Entomology Picnics and Football Media Day

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Those are two very different events mentioned in my title, but it sums up the last two days quite nicely. Yesterday I headed to Lock Haven with Gabe for a picnic at the Sieg Conference Center. It was only about 30 minutes away, but it was definitely out in the woods. No cell service, although that was nice for a little bit!

So each year the entomology department has this intensive one-week course that serves to help get the newer students acclimated to the projects they’ll face, how they should do experiments, etc. It’s a small group and they accomplish a lot in five days. On Wednesday of that week they have a cook out and current students are invited. We got to see some of the things they were working on, as well as their “collections”. One graduation requirement for students is to have a collection of specimens. The collections they start during this class can be used as part of that. They only need 10 for the course, but I believe they need to collect a lot more down the line.

The conference center is located along a creek and has ample space for meetings, projects, experiments, etc. If anyone wanted to start collecting spiders, this place would be ideal. There are a ton! Other than those creepers, it was very nice and peaceful.

An example of a collection.

The students cooked a delicious meal and the weather was perfect. Definitely a nice way to spend an evening.

Today was the annual Penn State Football Media Day with over 200 credentialed media members in attendance. It was packed! It started with Coach O’Brien’s press conference, which lasted about 45 minutes.

Coach O’Brien takes questions from the media in the media room at Beaver Stadium.

Then the players arrived. First they headed into the home team locker room in Beaver Stadium to tape video headshots. I was able to see the locker room for the first time and was surprised. While really nice and large, it was sparse. There was nothing on the walls and no giant “S” on the floor. Not sure why, but it was still nice and impressive nonetheless. From there they headed out onto the field and up into the stands for the team photo.

This was before the official photo was taken, but you get the general idea. Getting them set up is always a fun challenge for the staff.

After that the team is released onto the field to take questions from the media. They head to areas designated by position. Meanwhile, the different positions are also getting photos with their specific coaches. It can be a bit crazy to organize everyone and to not forget anyone, but it went really smoothly this year.

It was a beautiful, sunny day in State College. Perfect for media day at Beaver Stadium.

There was a media lunch with the assistant coaches in the Recruiting Lounge and then it was off to practice. The media was allowed to watch the first 30 minutes before it was closed.

Now it’s off to the gym, for a run and then home to clean my carpet. I managed to spill an entire cup of chocolate milk on my living room floor this morning. I soaked up most of it, but it’s milk so you definitely had to do a deep clean to prevent any sour milk smell from developing. It definitely sucked because just two weeks ago I rented a carpet cleaner vac from Home Depot so my carpets were CLEAN! Figures, right?

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