Emeriti Park is Athens’ finest gem

 

Rolling hills, valleys and scenic landscapes are staples all throughout the Appalachian plateau in beautiful Southeast Ohio.

Emeriti Park in Athens is no exception.

The four-acre plot situated along South Green Drive, merely minutes from uptown Athens, contains many of the features that make this region of America great.

At the center of the park is a pond with two beautiful water fountains which bring Emeriti to life. Sprinkled around and facing the pond are sturdy wooden benches, each dedicated to important people who made Athens and Ohio University what it is today. A gazebo overlooks the entire park across from a bridge which separates the road from the park. Of course, the pathways in Emeriti are paved with the iconic bricks which define Athens, Ohio.

Emeriti in January.

However, beyond just being a pretty sight, Emeriti Park is my favorite place in Athens because it is the one place on campus where I can go to truly relax.

Being able to get away from life’s stresses and achieving tranquility, no matter how brief, is something everyone should be able to do when necessary. Emeriti Park is the place for me to be able to unwind.

I vividly remember a time last semester where I was particularly stressed out over a few midterms. I took a walk and stumbled upon an empty Emeriti at twilight. It was easily one of the most beautiful and serene backdrops I had ever seen.

I sat there for almost two hours. I turned my phone off, put it in my pocket, lit a Marlboro and just sat and relaxed, isolating myself from the troubles and stress of life.

The next two hours, time seemed to stand still. It was almost a psychedelic experience.

I did not notice the many college students walking by the rows of oak and maple trees on the outskirts of the park. I did not care the wind was increasing in speed as the sun set, making it a bit chilly outside. I did not worry about the homework and studying that eventually awaited me when I got back home.

It was just me, my thoughts (or lack thereof, in this context) and the gorgeous scenery around me.  

It is almost hard to describe a situation in which one reaches pure tranquility and ease of mind. It just simply does not happen very often, if it all, in today’s hectic hustle-and-bustle lifestyle.

I fell in love with Emeriti Park that fall night.

After those two hours, I stood up and walked back home, conscious of the work that was still looming over me.
I didn’t care. I got to work.  

 

Check out Ohio University’s release about Emeriti’s 2014 renovation

Ohio University’s Emeriti Park makes an impression on students and faculty

One of the most beautiful and serene places in Athens, lies in the heart of the Ohio University campus. Past Baker Center, between Walter Hall and Clippinger Laboratories, sits a crystal-like pond and fountain, vibrant memorial gardens, monuments and a gazebo where many students and faculty sit to enjoy the scenery. This magical place is famously known as Emeriti Park.

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The name “Emeriti Park” was derived from the many Emeriti faculty at Ohio University. To be given the Emeritus or Emerita status, the faculty or administrative member must be appointed by the president of the university. They also must have completed a period of meritorious, or praiseworthy, service during their retirement from Ohio University. Full library and email access, parking on campus and access to other campus events, are some of the special privileges awarded to those who are granted the Emeritus or Emerita status by the Ohio University Board of Trustees.

Emeriti Park is 4 acres in size. The park was designed by James Burkhard Associates and was dedicated to the Emeriti faculty in 2000.

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Emeriti Park has been a popular place for romantic dates, quaint study sessions, graduation and other special occasions photos, marriage proposals, and even weddings. The park is known for its simplicity and romantic atmosphere. Emeriti Park also adheres to the natural “green” theme of the Ohio University campus. This picturesque spot, nestled on the bed of the Hocking River, provides yet another place in Athens centered on maintaining and respecting the natural environment of South Eastern Ohio.

Emeriti Park is open 24/7 to the public. Whether one is studying with a friend, having a peaceful lunch, taking photos of the pristine landscape, or enjoying a jog on the trail, Emeriti Park encompasses a unique intimacy, that students, faculty and community members can enjoy.

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