Riley Scott

Enjoying Athens’ Ambience


How to explore and appreciate the Athens outdoors

Riley Runnells / Asst. Culture Editor

Arguably, the most appealing fact about Athens and Ohio University is the atmosphere. Any time or season, Athens is one of the most gorgeous places to be. When the weather is nice, going outside and enjoying the outdoors can be a great way to stay in shape, bond with friends or take a break from studying.

To get the full OU experience, it’s important to go outside and enjoy the beautiful scenery the campus has to offer. There are plenty of ways for students to spend time enjoying the outdoors, but here are the top four ways students can stay active and unwind with nature:


Hammocking is probably the most common outdoor activity for college students anywhere, but the hammocking scenery at OU is unmatched by anywhere else. Students usually get a hammock, find the perfect spot between two trees and stay there the rest of the day. It’s perfect for relaxing, studying or sharing with a friend.


Anthony Warner | FOR THE POST

Ohio University senior Morgan Beard reads while in his hammock in Emeriti Park on Wednesday, April 17, 2019.

Kate Wray, a sophomore studying nursing, has always loved hammocking and takes any opportunity she can get.

“I love hammocking because it’s so relaxing, and it’s a great way to bond with friends,” Wray said. “You can also study while hammocking because it’s such a calming environment, so hammocking has multiple purposes. It’s my favorite outdoor activity.”


Though Ping Center is a good gym for people to exercise in, it’s much nicer to exercise outside when weather permits. Students can walk or run on the Hocking Adena Bikeway, a trail that runs past campus. Activities can be done alone, with friends or with on-campus exercise groups.

One exercise group on campus is Changing Health, Attitudes, and Actions to Recreate Girls (CHAARG), a women’s exercise group that focuses on female empowerment. A lot of its workouts are outdoors to ensure participants can enjoy nature at the same time.

Jadyn Dubach, a sophomore studying child and family studies, joined CHAARG her first semester of freshman year, and loves it more than any group on campus.

“I joined CHAARG to stay in shape and get out more, but I realized it was a great way to make some of my best friends,” Dubach said. “It’s so fun to go outside and get workouts done with a group of strong women.”

Bike rides and rollerblading

The Hocking Adena Bikeway is a great place to people-watch, walk or run, but it can also be a great place for students to ride bikes or rollerblade. The trail is 21 miles long, so it can be hard to experience the whole thing when running or walking. Biking or rollerblading are great ways to stay in shape and make the most out of the trail experience.

“Being outside is a good way to relieve stress...It creates a refreshing environment, especially after being cooped up in class and in the dorms.”-Michaela Reynolds

Claire Geary, a sophomore studying journalism, thinks biking and rollerblading are the perfect way to connect exercising with nature and enjoying the outdoors.

“Rollerblading and biking, especially in Athens, is a great source of activity and exercise, but also especially visually pleasing because of the natural sights,” Geary said. “Not only is it healthy for students to be involved, but they can enjoy the views of the good weather.”

Blissful Blanket Lounging

If students don’t own a hammock or don’t feel like exercising, a relaxing day-nap on a blanket is the way to go. Laying outside on a blanket to study or hangout with friends is always a good option, but it’s also a fun way to people-watch and take a nap.

There are many spots to set up a blanket and lounge around, like College Green, but a great spot for people-watching is behind South Green by the river. Students can see the trail, the river and have a beautiful nature experience while taking some time to unwind.

Michaela Reynolds, a sophomore studying child and family studies and criminology-sociology, loves relaxing on a blanket outside to unwind and recharge after a lot of stress from classes.

“Being outside is a good way to relieve stress,” Reynolds said. “It creates a refreshing environment, especially after being cooped up in class and in the dorms. So I love spending time laying out a blanket and hanging out with friends.”


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