Injustice in Java

In the spring of my senior year, I traveled to Jinotega, Nicaragua on a service trip. While there, I visited a coffee plantation to learn about coffee as one of Nicaragua’s biggest exports. The harsh labor conditions of this plantation were immediately apparent- workers were dirty, exhausted, malnourished, and many had their children in the fields to help the parents fulfill the daily quota. After conducting my own investigation once I got home, I learned that most coffee workers are not guaranteed their basic labor rights. 1 I was torn because I didn’t want to support a business that exploited workers, making them labor under abysmal working conditions, but I still wanted my daily roast. That is when I discovered Fair Trade certified coffee.

Fair Trade certified coffee ensures that the farmers who grow the coffee: “1) are paid a fair price for their harvest and 2) are democratically organized into cooperatives that sell direct to buyers in consuming countries.” 2 The guaranteed minimum price for Fair Trade coffee is $1.26 (US dollars) for Fair Trade specialty coffee and $1.41 for Fair Trade certified organic coffee, whereas the world price for conventionally sourced coffee is around 60 cents per pound. By receiving good and stable prices, small-scale producers in developing countries can achieve job and hunger security and farmer cooperatives can “invest in food, shelter, health care, education, environmental stewardship, and economic independence” 3.  The Fair Trade prices also enable cooperatives to engage in environmentally sustainable ways of farming. Additionally, these agricultural exports are crucial for growth and development of these communities and countries. With such benefits, Fair Trade fosters a socially and environmentally friendly relationship between producers, traders and consumers. And, as a result of all this, the Fair Trade business model ensures quality coffee.

In Nicaragua, I witnessed the harsh conditions of workers who did not receive Fair Trade prices. Coffee worker Blanca Rosa Molina said the difference of Fair Trade prices is “the difference between whether my family eats or does not eat… It means our children can stay in school and that we can have basic health provisions.” 4 According to the International Labor Organization, poverty is the most compelling reason why children work. They report that children contribute “around 20-25% of family income” and their contribution is oftentimes just enough to keep their families out of hunger. 5 In fact, in Sidamo, one place where Starbucks purchases coffee, “over half of children between the ages of 5 and 17 work 30 hours a week on their families’ farms.” 6 By working so much, their education and nutrition suffers. However, many other problems arise. I remember hearing over and over about the problems of child abuse and rape that happens on the coffee fields. Fair Trade business practices, as aforementioned, help prevent these harsh realities.

Despite coffee companies knowing fully about these harsh realities, Fair Trade makes up just 5% of the U.S. coffee market. Many companies feature only a few Fair Trade brews, while the rest are conventionally sourced. For example, the top five selling coffee producers in the US are: Keurig, Folgers, Starbucks, Maxwell House, and Dunkin Donuts. Dunkin Donuts is the only purchaser whose beans are 100% FT certified. Less than half of the coffee Keurig Green Mountain buys is Fair Trade Certified. Only 8% of Folgers and 8.4% Starbucks are Fair Trade certified. Kraft does not use fair trade coffee beans with their Maxwell House products. 7

However, these companies, with Starbucks as the biggest culprit, are able to escape criticism by using similar sounding buzz words, such as “ethically sourced” or “organic,” to try to trick the customer into thinking they are buying Fair Trade certified coffee when they are not. I have observed Starbucks promoting their commitment to buying and serving Fair Trade certified and ethically sourced coffee 8. They make consumers believe that ‘‘Every time you purchase Starbucks’ coffee, you’re also making a difference, helping to improve people’s lives, and encouraging conservation where our coffee is grown’’ 9. They use the label “ethically sourced” to essentially trick customers into thinking they are supporting a socially responsible brand. However, hidden behind the label of “ethically sourced” is a much different practice than the ethical behavior necessary to get the Fair Trade certified labels. The former label comes from Starbucks’ in-house program, called CAFÉ. This CAFÉ program is owned by Starbucks and is therefore up to Starbucks own criteria and standards of whether to label the coffee as “ethically sourced.” Starbucks’ advertising strategy to promote their brand as socially responsible is unethical in the very least.

Since Bucknell is a Starbucks campus, I was curious to see whether our cafes offered any of the few Fair Trade brews on and around campus. I have pleasantly discovered that Fair Trade Coffee is offered in all locations such as Bostwick and the Commons Café. Even the retail locations downtown always have one Starbucks Fair Trade roast a day. Even more agreeably, I have found that this Fair Trade coffee is purchased from a specific coffee plantation and community in Nicaragua. This is all attributed to the Bucknell Brigade, a campus club whose mission is to assist and support of the Nicaraguan people through service trips to Nicaragua, local fundraising efforts, and the importation of Nicaraguan Fair Trade raw beans.

Fair Trade is not only a business model but a global social movement for empowering the poor. Poverty doesn’t have to be an irreparable problem. The Fair Trade business model helps the poorest sectors in the world and it takes on many forms and can be applied to many different products and situations. We can address exploitation and poverty in the global marketplace right here at Bucknell.


  1.  “Coffee the Environment and Labor.” Starbucks / Fair Trade Campaign. Organic Consumers Association, n.d. Web. 18 Apr. 2016.
  2.  “Global Exchange’s Coffee FAQ.” Global Exchange. Global Exchange 2011, 2011. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  3.  “Global Exchange’s Coffee FAQ.” Global Exchange. Global Exchange 2011, 2011. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  4.  Litvinoff, Miles, and John Madeley. 50 Reasons to Buy Fair Trade. London: Pluto, 2007. Print.
  5.  “Working to Help Coffee’s Children.” Tea and Coffee Trade OnLine 2nd ser. 176 (2002): n. pag. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  6.  “Starbucks 2006 Corporate IRRESPONSIBILITY Report.” Justice From Bean to Cup. IWW Starbucks Worker Union, 2006. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  7.  “Does Fair Trade Coffee Cost More to the Consumer?” Equal Exchange. Equal Exchange, n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  8.  “Coffee the Environment and Labor.” Starbucks / Fair Trade Campaign. Organic Consumers Association, n.d. Web. 18 Apr. 2016.
  9.  Ruzich C.M. “For the Love of Joe: The Language of Starbucks.” J.Pop.Cult.Journal of Popular Culture 41.3 (2008): 428-42.

Nature’s Influence on Brain Health

Spring is a time of rebirth – of new beginnings, new goals, and new challenges. It is a time where the budding flowers, verdant fields, and sunny weather makes everyone feel alive again. It also signals the end of the school year, serving as a reminder to do things we always wanted to do. With the view of the Poconos from the academic quad, of the Susquehanna flowing by campus, and of the outdoor patio seating at Bull Run, the lure of the outdoors is ubiquitous. Although our studies are our main priority at college, spending time outdoors actually correlates with better test scores. Research shows that people who spend more time outdoors, are not only calmer and healthier but also smarter.

