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Freshman 101: Nittanyville Basics

Penn State football has always enjoyed a major home-field advantage, thanks to the #107kStrong capacity of Beaver Stadium and what some call the nation’s best student section. But one student organization takes its fandom to the next level before every home game.

Nittanyville is comprised of students that camp outside of Gate A at Beaver Stadium each week leading up to a Penn State home football game. The group puts on several events throughout the week to help boost the excitement for that week’s game, ranging from dunk contests featuring the basketball team, to trashcan football tournaments, to appearances by the coaches and players, and more.

There’s always plenty of free food available throughout the week, and the even better news is that Gate A is still within the network radius for Penn State’s wifi.

The process to participate in Nittanyville is pretty simple. Once you register for the Nittanyville Pride on the organization’s website, the next step is to find a group of students that you want to camp with. Anyone that registers to the pride will be added as a member of the group’s Canvas section.

Trashcan football is one of the many traditions that Nittanyville members enjoy throughout the week.

On Wednesday night during a typical camping week, groups of up to 10 students can sign up their group on Canvas to establish their spot in line. You must establish a representative for the group to list their phone number and name at the top of the list, and then have the names of everyone else assigned to your tent listed as well.

Most Nittanyville veterans would tell you to have this list typed out prior to when the sign-up opens, so that you can hit that ‘Submit’ button a few seconds quicker. It’s important to note that only one person from your cohort can sign your group up on the Canvas posting.

While you don’t personally have to remain in your tent 24/7, the organization does ask that at least one person from your group remains at the tent at all times. After signing in on Canvas, groups have one hour to arrive outside of Gate A to claim their spots, which are assigned based on the order of the Canvas sign-up.

Tents must be taken down by 7 a.m. on game day every week, and there are various other rules. Open flames (read: grills), alcohol, and extension cords or power strips are not allowed at the campsite. You can view the other rules and regulations of Nittanyville here.

In the past, the group has selected one home game per season to do a week-long campout for. Last season, Nittanyville announced that 934 students were participating for the Michigan game, which served as 2017’s week-long camping session. This season’s Ohio State week figures to draw an equally sizable crowd of students, as the 2012 matchup with the Buckeyes brought over 1,200 students to prop up a tent outside of Gate A.

Nittanyville is an easy way to meet other people that love Penn State football and the entire experience that encompasses a game day in Happy Valley. Grab your friends and find your sleeping bags for an extended stay outside of Beaver Stadium this fall.

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About the Author

Mitch Stewart

Mitch is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism from Roanoke, Virginia. In addition to his role with Onward State, Mitch talks about all the #sprots on Penn State's CommRadio. To contact Mitch, feel free to send him an e-mail at [email protected], and if you really don't value your social media accounts, follow him as he yells on Twitter about Penn State basketball @mitchystew.

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