What is there to do off Dickinson Campus?

By: Alexander Haver


The worst thing about my friends is that they hate leaving campus and doing fun things. I

love leaving campus, being outdoors, exploring, doing puzzles, and playing games; my

passion is cute animals, especially alpacas, dogs and sloths. I compiled a list of fun fall

activities that relate to one of the interests listed above and where you can do them

around Dickinson. They are not prioritized in order because I am too indecisive to rank

the following fun sober activities to do off campus.

What is there to do, how much does it cost, and where is it?

1. Check out Dickinson’s clubs – Ski-Club and Outing Club

Before I start listing some off campus activities, I want to mention Dickinson’s various

clubs and organizations that provide transportation. These two clubs are great at giving

students the opportunity to leave campus. Outing club is one of the biggest clubs on

campus and has many fun and exciting trips. They have numerous hiking trips throughout

the fall, and other outdoor trips such as their trip to a horse ranch, and a wine vineyard,

both coming up in the next several weeks. Outing Club also organizes transportation to

other types of events off campus that are not outdoors, but still really cool, such as a trip

they are organizing to Harrisburg to see comedian Marlon Wayans. This club also

becomes very active in the spring, hosting back packing, rock climbing, canoeing trips

and more. One of the coolest things Outing Club has to offer is its equipment room.

Members of the club can borrow anything from the equipment room, hidden in the

basement of Allison hall. In this room, you can find anything outdoorsy, from a backpack

to canoe paddles. While this room can’t physically take you off campus, it can give you

encouragement to go out and explore! To get involved, look up Dickinson’s Outing Club

to see some upcoming events or email them at outingclub@dickinson.edu.

As it gets colder, the Ski and Snowboard Club is also a great resource for outdoor fun.

The club allows members to buy a season pass to a nearby ski-resort that is subsidized by

the club, which will cost around $190, per person for the year. They take ski trips one or

two times per week, depending on weather and availability of drivers. The membership

includes ski lessons, rentals, and transportation provided by Dickinson. This is a really

good deal, considering this club has ski/snowboard trips for about two and a half months.

My roommate is actually one of the leaders running the club, and had an amazing time

last year as a member. I can’t wait to learn how to ski this Fall! If you are interested in Ski

Club, there is limited space, so sign up as soon as you can! For more information

email skiclub@dickinson.edu. There are also many other clubs that have really cool

activities that can bring you into our surrounding communities, and I would recommend

checking them out at the activities page on the Dickinson website.

2. Tobias Lake – Halifax, PA

Do you like feeding baby goats, camels, llamas, monkeys and more? Do you like learning

about native animals in the area? If you do you need to check out Tobias Lake. I went the

week before classes started and I have to say, it was one of the highlights of my summer.

The park is hidden in a small town called Halifax, about 45 mins away from Dickinson.

The park has a safari tour of over 150 acres of land. When I first got on the safari bus I

was a little concerned because it was clearly a school bus with the top taken off.

I quickly forgot however, as our tour guide began to drive us through 150 acres of

beautiful land where hundreds of animals roamed. My safari guide stopped periodically

and seemed to be very knowledgeable about the animals and the history of the native

ones and their role in American history. The animals here ranged from deer, to American

buffalo and most would approach the bus and politely ask for a carrot, which patrons can

buy at the concession stand. If you want a more exotic or intimate experience, they also

offer numerous cage areas, with exotic animals like monkeys, tigers and mountain lions.

Additionally, they have a petting zoo filled with goats and llamas.

I highly recommend this place; however, they are only open

on the weekends in September and October and are closed in

the winter. For access to the petting zoo and safari, it is around

$13, or $6 for just the petting zoo. For more information look

them up at laketobias.com or call the, at 717-362-9126.

3. Zip lining and more at Roundtop Mountain Resort – Lewisberry, PA

This next activity is for thrill seekers. Mountains and

breathtaking scenery surround Cumberland Valley. At round

top mountain resort, just a 35-minute drive away, they have

zip-line courses available in the fall. The zip line course takes

about 2.5 hours and there are 10 lines and obstacles mixed in.

The price is $69 per person, or $59 per person with 8 or more

people. This is open through the first weekend in November It

is only open on the weekends unless you have a planned group trip, but call to make

sure. While I have not been here before, I have been to similar styled zip lines in the

Poconos, México, and Costa Rica, and from the website, this looks like one of the better

ones I have seen. This course is beautiful, like most, but what sets this one apart is that

they have 10 lines. On the website, they have a go-pro tour. I definitely recommend

watching the Go-pro tour to get a sense of what the course is

like. Another activity they have to offer is paintball every

Saturday and Sunday, which is about $26 per person, plus cost

for paint balls. Round top mountain resort also has skiing in the

winter, and is where the ski-club goes! For more information

go to skiroundtop.com or call at 717-4329631 x3723.

4. Field of Adventures Farm – Aspers, PA

(photo from Field of Adventures website)

Fields of Adventures is great for anyone who loves corn mazes, zip-lines, hill slides and

pumpkin picking, and it’s just a 31-minute drive from Dickinson! I also think it is

important to note that majority of the people coming here may be families with younger

kids, so if you are looking to have fun in a older crowd, this may make you

uncomfortable. On the other hand, if you want to feel like a kid again, this may be the

perfect place for you! They have a huge corn maze that makes out a figure of a knight

slaying a dragon, which is probably the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. The website says that

the maze also teaches you about native animals, but I’m not sure exactly how it works.