William Wordsworth preaches this in his ballad, The Tables TurnedHe believes that nature, as the ultimate virtuous influence on the human mind, allows for the manifestation of passionate emotion and thought through intellectual and spiritual development. The speaker in the poem tells his friend to come into the “light of things” and “hear the woodland linnet” because this bird’s song contains more wisdom and beauty than any piece of literature. He believes that Mother Nature, with her “world of ready wealth,” purifies our mind and body and brings sweet lore for our “meddling intellect.” Not only does nature create intellectual enlightenments, but nature also creates spiritual enlightenments, “One impulse from a vernal wood/ May teach you more of man,/ Of moral evil and of good,/ Than all the sages can.” The speaker suggests that the scientific investigation of nature can teach you more about humanity, good, and evil than even a profoundly wise person can – experiences affect the human spirit more than words. At the heart of Wordsworth’s Romantic poem is the insistence that nature and the human mind are suitable companions and all it takes it to “Come forth, and bring with you a heart/ That watches and receives.”

Wordsworth wrote this in the 19th century when a good amount of people still spent more time outdoors. However, studies now show that, compared to just 20 years ago, people spend 25% less time in nature. When we are taking a break from our textbooks, here are some compelling reasons to spend this down time outdoors:

1. Increases concentration skills

one study took a group of children with ADHD and compared their concentration levels after they were split into two groups. One of the groups spent time in outdoor green spaces, and the other group spent time playing indoors. The outside group showed fewer symptoms of ADHD than their counterparts, even while performing the same tasks 1.

2. ignites creative functions

A study published in the Huffington Post found a correlation between nature and creativity. A team of researchers compared a group of backpackers before and after they spent four days on the trail. They found that the “backpackers were 50 percent more creative after they had spent four days on the trail” 2.

3. Decreases stress levels

After just 20 minutes in a natural setting,the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public health has reported, our levels of cortisol, which is a stress indicator, decrease significantly 3. Seattle-based environmental psychologist Judith Heerwagon tells The Huffington Post. “Just looking at a garden or trees or going for a walk, even if it’s in your own neighborhood, reduces stress,” she says. “I don’t think anyone understands why, but there’s something about being in a natural setting that shows clear evidence of stress reduction, including physiological evidence — like lower heart rate” 4.

4. boosts positivity

A study published by the Proceeding of the National Academy of Science says a 90-minute walk through nature can positively affect your brain. The researchers found that, of the 38 participants, the ones who walked through the park and not the urban environment, “showed lower levels of blood flow to the parts of the brain associated with rumination” 5.  (Rumination is a pattern of thought focused on the negative of oneself). There is also the idea that we respond positively to things that are inherently good for us and our survival, “which is why trees and other natural elements can help lift our moods”  1.

5. sparks inspiration

Humans have always looked to nature for inspiration to solve problems. Think of biomimicry such as prosthetic arms inspired by octopus tentacles, the art masterpieces of Claude Monet who was inspired by his verdant surroundings, or engineering feats such as the Japanese high speed trains inspired by the shape of a kingfisher’s beak – nature is the master of inspiring innovation 7.


In the book Positivity: Top-Notch Research Reveals the Upward Spiral That Will Change Your Life, Barbara Fredrickson observes that nature is so fascinating and soothing, that it takes away your mind from other worries. The beach is the perfect example. When I am driving or staring at my computer, I constantly think of my to-do list. My exposure to nature increases my awareness of surrounding and myself, rather than the other thoughts that occupy my day.


In one study, researchers conducted a brief memory test on University of Michigan students who were then divided into two groups. One group walked around an arboretum, while the others walked down a city street. The researchers then conducted the memory test again and the participants who had walked in nature did almost 20% percent better than the first time. The ones who took the urban route did not improve 8.

These seven reasons (among many more) show the powerful connection between nature and the human mind. By spending time outdoors and boosting your brain power, you can spend less time studying and get better grades. With spring finally here, there is no better time to make this change to your lifestyle. Wordsworth got it right – in this “world of ready wealth,” gain the “spontaneous wisdom breathed by health.”



  1.  Wise, Abigail. “Here’s Proof Going Outside Makes You Healthier.” The Huffington Post., 22 June 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  2.  Leader, Jessica. “Nature-Creativity Study Links The Great Outdoors With Positive Psychological Effects.” The Huffington Post., 31 May 2012. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  3.  Roe, Jenny J., Catharine Ward Thompson, Peter A. Aspinall, Mark J. Brewer, Elizabeth I. Duff, David Miller, Richard Mitchell, and Angela Clow. “Green Space and Stress: Evidence from Cortisol Measures in Deprived Urban Communities.” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. MDPI, n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  4.  Wise, Abigail. “Here’s Proof Going Outside Makes You Healthier.” The Huffington Post., 22 June 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  5. Goodstein, Eli. “Stanford University Study Says Spending Time in Nature Benefits Mental Health.” USA TODAY College. Stanford University, 09 July 2015. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  6.  Wise, Abigail. “Here’s Proof Going Outside Makes You Healthier.” The Huffington Post., 22 June 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  7.  “How Nature Ignites Creativity.” THNK The Outdoors Prescription How Nature Ignites Creativity Comments. School of Creative Leadership, 09 Nov. 2015. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.
  8.  Lauren F Friedman and Kevin Loria. “11 Scientifically Proven Reasons You Should Go Outside.” Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 09 Apr. 2014. Web. 19 Apr. 2016

Winter Activities in the Poconos

This article features 5 ski/snowboard mountains and winter activities at 8 Pennsylvania state parks.

Winter is the season of hot cocoa, crackling fires, and wool sweaters. For many, it is a place of childhood nostalgia – of skiing, sledding, and some slightly-mad snowday schemes. And even when the harshness of the weather manifests and the biting air, chills, and darkness perpetuate, winter reminds us of the human warmth. However, while at school, when we take ten minutes bundling up to trudge to class only to discover we forgot a mitten, we often curse this season. Robert Frost’s “Dust of Snow,” is the perfect reminder to us that beauty can be discovered in the brutality of the natural elements. In his short poem, a crow’s wings cause snow to fall upon the speaker passing under a tree, igniting “a change of mood” in the speaker’s heart, “and saved some part/ of a day I had rued.” This fallen snow has enlightened this man to appreciate the small things in life rather than seeing it as a lifeless and bleak season. We can all make our day better by appreciating and taking advantage of this weather rather than snowflakewishing for spring. We just need a push to get off campus and remember all that winter has to offer. Provided is an avenue for outdoor activities during cold weather in the Lewisburg and Pennsylvania area.


