Bass catchin’ not bar hopping

As a farm girl from the South trapped at a rowdy party school I have approached my past four years of college much like a roller coaster: close my eyes and hope it’s over soon. Unlike other students, the place I know I’ll look back on with nostalgia when thinking about my college town isn’t a bar or a burrito place, it’s a fishing spot.

It’s true that many students visit Strouds Run State Park at some point during their stay in Athens, Ohio but what many of them don’t know about–or maybe just don’t care about–is a more secluded section of Strouds Run that is the core of Dow Lake. The dam built in 1959 that sits in a little off-set pocket right against East State Street.


http://wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/Portals/wildlife/Maps/Lake%20Maps/PDFs/dowlake2.pdf

While the north and west sides of the lake are typically occupied on warm spring and summer days, this little haven remains scarcely populated. Parking, boat rentals and beaches are located on the north and west sides of the lake so to the typical collegiate friend group deciding to embark on an outdoor pursuit this is where they end up. Yes, these city slickers and Midwest rurals are bonding over the great outdoors and it’s wonderful! However, I go to the water for exclusion.

A few times I have been sitting cross-legged on the bank securing my reel to my arrows, a meditative act I enjoy doing to prepare to bow fish, when a stranger suddenly joined me. My dog lets me know if someone is approaching before they could possibly see me. He isn’t a hunting dog by any means, just an overly loving goober who is particularly adept at tracking down hands to pet him.

These visitors are usually middle aged men who grew up here. “Townies” as us students like to call them. They always apologize for interrupting me because they came here to be alone too (after getting over their complete and utter surprise because a student knows this spot), then the bow sparks some interesting conversations.

One morning I was there and had no intentions of fishing. I brought the dogs to swim and to get some fresh air while I tinkered around with my bow. A younger gentleman came walking up (with my dog prancing beside him. Traitor.) and started setting up his spot to fish. He actually was a hobbiest archer himself and we sat and worked on my bow together. He had a set of archery wrenches (tools used to adjust a bow) and when he left he told me to keep them. It was simple and meaningless, yet I wouldn’t trade that wrench set for a million Court Street Snapstories.

I took this Snap when a kind townie gave me a spare set of tools for my bow!

For the most part it’s just my dog, the fish and myself over at the dam. Isolated. Not “experiencing” Athens. Occasionally, I get to listen to fishing stories or see pictures of last bow season’s buck though. It’s times like those that make me feel like I’m not the one missing out but instead the one actually experiencing Athens.

Monday roundup: Today, tomorrow and yesterday around Athens

1. Parents Weekend
Week six of the semester brought the first special weekend of the semester, Parents Weekend. For many students, this weekend was the first opportunity they’ve had to lay eyes on their parents since they left home for OU six weeks ago. For soon-to-be graduates, it was their first “Last__weekend as a Bobcat” of the semester. Parents weekend brought many emotions and memories along with plenty of opportunities for Bobcats to show their parents a good time.

Outdoor pursuits gave students and parents plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors together with group ziplining and stargazing events throughout the weekend.

Other families opted to do what Bobcats traditionally do when a special weekend rolls around – hit the bars. Entrance queues for many bars were lengthy, leaving many patrons disgruntled. For those who could get in, throwback music could be heard coming out of speakers as opposed to the normal radio top 40 hits. Despite the crowds, many families found a way to entertain themselves with some opting to host controlled parties at off-campus housing.

2. Ohio Athletics
Ohio football and volleyball both held home matches this week to keep parents and students alike entertained. The football team played a very intense game against visiting FCS team Gardner-Webb and came out on top 37-21. The game was the first opportunity of the season for RS FR quarterback Quinton Maxwell to gain some playing time and he didn’t disappoint, throwing for 167 passing-yards and two touchdowns in his Ohio debut. The game was also coach Frank Solich’s 140th career win and the first home win of the season for Ohio.

Indoors, Ohio volleyball came out on top over Buffalo in a thrilling 3-0 win. The win put Ohio 2-0 in Mid-American Conference play for the season and featured Redshirt junior middle blocker Ali Lake lead Ohio with a match-high 13 kills. The match also saw sophomore setter Stephanie Olman distribute a match-high 39 assists for Ohio.

3. Campus Update
With another fun-filled Ohio University Parents Weekend behind us, students look forward to what’s coming up around campus this week.

  • Monday and Tuesday feature the Career and Internship fair in the Baker Center ballroom. The fair runs 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on both days. After Monday’s fair, there will be a “Night of Networking” event starting at 5 p.m. and running until 6:30 p.m.
  • Guest speaker and award winning author/writer Onyeka Nwelue will be in the Multicultural Center Multipurpose (Baker 219) to give a presentation on “What Young Africans Are Writing – An Africa Crossroads event”
  • The OU NAACP and Black Student Union organizations are organizing a plan of action to address what they feel is a lack of accountability when it comes to hate speech around campus following the Tuesday, Sept. 20 incident where the campus’ graffiti wall was defaced with disrespectful language and images.
  • Holzer opened a new clinic uptown last week. The clinic hopes to draw in university students along with anyone else in the area. The clinic is now the third Holzer location within Athens.

4. Feel the burn
This week offers several opportunities for students to get up, get out and get active – or at least watch other people sweat.

  • Ping Center will be hosting its final “Yoga on the Lawn” series on Thursday, Sept. 29 from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The event is free to Ohio University students and those with a Ping membership.
  • Outdoor Pursuits is holding a bouldering clinic for students to come out and learn how to, well, boulder across rock formations on Tuesday, Sep 27 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Ping Center.
  • Bird Arena will be hosting open skate on Tuesday and Thursday. Rec skate is set to begin at 8:30 p.m. and runs until 10 p.m.
  • Ohio Soccer takes on Western Michigan on Friday, Sept. 30 at 4 p.m. at Chessa Field
  • Ohio Field Hockey takes on Central Michigan at 5 p.m. on Pruitt Field
  • Ohio Hockey takes on Kent State in Bird Arena on Friday, Sept. 30 at 7:30.

(Daniel Kubus | Staff Photographer)

5. Tweet of the week

If you did something cool and didn’t tweet about it, did it really happen? Social media is everything nowadays and there’s no better use for it than to show off your friends. This week’s tweet of the week comes from Meryl Hadlock and features her friend Weidner doing something only slightly illegal.

 

Have a great week Bobcats!