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Hammocking Returns To Campus With Designated East Hall Groves

Penn State’s Office of Physical Plant (OPP) placed a hammock ban on Penn State’s campus last spring, citing the potential damage that hammock straps and other slacklines could cause to the bark and inner layers of trees.

Since then, once-crowded hammocking spots have been empty, with signs detailing the ban placed in the most popular and relaxing groves. The weather has been sunny, warm, and perfect for swinging, but the ban has been heeded despite several possible alternatives.

But on October 10, Penn State announced that OPP, working in conjunction with Housing and Residence Life, had installed two new hammock groves near East Halls. Located to the south of Stone Hall, these new groves consist of seven posts that allow students a place to hook their hammocks in a way that also ensures that no trees will be harmed.

“We are very excited to offer our students the first hammock grove on campus,” said Conal Carr, director of housing operations. “We believe they will enjoy the open space and ability to gather with friends, without any negative impact on our trees.”

Students should get to swinging as soon as possible because if this new installation proves to be a success, Penn State plans to do even more to keep campus safe for trees and open to hammocks.

“If the new hammock areas with the permanent posts are used, as we expect them to be, we can look to install more around campus,” said Brien Phiel, supervisor for grounds maintenance and ornamental horticulture/arboriculture at Penn State. “Our goal is to get these hammock groves in areas with existing shade and, if they’re used, possibly plant new trees around the groves to provide shade in the future.”

More trees, more shade, and more hammocks? This is the future we’ve all been waiting for since that pesky ban was put into place last April, and there’s a maybe, slight, probably-just-me-hoping-because-I-wrote-the-original-article chance that Onward State had something to do with it. How’s that for some hard-hitting, change-making journalism?

Stay swinging, Penn Staters.

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About the Author

Katie Moats

Katie Moats is a senior majoring in English, and her goal this year is to get a big girl job. Seriously, though, if you're looking for someone who can write and edit like nobody's business, she's Katelyn Moats on LinkedIn and will literally interview with you tomorrow. You can follow her @k_moats24 on Twitter for stupid content, but if it's something serious, feel free to shoot her an email (preferably in the form of a poem) to [email protected].

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