BLUE MOUNTAIN SKI AREAScreen Shot 2015-12-28 at 3.55.04 PM

Home of Pennsylvania’s highest vertical descent and the most varied terrain, Blue Mountain is the best mountain to visit to get the most out of a ski day. According to Mountain Snow Corporation, the mountain resort has the highest overall rating for best mountain resorts, for terrain parks, and falls second for best all-mountain terrain 1Additionally, as the East Coast’s leader in snow making capabilities, Blue Mountain guarantees snow days even if the weather does not permit.

Apres ski, kick back on the patio of the Summit Lodge Cornerstone or in the warm, festive atmosphere of Last Run Lounge on the top floor of the Summit Lodge or continue the adventure by snowtubing one of the 39 1,000 long lanes.Screen Shot 2015-12-28 at 3.53.13 PM

Click here for more information.

Location: 1660 Blue Mountain Drive, Palmerton, PA 18071. 1 hour and 50 minutes



Camelback makes up for it’s smaller size with well-groomed trails and turbo-lifts, enabling you to spend more time on the quality trails. Apart from high-grade terrain, this mountain has the biggest snowtubing park in the US. The resort is also 100% lit for night skiing. This resort is ranked fourth for best all-mountain terrain in all of Pennsylvania.

Click here for more information.

Location: Camelback Mountain Resort, 301 Resort Drive, Tannersville, PA 18372. 1 hour and 35 minutes



Blue Knob, as the highest elevated skiable mountain of all Pennsylvania, offers 100 acres of terrain and 42 acres of night-skiing terrain. The longer runs, steeper terrain, and low crowds make this a favorite among the many Poconos mountains… and a best kept secret. Due to the lack of crowds, this is the best place to find fresh powder after a big snow fall.

Click here for more information.

Location: 1424 Overland Pass, Claysburg, PA 16625. 2 hours and 11 minutes.



This premiere Pocono ski resort makes a somewhat small mountain of 600 vertical feet feel large by having spread out trails. The black diamonds are some of the best in the Poconos, getting more advanced as you head towards the west side of the mountain. The glades, scattered between the groomed trails, range from intermediate to advanced and are the best in the region. If you want a good challenge, try the elevator, off the backside of the mountain.

The parking lot, located at the top, influences you to take more and more runs because when you try to call it quits you are already at the summit, so why not take one more run?

Click here for more information.

Location: 357 Big Boulder Drive, Lake Harmony, PA 18624. 1 hour and 23 minutes


xlargeJack Frost’s partner Big Boulder is considered more of the “snowboarders’ mountain” of the two. Jack Frost has longer runs and a higher vertical drop but Big Boulder, about five miles away, trumps Frost with their three main parks: Big Boulder Park, LOVE Park, and Freedom Park. There are various slopes for all levels but the main attraction is the terrain parks. Click here for more information.

Location: 434 Jack Frost Mountain Road, White Haven, PA 18661. 1 hour and 16 minutes

Note: You can get a double pass for Jack Frost/Big Boulder for $350. Just ask alumnus Doug Bogan who went out twice a week and weekends through January, February, and half of March. He claims the pass was “his best Christmas present” yet. Still not convinced? Ask anyone on the Bucknell ski team. Expect to be recruited mid conversation.

**make sure to use College ID for discounts on tickets 

Cross-country skiing, ice skating, hiking, snowmobiling, and more at PA state parks:

 Ricketts Glen State Park


Cross-country ski, snowmobile, or hike through this coniferous wonderland or escape the dense woods to ice skate and ice fish on Lake Jean. The 26 hiking trails offer views of 22 free-flowing waterfalls, diverse wildlife, and a beautiful terrestrial ecoregion of old growth timbers.

Click here for more information.

Location: Ricketts Glen State Park, 695 State Route 487, Benton, PA 17814. 1 hour and ten minute drive.

Bald Eagle State Forest


The Bald Eagle State Forest, named after the famous Native American, Chief Bald Eagle, is 193,424 acres and offers over 200 miles of hiking trails, 300 miles of state forest roads and trails open for snowmobiling, and 24 miles of Nordic ski trails, some beginning at R.B. Winter State Park.

Click here for more information.

Location: Bald Eagle State Forest, T420, Bellefonte, PA 16823. 1 hour and ten minutes away.

Colonel Denning State Park

Alumnus and avid hiker, Doug Bogan, raves that the views from the overlook of Flat Rock Trail, “are are amazing. You can see for maybe 30-50 miles on a clear day!” You can also cross-country ski on the hilly and mountainous terrain to catch a glimpse of these vistas, although there are no formal cross-country skiing trail system. Or skip out on the inclines and ice skate while still admiring the rugged beauty of the mountainous landscape.

Click here to learn more about Colonel Denning State Park.Scenic-Winter-Mauch-Chunk-Lake-Park-PoconoMtns_7749abe7-7213-4056-86d5-ca6cb2ca45b2

Location: Colonel Denning State Park, Newville PA. Click here for detailed instructions. 1.5 hours away

Worlds End State Parktravelers-backpacks-walking-along-road-forest-winter-mountains-view-snow-covered-conifer-trees-60547392

Discover a 20-mile trail network perfect for Nordic skiing in the heart of Pennsylvania’s mountainous landscape. Apart from cross-country skiing, enjoy hiking or snowmobiling through the terrain. The Canyon Vista Trail is a 4 mile loop that challenges hikers with rocky, steep sections leading to a stunning view of the Loyalsock Creek Gorge. Before descending, explore the rock labyrinths adjacent to the vist.

Click here for more info of the Hiking Trails at Worlds End State Park.

Location: 82 Cabin Bridge Rd, Forksville, PA 18616. 1 hour and ten minutes.

Tioga State ForestPAGC_HLO_LLOUS_2

Praised as one of the best rail trails in the North East, Pine Creek Trail, one of the many trails in this state park, offers Nordic skiers a verdantly dramatic 61-mile journey through the area known as the “Grand Canyon” of Pennsylvania. There are also over 170 miles of snowmobile trails.

Click here for more information.

Location: The trail’s northern terminus is on State Forest land approximately one mile south of U.S. Route 6 on the Colton Road near the village of Ansonia (1 hour and 45 minutes). The southern terminus is on Pennsylvania Route 414 two miles south of Blackwell (1.5 hours).








