Category Archives: Penn Park

Tug of War: The Penn Park Version

Author: Stephanie Y., C’08

I’m always surprised how much Penn students love tug of war. The annual sorority tug of war competition in the Palestra is always quite the spectacle, and this year, the College Houses battled it out at the Penn Park Field Day. Being a College House lifer (I lived in Rodin College House all 4 years), I was really excited to see all the College House gear at Penn Park. Check out Rodin’s awesome yellow headbands. I wish we had those when I lived in Rodin! I also loved Hill House’s “We’re too cool for A/C” t-shirts (not pictured). Very clever.

Rodin College House and the power of the yellow headbands

Rodin College House, Part II

Stouffer College House

Teams of 10 competed in the single-elimination tournament, and Stouffer College House won it all. In fact, the championship round was Stouffer A vs. Stouffer B, so they got 1st and 2nd place. They managed to win without the power of matching headbands or matching t-shirts. Very impressive. I hope everyone has checked out Penn Park. It’s absolutely beautiful, and I can’t wait to play on the new tennis courts and run the Penn Park Homecoming 5K on Saturday, November 5, 2011.

Stouffer College House – Penn Park Tug of War Champions (pictured with the Michael G. Housman College House Cup)


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Filed under Alumni Perspective, Campus Life, Homecoming Weekend featuring arts and culture, Penn Park, Philadelphia, Stephanie Y.

I Bike Philly

Author: Colin Hennessy

Philadelphia is a biker’s city. With more and more Center City streets making room for bike lanes, cyclists are able to traverse our city with increased ease and safety. Despite these advancements, what really excites me as a relatively new biker is the Schuylkill River Heritage Area Trail.

Each morning before work, well most mornings, my colleague and I meet and ride to the trail. Our morning routine includes a 10-mile journey to the Falls Bridge and back to the start of the trail near Spruce Street. The whole excursion takes about one hour (door-to-door). This bike friendly journey includes stunning scenery and views of the river. Long straight-aways provide many opportunities for sprinting, while one or two mild hills give that brief burning sensation in quad muscles. In addition, on the weekends we have extended our journey and ventured to Valley Forge.

The best news is the trail is minutes from Penn’s campus. All members of the Penn community are able to take full advantage of this trail. With the opening of Penn Park (today) the combined outdoor space in and around the Penn campus is extraordinary. Few urban schools can boast the amount of green space so easily accessible by their campus.

As late summer transforms to fall, I hope you will take full advantage of the moderate temperatures and lingering daylight that are made for long bike rides, riverside runs, or casual walks and talks. Philadelphia is a wonderfully accessible city and Penn is right at home here.

Make a plan to visit Penn Park and the Schuylkill River trail – before long your visits might become part of your daily routine, like mine.

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Filed under Colin H., Penn Park, Philadelphia, Sustainability at Penn, The Penn Fund

Penn Honors Lenape Land of New Penn Park

Author: Cecilia Ramirez, C’05, SP2’10

If you haven’t heard, Penn has been working on a beautiful new 24-acre park on the east side of campus and the official grand opening is scheduled to take place from Sept. 15-17, 2011. There is an amazing celebratory line-up for this big occasion including live music, free food and refreshments, field activities (including human foosball) and even fireworks! If you haven’t been back to Penn in a while, you will definitely be blown away by this.

During Homecoming Weekend featuring arts and culture at Penn (when we will crush Princeton,) you can also attend a special pre-game tribute ceremony to commemorate the land upon which this new park was built- land home to the Lenape people of our region. Both Penn and Princeton reside on Lenape soil, so we will pay tribute to the ancestors who cradled both of the schools that will be present for the Homecoming Football game. The Association of Native Alumni and Natives at Penn will be hosting this historic event and all are welcome to attend.

Penn Park stretches along 31st Street from Walnut Street to South Street and includes 12 tennis courts, a multi-purpose stadium for 400 spectators, 520 trees, a softball stadium and a multi-level elevated walk. The new space actually increases Penn’s green space by 20%!

Penn Park Event Rundown

  • Grand Opening Picnic: Thursday, September 15, 2011 (5:00 pm to 7:30 pm)
  • Field Day: Saturday, September 17, 2011 (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm)
  • Lenape Land Pre-Game Land Tribute: Saturday, November 5, 2011 (10:00am to 11:00am)

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Filed under Alumni Perspective, Cecilia R., Homecoming Weekend featuring arts and culture, Penn Park, Philadelphia

Paradise Found

Author: Colin Hennessy

How does the song go? “Pave paradise and put up a parking lot?” Well, not at Penn. We took 24 acres of concrete and asphalt and transformed it into a vast urban park. New sporting fields and walking paths combine to create a lush oasis on the eastern boarder of campus, an oasis this Penn employee cannot wait to visit – regularly.
I had the opportunity to take a tour of the still-under-construction park today and was thrilled with what I saw and learned. In addition to the vast amounts of new green grass and over 500 expertly-selected trees (thanks to our friends at the Morris Arboretum), the park has been constructed with sustainability and green land use in mind. Subterranean rain water collection cisterns will feed irrigation for the freshly planted trees and grasses, while accessible paths and access bridges allow easy admission to all members of the Penn community.

When I last wrote about Penn Park in April, the ground was still cold and the progress seemed sluggish. However, following my tour today I am very excited about the massive park that is literally coming out of the ground just a few strides from my office.

I invite you to come back to campus when Penn Park is complete in September, and take part in this beautiful redevelopment project that was built, in large part, because of generous alumni support. You can play tennis, bike around the park, or simply sit and daydream in the grass while enjoying a view of the beautiful Center City skyline. I promise you that Penn Park not disappoint.


Filed under Campus Life, Colin H., Penn in the Summer, Penn Park