So I took these pictures around campus about a week ago and I still haven’t posted them. I thought it would be a good idea to do that tonight. Basically, I just roamed around campus at about 7:30 PM on Friday and Sunday evening and snapped some photos. Now, you’re really only going to see a very, very small fraction of the entire UND campus in these photos, but, even though, I thought they’d provide some sort of glimpse into what my new surroundings look like.
All of the photos were taken in the portion of the campus where the majority of classes are held, so that’s why no other souls can be seen hanging around in the grass or along the sidewalks. It’s actually pretty peaceful for me to walk around this part of campus at around 7:00 or 8:00 PM since I really like all of the flowers, trees, buildings, etc. It’s too bad the sun will be setting at around 5:00 PM every night before very long, though.
Before I present the pictures, I wanted to note two things I’ve observed. First, I still really like the library here, but my fondness for it grew even more today after I discovered that it has a small exhibit center dedicated to telling the story of Grand Forks’ history. The exhibits aren’t necessarily exhaustive, but do nevertheless educate anybody who spends a minute or two looking them over as to what this area of North Dakota and Minnesota is all about.
Now the second point I wanted to make is that I really like the building called “The Memorial Union,” but colloquially just “The Union.” This is one of the newer buildings on campus, having been built as a result of the devastating 1997 flood. Incidentally, even though the university is no less than 2 miles away from the Red River, it still was affected by the floodwaters. Most of the university’s buildings had water surrounding them, which can be seen in the completely renovated and remodeled basements that a lot of the structures have around here. In fact, the flood has seemed to have a cathartic effect on the city of Grand Forks; it’s hard to find a run-down house around here since it’s apparent that they all have brand-new windows and siding.
Anyway, The Union is a 3-story (with basement) building that I suppose you could call a student lounge. The basement floor houses the Terrace Dining Center, my favorite, and most restaurant-like, of the three on-campus dining centers. There is also a computer lab, game room with pool tables, TV lounge, barber shop, Great Clips, and equipment rental area down in the basement. The second floor, meanwhile, has a huge “lecture bowl” and ballroom. But the first floor is the best one. It pretty much reminds me of an airport concourse, but instead of being a place where travelers spend an indefinite amount of time lounging in between flights, it’s a place where a bunch of students spend an indefinite amount of time lounging in between classes. The first floor is anchored on one end by the Old Main Food Court, which is where you go if you want to get fast food on campus (but even then, the only chain restaurants available are Sbarro and A&W; the rest are independently-owned operations). The other end of the first floor contains an internet café, The Stomping Grounds coffee shop, and “The Loading Dock,” which is basically a TV lounge/place to sit down and drink your coffee. In between these two ends is a large hallway that has, in the middle of it, comfortable couches and chairs and large screen TVs. I think there’s even a gas fireplace that you can cozy up to in the winter. There is also a convenience store, a U.S. post office, a printing/copying center, an information center, and other offices for campus programs and organizations on the first floor.
The metal figure is "The Soaring Eagle" and is in the middle of a garden that features only plants native to the original prairies that made up the area
There are also a lot of flower gardens on campus
Some more flowers -- too bad they'll all be dead in about a month
This snake-like figure is actually a monument dedicated to the people who attended UND during The Great Depression
This is the newest fixture on campus this year -- a small little tone plays at 15 and 45 past the hour, the Big Ben jingle (the same as what is played on the half-hour in Brainerd) plays at 00 and 30 past the hour, and "God Bless America" plays at 8 AM, 12 PM, and 8 PM
This is Twamley Hall, where all the administrative offices (registrar, tuition payments, etc.) are
There's also a Coulee that winds its way through campus -- quite a beautiful stream
The good-sized Grand Forks railyard is, literally, right next to the UND campus
This parking lot belongs to one administrative buildings; you can see just how close the yard is to the sounth end of campus
The sun even started to come out as I was taking pictures
This is one of the bridges crossing the coulee
This is the bridge pictured above and its reflection in the coulee
There's even a little waterfall along the coulee
This old building (built in the 1920s or 30s I'm guessing) is Merrifield Hall and is where my German class is located -- on the third floor, some 100 stairs up
The eternal flame, powered by propane, stands on the site of where the first building on the UND campus was built
This is one of the one-way roads right in the thick of the academic halls
This is Witmer Hall, where all math and physics classes are located
The UND Wayfinder
One more shot of the coulee in the sun