A 15,990-acre park stretching across the Poconos Mountain doesn’t only offer 40 miles of great hiking but has an ice skating, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling. 

Click here for more information.

Location: 3613 State St, White Haven, PA 18661. 1 hour and 6 minutes. Click here for detailed driving directions. 

Raymond B. Winter State Park

For a quick morning and afternoon adventure mid-week, explore this park that is an easy drive from campus. With 700 acres of the Appalachian mountains, this park offers cross-country skiing, hiking (Rapid Run is my favorite), ice-fishing, and snowmobiling. The 300 miles of snowmobile trails leads all the way to aforementioned Bald Eagle State Forest.

Click here for more information

Location: Raymond B. Winter State Park, 17215 Buffalo Road, Mifflinburg, PA 17844. 28 minutes away.

Crystal Lake Ski Center

Recommended to me by the head of Bucknell’s Outdoors Club, Crystal Lake Ski Center specializes in Pennsylvania’s finest cross country skiing. For an additional fee, experienced Nordic instructors are ready to guide you from beginning through skating and racing techniques.

Click here for more information

Location: 1716 Crystal Lake Rd, Hughesville, PA 17737. 1 hour away.  Click here for driving directions.


And if I can’t convince you, maybe William Wordsworth will sway you

The Tables TurnedScreen Shot 2015-12-28 at 4.48.07 PM
Up! up! my Friend, and quit your books;
Or surely you’ll grow double:
Up! up! my Friend, and clear your looks;
Why all this toil and trouble?
The sun above the mountain’s head,
A freshening lustre mellow
Through all the long green fields has spread,
His first sweet evening yellow.
Books! ’tis a dull and endless strife:
Come, hear the woodland linnet,
How sweet his music! on my life,
There’s more of wisdom in it.
And hark! how blithe the throstle sings!
He, too, is no mean preacher:
Come forth into the light of things,
Let Nature be your teacher.
She has a world of ready wealth,
Our minds and hearts to bless—
Spontaneous wisdom breathed by health,
Truth breathed by cheerfulness.
One impulse from a vernal wood
May teach you more of man,
Of moral evil and of good,
Than all the sages can.
Sweet is the lore which Nature brings;
Our meddling intellect
Mis-shapes the beauteous forms of things:—
We murder to dissect.
Enough of Science and of Art;
Close up those barren leaves;
Come forth, and bring with you a heart
That watches and receives.
Any questions? Please email me at


  1.  “Top Rated Pennsylvania Ski Resorts | OnTheSnow.” OnTheSnow. Mountain News Corporation, n.d. Web. 28 Dec. 2015

Miracle on Market Street

A guide to celebrating and shopping for the holidays in Lewisburg

Lewisburg Holiday Activities

Tree Lightinglbrgxmas_06-225x300

On December 3rd at 7 PM, the heart of Lewisburg will be illuminated with season cheer at the annual Holiday Tree Lighting at Hufnagle Park.

Three Free Screenings at Campus Theater

On Friday, catch Frozen with complimentary candy canes and hot chocolate for all! On Saturday, holiday favorite ELF and Sunday, It’s a Wonderful Life will air. If you show a receipt of a purchase you made in downtown Lewisburg over the weekend, you get a free popcorn. The next weekend, How the Grinch Stole Christmas will play, “bringing cheer to all who’s far and near.”

Frozen: 8 PM; Elf: 7 PM; It’s a Wonderful Life: 5 PM; How the Grinch Stole Christmas: 5 PM

13th Annual Art for the Holidays’ Opening Reception at Faustina’s

Waltz through the gallery doors to check out original oil paintings, pastels, and watercolors from nine innovative and inspirational artists.

Show opens at 10:00 AM on December 4th and runs through December 24th (Tues – Sat), 229 Market Street

Strolling music by Cracked Walnuts

“A nutty banjo and washboard duo” will be strolling the grounds of Market Street performing pure American, old time music.

December 4th, 7:30-10 PM.

Late Shoppers’ Night

All stores on Market Street open late – many until midnight.

Danu:  A Christmas Gathering (Celtic Holiday)

Celebrate the holidays with the the acclaimed Irish ensemble, Danú, featuring fiddle, flutes, button accordion, percussion and the incredible voice of Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh.

December 3rd, 7:30 pm, Weis Center

Jazz Night at the Smiling Chameleon

Unwind with jazz artist, Jay Vonada. His smooth-flowing soundscape features melodic and stylish guitars, saxophones, pianos, trumpets.

Check out three of his songs here

December 10th, 2015, 8:00 PM, Smiling Chameleon, 235 Market Street

The fall bucknell dance concert

In a collection of seven dances choreographed by students, faculty, and guest artists, the Fall Dance Concert showcases the technique and discipline of Bucknell’s dancers. According to choreographer and dancer Emily Meringolo, “you will laugh, you will cry, etc. etc.”.

December 4th and December 5th, 7:30pm, Harvey M. Powers Theatre


glowing candles for yogaThe many candles’ light creates a lovely, luminous quality, reminding me of winter and the holidays.

December 1st, 5:30-6:30 PM, Davis Gym, Bucknell

dive In Movie

Watch the holiday classic “Elf,” like you have never seen before – in a pool! Kinney Natatorium will provide free food, drinks, and floatation devices.

December 1st, 9:30 PM, Kinney Natatorium, Bucknell


At this evening cocktail party, learn how to perfect talking about art to make you seem accomplished and worldly at art museums, galleries, and galas (no prior art education needed!). Hors d’oeuvres and beverages will be served. Alcohol available to those over 21.

December 3rd, 5:00 PM, ELC Samek Art Gallery, Bucknell (must RSVP)

And remember to save the date: 2016 Polar bear plunge

Take a icy cold dip into the Susquehanna River. Proceeds benefit the Lewisburg Ice Festival and the Lewisburg Downtown Partnership.

The event will take place Saturday, February 6th at 2 p.m. on the St. George Street Landing. Registration will come out in next few weeks.

