bolden and Matt McGloin play some trash can football.






The Blue Band showed up too, serenading campers with Penn State staples; not just the fight song, but “Stand By Me,” and “Hey Baby.” They brought the Lion with them, who crowdsurfed across Gate A. And that’s not even mentioning all the free food–courtesy of the Swim Team came three giant trays of chicken wings, and random P-ville supporters showed up carrying pizzas. As I speak, the one and only “Boombox Guy” is leading a sing-a-long of the Backstreet Boys classic “I Want it That Way.” Even a few Tide fans showed up, and sure enough, we responded with northern hospitality, giving them a tour around our tent village. This has been a night to remember, and one that might well be the hallmark of my Penn State experience.


Friday, 1:04p.m.

The weather has cleared up immensely since the last time I’ve been up here. The ground is almost dry. People are out and about, playing trash can football, studying, and getting pumped up. ‘We are!’ cheers are happening every few minutes. Cars and buses are honking as they drive by. B94.5 is broadcasting pop music from across the street by Medlar Field. TV crews from Alabama are roaming around trying to give viewers at home an idea of what Paternoville is. Delightful Southern accents. Right now, by the power tent, Troy Weller of the PCC is getting interviewed by ABC33/40 out of Birmingham. I’m trying to do some reading for my thesis, but it’s not really happening.

– Eli

Friday, 6:03 p.m.

Dan and I painted our banner this evening, so keep an eye our for the Onward State banner at the game tomorrow! It looks pretty good, if I do say so myself.  I’m not staying over tonight, but there was quite the crowd the whole day, and it was entertaining as always.  Met some Bama fans and sent them to the Creamery.  I like this weekend a ton already.


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