Brilliant Stories

Tuesday Trails with Terri: University of Illinois Quads

January 7, 2020

Having survived the holidays, but eating one two many treats along the way, I was thrilled for an unseasonably warm and sunny Tuesday for my first Tuesday Trails of the year. January is quiet, with 45,000 of our population out of town for winter break. It seemed like the opportune time to head to the University of Illinois campus, where the sidewalks would be clear and I can run the campus without dodging people along the way.

Since I graduated school 20 years ago, the campus has changed dramatically in some ways, and also remained the same in other respects, bringing me back to my days walking the Quad between classes. Today's run was a reminder of how beautiful our campus is, from new architectural wonders and public art, to those buildings that have stood for 150 years. 

I started on the far North end of campus, with the impressive Beckman Institute to my back.  The Electrical Engineering building is one of my favorites on campus. It has such a unique design and public art surrounding it. This newer statue, The Quintessential Engineer, by artist Julie Rotblatt Amrany, is dedicated to the women engineers of the University of Illinois.
Crossing over to the Bardeen Quad, there is a lot of construction happening in this area, such as the new Geothermal Campus Instructional Facility. You can learn more about the this sustainable design here A scenic spot on the Bardeen Quad, whether it's winter or summer. I've watched many drone races over this area during the annual Engineering Open House No visit to campus complete without a visit to the Alma Mater outside Altgeld Hall.
Lovers be ready. The Eternal Flame on the Main Quad is the spot to kiss to see if your love is eternal! On the South end of the main Quad sits Foellinger Hall, home to many shows and events, and for me, those Econ 101 classes that I could barely stay awake in at 8am. The University has a massive library system, with our Undergraduate library immediately South of the Quad. It's built underground, as the saying always goes to "not throw shade on the corn" of the Morrow Plots.
The most southern Quad leads to the College of ACES, with the McFarland Bell Tower, where over 500 songs are programmed on the bells. The ACES library is one of the most unique libraries on campus, with its octagonal shape. Heading back North you'll find the Campus Observatory, built in 1896. Today's blue skies would lead to an amazing starry evening.
It's great to be back running in the new year. I hope you can continue to join me on these adventures and pass along your ideas! Comment on our Facebook page for suggestions on where i should run next!

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