Lewisburg Holiday Gift Guide:

(Click name for link to website)

  1. Street of Shops: Classic records, Christmas ornaments, kitchen 20110228_oneDayStory_0001gadgets, and millions of antiques to discover at this indoor country village.
  2. Purity Candy: Over fifty varieties of chocolates such as coconut clusters, peanut butter puffs, and maple cremes to satisfy all palettes
  3. Ard’s Farm: Homemade jams, hand-dipped chocolates, baskets filled with nuts, fruits, and cheeses, and many more inspired delicacies.
  4. Country Cupboard: The acre of shopping features a Christmas wonderland shop; a pantry filled with jams, pottery, tea; and a country shop with old world ornaments, candles, and decorative accessories
  5. Pompeii Street Soap Co.: Handcrafted natural bath & body products featuring gourmet-style soaps, lotions, and body buttershomemade_soap_by_andreeagruioniu-d5cuo95
  6. Black Dog Jewelers: Buy gold, silver, and diamond encrusted jewelry all for the love of dogs! Proceeds go to help forgotten dogs find new homes.
  7. Good Habits:  Handmade jewelry, incense, essential oils, and more
  8. The Gingerbread House: Carries lotions, home décor, glassware, barware, candles and seasonal items (attached to Retrah)
  9. Urban Post: Jewelry, handbags, clothing, scarves, pottery, and more. Don’t forget to check out the gallery in the back!images
  10. Colonial Candlecrafters: Wide variety of candles and candle related items to decorate your home
  11. Advanced Skin Care Spa and Salon: Services include therapeutic warm stone massage, aromatherapy massage, facials, spa packages, and more
  12. And then the frequented Market Street apparel shops of Retrah, Dwellings, Wilson Ross, and Fusion, to name a few

The Future is Now

In this week’s address, President Obama remarked that the world “needs a climate-change deal to protect the planet for our children.” He reminded us that we are responsible for protecting our country, “home to some of the most beautiful God-given landscapes in the world… with natural treasures – from the Grand Tetons to the Grand Canyon; from lush forests and vast deserts to lakes and rivers teeming with wildlife.” Although Obama has made strides in promoting clean energy and lowering carbon emissions, it is not enough if it is America acting alone. This November, countries will come from around the world to the Paris Climate Conference. The goal of the conference is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate. “This planet,” Obama concluded in Pope Francis’ words, “is a gift from God.” We must unite to protect this wondrous, sacred, and delicate world in honor of the past residents’ and for the future generations.

The biggest problem we have is changing our habits to become more sustainable. We can’t keep free-riding on the actions of others. We think that our one little change won’t make a difference, but collectively, it will. Last fall, I worked with the head of the energy department, Steve Durfee, to work on a project to reduce Bucknell’s emission of greenhouse gases. Since Steve began working at Bucknell in 2012, through energy auditing, operations, and research into buildings’ electrical and mechanical equipment, he has reduced the campus’s cumulative energy consumption by almost 73,000 kilowatt hours a year – to put into simpler terms that is equivalent to 72 homes’ energy consumption. Last year, he changed all the lighting to LED bulbs in the KLARC center. This alone saved almost 500,000 kilowatt hours a year, or equivalent to 33 homes. The other day, I met up with him to hear what he has to say about the high consumption of Bucknell’s energy use.

Steve told me about some of the biggest problems he sees on campus. People continually throw contaminated items into recycling bins, “It only takes one plate of spaghetti to ruin everything.” Other problems are plug overload, AC and heat, light and power density. If we could get all the students to be aware of these problems, our university could reduce total energy consumption by 10-15%! What Steve really wants is a mentality and culture where students care because he knows, with exact numbers, the amount of change we are capable of making.

When I asked Steve if he is concerned about future, he answered, “Hell yah! Climate change is a real issue in this country. With our limited amount of resources, we need to make efficiency a priority.” He doesn’t think climate change will affect his life but he believes it will affect his kids and his kids’ kids. Obama hopes that at the climate conference this November, “the world will build on these individual commitmeglobal-warming1-687x687nts with an ambitious, long-term agreement to protect this Earth for our kids.”

Unfortunately, we as human beings are horrible at assessing and responding to risk when something isn’t an immediate threat. We must overcome these psychological barriers and acknowledge no challenge poses a greater threat to us than climate change. So I ask you to join me in the challenge to make a difference. Channeling Obama’s fundamental motif throughout his campaign, let us make “change we can believe in.”


Ways to be sustainable on campus:energy-efficient

  1. Power Down. This includes shutting off lights, computers, and other electronics when you aren’t using them.
  2. Recyle! Use the recycling bins and trash cans properly rather than interchangeably.
  3. Adopt Reusable Bag Practices
  4. Ride your bike (Don’t have one? Rent a Bison Bike here). On this small campus, I swear it is faster than driving and parking.
  5. Save Energy. Turn your heat down a few degrees or AC up a few, your body will hardly notice but the environment will.
  6. Think About Your Water Usage.
  7. Veto disposable items. Nix plastic forks, knives, spoons, cups, water bottles, and everything else that gets tossed in the trash after one use. If you need to get them, buy paper because it is biodegradable. Plastic trash can sit in landfills for hundreds of years before breaking down.
  8. Eat from farmer’s markets. Food grown locally requires less fossil fuels to transport, generating fewer greenhouse gas emissions than conventionally produced food. Also, organic food requires less pesticides and fertilizers used, which is good not only for the environment but for you too!
  9. Support companies that support global warming. Take a look at these companies:

Beauty and cosmetics, food companies such as Unilever, Nestle, and Kelloggs, and apparel. Take a look at Pharrell Williams’ Raw Collection, a streetwear collection made from ocean garbage. Look at 7 other eco friendly fashion brands here. 

  1. Read about the more ways to be sustainable here!


☮ ✌


The Magic of Autumn: Embrace the Ephemeral Beauty of the Season

“Twilights are long, but darkness comes suddenly; the sky turns from dull orange to blue-black before one can take five steps, and with the light goes the last ray of the day’s heat,” Harper Lee’s shimmering description captures autumn, Scout’s happiest season, beautifully. Autumn, to me, has a certain magic. Maybe because it is so fleeting. Maybe because it seems forgotten – lost between summer and winter. Or maybe because it is mother nature’s best kept secret. We all can see the blazing orange and splendid red of leaves, breathe the cool brisk air, and feel the warm light, but only the wise treasure it and are enchanted by the beauty. They are the lucky ones who capture and embrace the mirthful, youthful spirit fall bestows. Like a passionate and ephemeral romance, fall leaves us with memories we long to go back to.

Magnificent landscape photograph captured by my friend Julia Pilzer
Magnificent landscape photograph captured by my friend Julia Pilzer

With the flurry of foliage in this Pennsylvania valley, Lewisburg offers the quintessential autumn experience. We are fortunate enough to go to school or live in such a beautiful area with fall activities everywhere. Carve out time to enjoy a hayride to the pumpkin patch, navigate through a corn maze at Ard’s farm, go apple picking, and, most importantly, bite into those cider doughnuts that taste like childhood. Because, “Oh, let [us] never grow too old to be bewitched by autumn’s gold.” 


Here are some places that offer autumnal activities right by us:

Ard’s Farm:
Heading to the pumpkin patch
Heading to the pumpkin patch

A simple drive from campus, Ard’s Farm has hayrides to the pumpkin patch, corn mazes, a farm full of furry friends, and more.

Hayrides to the Pumpkin Patch: run every Saturday and Sunday from now until October 31st from noon until 4pm. (Must be in line by 3:30.)  Rides are $5.00 per person and includes the pumpkin. Pumpkins are also available for purchase at the market everyday.

Corn Mapumpkinze: Closes November 1st. Open Friday’s from 5-9 PM, Saturday’s from 12-9, and Sunday’s from 12-6.

Location: Ard’s Farm Market, 4803 Old Turnpike Road, Lewisburg, PA 17837 (9 minute drive from campus)

Dries Orchards:

applessKnown for quality and freshness of their fruit, Dries 200-acre orchard yields apples, pears, peaches, grapes, nectarines, cherries and raspberries. After picking and creating a fruit basket of pure ambrosia, be sure  to try their freshly pressed, delicious apple cider and the apple cranberry cider. The cool crisp taste of the apple cider can be enjoyed all year round.
Location: Dries Orchards, 506 West Mountain Road, Paxinos, PA 17860 (27 minutes away)


K Schlegel Fruit Farm:

peachThe 25 of the 75 acre farm “boasts about twenty-five acres in apple production (well over twenty-five varieties) in addition to several acres in peach, sweet cherry, apricot, pluot, aprium (a plum and apricot cross) production.” Besides from variety, the farmers are also committed to growing fruit ecologically, calling themselves “certified IPM, Eco-apple Growers.” Karl and Betsy Schlegel explain, “We live on this farm.  We want to be as safe and responsible as we can. That’s why we work with scientists to reduce our pesticide use as much as possible and still grow top quality fruit.” According to their website, Karl and Betsy have proof of their philosophy. “In 2008, the Schlegels decided to augment their insect monitoring efforts by using mating disruption to control insects on the entire orchard. In one year they were able to reduce their pesticide application by 80 percent.” Basically, hardly any pesticides can be found on the farm and no pesticides can be found on this sustainable farm’s delicious and quality fruit. Additionally, the owners also actually teach you how to pick apples so you don’t damage the trees.

Location: K Schlegel Fruit Farm, 1426 Pennsylvania 147, Dalmatia, PA 17017 (38 minutes away).


imgp2508This twenty-acre property, owned by Professor David Krisjansen-Gural, includes vegetable and perennial gardens, two ponds, and a beautiful, restored farm house and a whimsical historic barn. The huge area right in Lewisburg also has many trails great for walking, running, cross country skiing, or snowshoeing. 

*Note: Must be a member to go

Location: 2099 Beaver Run Road Lewisburg, PA 17837 (Less than 15 minutes from campus)

Some other ideas:
  1. Join an intramural team that plays outside or go as a spectator. This is sure to bring back memories of autumn nights playing soccer or tennis under the lights.
  2. Golf on Bucknell’s beautiful golf course.
  3. Hike (See previous article for locations).


drinkPumpkin propositions: (click for link)
  1. Carve a pumpkin – click here for inspiring ideas
  2. Make a pumpkin cocktail 😉
  3. Roast pumpkin seeds
  4. Make pumpkin piecandle
  5. Whip up pumpkin puree or pumpkin butter
  6. Exfoliate or moisturize with pumpkin body butter… ? Let me know how that goes
  7. Decorate with floating pumpkin candles, a pumpkin serving platter, or look here for 12 other ways to decorate.pancakes
  8. Create a pumpkin air freshener
  9. Feed the earth! 
  10. Or check out Cooking Light’s variety of pumpkin recipes


Apple ideas:

  1. Scour Cooking Light’s 30 apple recipes apple
  2. Like this recipe: Brie, Apple, and Arugula Quesadillas
  3. Or this: Fresh Onion and Apple Soup
  4. Or this: Rhubarb Apple Pie
  5. Refresh your face (apple’s pectin is a natural boon to the beauty routine)face
  6. Make tea light holders 
  7. Stir up an apple cocktail
  8. Create an apple center piece
  9. Make apple spice potpourri 
  10. Or just bite right into it!





From Farm to Table: Support Lewisburg’s Farmers Markets

With fall comes a flood of seasonal farm-fresh produce. The aromatic smells, blazing colors, and energetic atmosphere of farmers markets draws in locals, making the process of buying food an experience rather than a nettlesome task. Although the convenient Weis and Giant nearby carries all the items we could ever need, the chain stores somehow don’t create a feeling of abundance or sense of inspiration like a market does. The plethora of ripe tomatoes settled next to the basil, with wafts of sausage coming from the nearby vendor, calls for a recipe to be made. The fruit section especially, with the pink apples, purple eggplants, white raspberries, fuses into an immaculate color scheme that keeps us reaching for more. Every week, the new set up and produce stimulates our sight and scent differently to inspire a new dish.

The authentic beauty of the bounty reflects the power of nature and a hard day’s work. This old fashioned feel of farming and harvesting is hard to find elsewhere. At farmers markets, people connect with their community. Parents chat over fresh brewed coffee as their children diligently pick out the “best” pumpkin, butchers suggest new cuts of meat to their loyal customers, and bakers entice teenagers with their samples. The market itself is a celebration of life. So, support your local and/or college community and check out these nearby markets!


  1. The Lewisburg Farmer’s Marketfarmers-market-photo1

600 Fairground Road, Lewisburg, PA 17837

Every Wednesday 8-7 PM 

The half indoor, half outdoor, Lewisburg Farmer’s Market has a plethora of meats, cheeses, vegetables and fruit, organics at the peak of their flavor and nutritional content. There’s a wonderful vitality in the food and atmosphere here. Due to the sheer size, you could spend hours here talking to the passionate and knowledgeable farmers and butchers. If you are going to make it to any farmers market in the area, I highly recommend this one. 






2. Susquehanna Valley Growers’ MarketIMG_1281

Brook Park Farms, Lewisburg, PA 17837

Every Friday 2-6 PM

This quaint farmer’s market has about ten to fifteen booths specializing in local products and all IMG_1283things for your picnicking needs. Features include fresh cheeses, apples, vegetables, homemade BBQ sauce, and meats.

For more info, click here.


3. Ard’s Farmers Market

20080707-marketscenela-corn4803 Old Turnpike Road, Lewisburg, PA 17837

Hours: Monday- Thursday 7 AM-8 PM, Friday and Saturday 7 AM-9 PM, Sunday 8 AM-8 PM.

Ard’s Farm is a great union-pumpkinsplace to buy fresh local produce as well as Ard’s own cheeses and other locally made products. Vendors include the family-run Shaffer Farms that specializes in growing hormone and antibiotic-free beef; a local woman’s company, In a Jam, that produces delicious homemade jams, jellies, and pickles; and the Rip Rap Bakery that uses locally grown organic wheat to bake sourdough, focaccia, and more. During the harvest season, take a hayride down to the pumpkin patch to pick out the freshest pumpkins and squashes. And with the Holiday Season coming up, Ard’s displays local wreaths, tress, roping, and greens – all the essentials you need to decorate. Ard’s also has a restaurant, farm, corn maze, and gift shop.

For more info, click here


4. Route 15 Flea And Farmers Marketberries

150 Silver Moon Lane Lewisburg PA 17837

Every Sunday 8-4 PM 

This indoor and outdoor market has over 125 vendor spaces, offering fresh produce, baked goods, candies, and also flea market items such as candles, books, and all types of collectables. The outdoor market is where the best fruits and vegetables reside with fresh melons, peaches, apples, carrots, asparagus, and more. Be sure to check out the Antique Mall at the back of the market that has an array of antique furniture and vintage clothing. This mall is open every day but Tuesdays, from 10 AM to 5 PM.

For more info, click here.


5. Dries Orchards Roadside Produce Stand

Rt. 405 across from the Fence Farmer's Market: Buckets of Apples at Market

Restaurant, Milton, PA 17847

Monday – Friday: 9 AM – 6 PM, Saturday: 9 AM – 5 PM

(Seasonal: May – October)

Located on a country road, this is the quintessential and iconic farmers stand. Pick up tasty tomatoes, sweet corn, crisp apples and even fresh-cut flowers that were just gathered just off the tree, vine or bush that morning.

For more info, click here.


If you are interested in exploring farmers markets outside Lewisburg, here is a guide to Pennsylvania’s farm market and stands: PaPreferred.



Happy hunting,


Get Out and Hike – Great Adventures Await in Lewisburg’s Backyard

  1. Falls Trail

Falls Trail is 3.2 miles of mountainous terrain within Ricketts Glen State Park’s verdant wilderness. falls5Along the climb, catch sight of 18 of the 22 cascading waterfalls, including the breathtaking 94-foot Ganoga Falls. Or, if you are feeling up for it, hike the full 7.2 mile loop that includes both the upper and lower sections. Hikers on this trail should be physically fit, experienced, and wearing appropriate clothing.

Besides hiking, the 13,050-acre park offers an array of activities such as fishing, biking, horseback riding, picnicking, and the winter activities of cross country skiing and snowmobiling. You can spend all day here, or, if you want, pitch a tent and stay all weekend!

Click here for more information.

Trail Difficulty rating: 3.2 mile loop- moderate/ 7.2 mile loop- difficult

Note: The Falls Trail is closed in the winter except for properly equipped ice climbers and hikers.

Location: Ricketts Glen State Park, 695 State Route 487, Benton, PA 17814. 1 hour and ten minute drive.


2. The Mid State Trail

The Bald Eagle State Forest, named after the famous Native American, Chief Bald Eagle, is 193,424 acres and offers over 200 miles of hiking trails and an array of other outdoor activities. baldeagleThe best known trail of Bald Eagle State Forest, The Mid State Trail, grants hikers a breathtaking vista of the Bald Eagle and Rothrock State Forest, across the Lauren Run reservoir, and into the valley beyond. Be sure to wear hiking boots on this difficult trail because parts of the trail consist of hopping from rock to rock. baldeagle2

Click here for more information.

Trail difficulty rating: Moderate/Difficult

Location: Bald Eagle State Forest, T420, Bellefonte, PA 16823. 1 hour and ten minutes away.

3. Flat Rock Trail

Flat Rock Trail located in Colonel Denning State Park was highly recommended to me by a Bucknell alumn, as well as avid hiker, Doug Bogan. “The views from the overlook are amazing. You can see for maybe 30-50 miles on a clear day!” he says. The stunning vista of the verdant Cumberland Valley and beyond is one of the many rewards of the 5.1 mile hike.

Click here for a detailed guide for the hike.

Friend Colleen taking in the beautiful view.
Friend Colleen taking in the beautiful view.

Trail difficulty rating: Moderate

Also be sure to check out the other activities the State Park offers here.

Location: Colonel Denning State Park, Newville PA. Click here for detailed instructions. 1.5 hours away.

4. Canyon Vista Trail

The Canyon Vista Trail in Worlds End State Park is a 4 mile loop that challenges hikers with rocky, steep sections leading to a stunning view of the Loyalsock Creek Gorge. The Penn Department of Conservation and Natural Resources website suggests for hikers to “explore the blocky maze of the Rock Garden adjacent to the vista. A second rock labyrinth is found in the easternmost section of the trail where it runs parallel to Cold Run Road.” And, on the descent, if you are feeling aggressive, try trailblazing straight down to the river approximately 600-800 feet below instead of using the switchbacks.

Click here for more info of the Hiking Trails at Worlds End State Park. canyon2

Trail difficulty rating: Moderate/difficult

Location: 82 Cabin Bridge Rd, Forksville, PA 18616. 1 hour and ten minutes. 


5. West Rim Trail

Deemed the “Best Hike in Pennsylvania” by Outside Magazine, the West Rim Trail treats hikers to  several vistas that overlook grand1Tioga State Forest and beyond. The 30 mile West Rim Trail is just one of the many trails located in Pine Creek Gorge, commonly called the PA Grand Canyon. Don’t worry though – you do not have to commit to the full 30 miles. There are many trails that feed into the West Rim Trail so hikers can explore just a few miles. If you want to commit to the full 30 miles however, 2.5 days is recommended. October is the best time to hike due to the spectacular foliage.

Trail difficulty rating: Moderate

Click here for more information about the West Rim Trail and the other hikes and activities of Pine Creek Gorge.

Location: The trail’s northern terminus is on State Forest land approximately one mile south of U.S. Route 6 on the Colton Road near the village of Ansonia (1 hour and 45 minutes). The southern terminus is on Pennsylvania Route 414 two miles south of Blackwell (1.5 hours).

6. The Pinnacle overlook
Friend and hiking enthusiast Bogan absorbing the beautiful scenery.

Share your birds eye view of Lehigh Valley with the many hawks soaring at the peak of the Pinnacle Trail. According to Hike America, “Many Appalachian Trail thru-hikers claim the views at the Pinnacle are the best views on the Pennsylvania stretch of the Appalachian Trail.” 1  Another striking feature of the trail besides the wildlife and view is the huge boulder formation culmination at the top. Bogan says,  “The boulder formation has a cavity through the entire thing, so you will usually find people climbing the inside of the formation.”

Trail difficulty rating: Easy/moderate

Click here to learn more about the trail.

Location: The Pinnacle Overlook, Holtwood, PA 17532. 2 hours and 20 minutes


If you are looking for a different outdoor activity other than hiking, swing off a 15 foot platform into a refreshing river running through a verdant forest of Evergreens. Or, jump off one of the three platforms, with the tallest measuring about 35 feet above the IMG_1169water. This simple trip to this rope swing was one of the best afternoons I have had at Bucknell.

Location: 524 Pardee Road, Hartley, PA 17845. The GPS will say you have arrived but you need to continue down the street a little more and veer right where there will be a fence and a little path. Park there, walk down the path about 400 feet and the rope swing will be on your left. 35 minute drive.

If you are looking for a quick getaway:

1. Buffalo Valley Rail Trail
FullSizeRender (10)
My favorite running path near campus.

The Buffalo Valley Rail Trail is a 9.2 mile path that stretches between
Lewisburg and Mifflinburg, PA. The flat and open trail right off campus provides views of pastures, fields, farmhouses, the occasional horse and buggy, and lots and lots of corn. Completed just two years ago, the path of asphalt and gravel is great for a bike ride or long run. It runs parallel to Route 45, so at about mile 4 you can traverse off the path to go to FullSizeRender (11)Ard’s Farm.

To learn more about BVRT, click here.

Location: <1 mile away from campus. Go west on 45, turn right on 13th street to find parking and the start of the trail.


2. Turtle Creek Dog ParkIMG_1083

Explore Turtle Creek Dog Park, an entanglement of nature paths that lead to a serene little creek with a Monet-like bridge and picnic table. The fenced in area is a great place to bring your dog, if you are lucky enough to have one, play and run off-leash.

Location: Supplee Mill Rd and Furnace Rd, Lewisburg, PA. 5 minute drive from campus. 

Friend Kate’s dog Clyde enjoying his time off the leash.
Clyde makes a friend!








Sometimes, it may seem like a hassle to schedule one of these outdoor activities into our busy weekends, but the reward is far greater than one would think. Trying something different is when we make the best memories. To quote my favorite Romantic poet, William Blake, “Great things happen when men and mountains meet.”

  1. “Appalachian Trail: The Pinnacle.” Demand Media, n.d. Web. 21 Sept. 2015.

The Cognitive Benefits of Going Outside


William Wordsworth wrote, “The world is too much with us; late and soon, getting and spending, we lay waste our powers: Little we see in Nature that is ours.” In this poem, he portrays a rift between humans and the natural world. We are increasingly losing connection to nature even though it is scientifically proven that we feel better when we bond with nature. Evolutionary psychologist Edward O. Wilson deemed this hypothesis “biophilia” to explain the “instinctive bond exists between humans and other living systems.” Not only are there social, behavioral, and health benefits that the natural world can provide, but there are also immense cognitive benefits from interacting with nature. You can actually improve your academic productivity by taking a break from studying. So, if you need any motivation to take a break from your studies to get outside, you have come to the right place.

Improved Short Term Memory
The Psychological Science Journal published a study done at Ann Arbor found that going for nature walks helps improve memory by 20%.
“University of Michigan students were given a brief memory test, then divided into two groups. One group took a walk around an arboretum, and the other half took a walk down a city street. When the participants returned and did the test again, those who had walked among trees did almost 20% percent better than the first time. The ones who had taken in city sights instead did not consistently improve.”  1

Improved Concentration
In a similar study to the one above, students were divided into three groups. One group took a walk through the city, one through nature, and the rest relaxed. All three groups then took a proofreading test. The nature walkers had the highest score. Researches wrote, “The attentional effect of nature is so strong it might help kids with ADHD, who have been found to concentrate better after just 20 minutes in a park. ‘Doses of nature’ might serve as a safe, inexpensive, widely accessible new tool … for managing ADHD symptoms.”  1

Restored Mental Energy
We have all been that person sitting in Betrand with no life behind our eyes unknowingly staring at a wall and when we snap back into it, we realize a half hour has gone by – well, I know I have atleast been this person. Mental fatigue is a condition manifested by low productivity, alertness, and energy. Just by being outside, we connect to the earth’s energy (how much of a hippy do I sound like right now…but it is true!). The restorative elements of nature boost energy by reducing stress hormones and lowering blood pressure. Studies also show that “sunlight can also increase the body’s production of serotonin, which lifts mood and increases energy.” 3

Enhanced Creative Thinking
German and U.S. researchers found that even just viewing the color green enhances creative performance, so surrounding yourself with lush vegetation could have amazing cognitive effects.
“Participants in the study were either shown the colour green, white, red, gray or blue. After a brief glimpse they were asked to complete a creative task.
For example, in one task participants were asked to list as many creative ways to use a tin can. In another, participants were asked to list as many ’round things’ they could think of.
Their data revealed a strong correlation: participants who were shown a brief glimpse of green had increased levels of creative performance.
Basically, those who saw green came up with more interesting ways to use a tin can and included absurdly round things in their list.” 4
We need to get outside the box in order to see outside the box.

The dock near the Gateways, the farm at Ards, and the bike trail all provide a natural respite. Also, the scenic Susquehanna River that runs through Lewisburg offers a wide array of outdoor adventures that await us before it becomes too cold out. These activities include kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, and more. To learn about some planned activities through emails and meetings, join Bucknell’s Outing Club.


  1. “Friedman, Lauren F. “11 Scientifically Proven Reasons You Should Be Spending Less Time in the Office.” Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 30 June 2015. Web. 07 Sept. 2015.
  2. “Friedman, Lauren F. “11 Scientifically Proven Reasons You Should Be Spending Less Time in the Office.” Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 30 June 2015. Web. 07 Sept. 2015.
  3.  Krusak, Kristen. “9 Energy Boosters.” Real Simple. Time, Inc., n.d. Web. 02 Sept. 2015.
  4.  “Go Wander: How Meandering in the Outdoors Can Enhance Creativity.” Crew Blog. N.p., 24 Jan. 2014. Web. 02 Sept. 2015.