Some other activities that look really interesting include hill slides, a swing rope maze,

straw bale maze, a tile maze and barnyard animals. more I

read about this place, the more I want to go and check it out. I

highly recommend some more research on this place and

contact them to learn more about what exactly you might be

interested in. You can check out their website

at fieldsofadventure.com. However, they don’t have a lot of

details of their activities there so I recommend calling them at


Photo from Fields of

Adventure Website

5. Indian Echo Cavern – Hummelstown

Indian Echo caves is truly a breathtaking experience. Although I haven’t had the chance

to go, one of my good friends traveled throughout Pennsylvania touring caves and she

highly recommended visiting here. From what I have seen on their website, the cave is as

beautiful as my friend describes. Additionally, the tours teach patrons about the ecology,

geology and history of the cave. A cool thing about the cave is that it is 52 degrees

Fahrenheit all year round, which allows it to stay open all year round. Another cool thing

about this place is that they have a petting zoo! They have goats, chickens and bunnies,

which is an added bonus to the cave! There is an entrance fee of $18 which includes the

tour. If you are interested, you should check out their website, Indianechocaverns.com, or

you can call them at 717-566-8131. If you find yourself wanting more caves after Indian

echo caves, I recommend looking it up online because there many beautiful caves in


How can I get to these places?

Unfortunately, the places above require some type of transportation, making these places

difficult to get to unless you have a car. If you are interested in getting off campus, I

recommend getting a group of people together and sharing an Uber, or Zip car. Another

way to get to these places would be to talk to club officers who may have members who

would also be interested in taking a trip to one of these places.


In conclusion, there are plenty of fun things to do in the communities around Dickinson.

Not only is it fun to get off campus, but also our community benefits from us visiting

them. Us visiting such places helps economically support these towns, which will in

return, make the community itself more sustainable, and therefore a nicer place for all of

us in the community. There are many other cool activities to do around Dickinson that I

did not have enough space to list. If you are interested in other cool activities or places to

visit off campus, feel free to stop by the Center for Sustainable Living office and grab a

pamphlet. Do not work too hard and enjoy what our communities have to offer.

picture from Indian Echo Cavern website

FAQs about Eco-Reps

Got questions about what it’s like to be an Eco-Rep? Are you an Eco-Rep that may be stuck on planning an event? Not sure what to do next? If you’re looking for answers, you’ve come to the right place! I have assembled several questions I, or other people have asked about Eco-Reps and I’m here to answer them for you.

Q: So what is Eco-Reps? What’s the point of the program?

A: Eco-Reps is a volunteer leadership peer education program for sustainability. The overarching goal of the program is help Dickinsonians gain a better understanding of sustainability and how to connect these opportunities to their lives.

. We represent a number of diverse spaces on campus and we’re still trying to expand. Volunteers engage their communities in a number of ways to educate on sustainable practices.

Q: What are the responsibilities of an Eco-Rep?

A: Eco-Reps don’t have a lot of “required” responsibilities, as it is a volunteer leadership position. Eco-Reps must turn in a place audit every two weeks for their communities and they should attend 3 mandatory meetings per semester and make an effort to attend Sustain IT workshops to further their own sustainability education. Eco-Reps also must host one event or campaign per semester and they can work together with each other and RAs. For more information, check out the responsibilities page for Eco-Reps and take a look at the 2016-17 Eco-Reps Manual.

Q: Why do Eco-Reps have to do audits?

A: The place audits are collected and digitized by the Eco-Reps Coordinator (me) in an Excel spreadsheet and some of that data is used to compare waste habits of various buildings from year to year. However, the audits are mainly for the Coordinator to follow what is happening for the spaces being represented and see whether Eco-Reps are fulfilling their responsibilities. The audits are also to help Eco-Reps think more critically about their place and what they can do to improve different aspects of it.

Q: What characteristics does a good event have?

A: The purpose of the events is to put an Eco-Rep in a more visible position within the community. It allows them to engage directly with the people they represent and educate them about what Eco-Reps do and what non-Eco-Reps can do. A good event is planned far in advance and advertised effectively. Many residence hall Eco-Reps will team up with their RAs to expand their budget and potentially attract more people to the event. Ideas for events can often be difficult to come up with, but there is a list of sample ideas in the manual at the above link.

Q: Who can be an Eco-Rep?

A: Anyone! No, really. This semester we have Eco-Reps in nearly every residence hall and we have student Eco-Reps representing clubs and sports teams. We also have some faculty and staff Eco-Reps as well. Anyone at Dickinson can choose to be an Eco-Rep in almost any space. Spend a lot of time in Rector? Think of becoming an Eco-Rep for the building! We would love to get more clubs and centers on campus involved in the program. If you’re interested in applying for the Spring semester, check out the application online at www.dickinson.edu/ecoreps and email me with any questions at brangwya@dickinson.edu.


Stay green,

Amanda B

A Call to Action: Apply to be an Eco-Rep for 2016-17!

An example of what YOU can do as an Eco-Rep in your community!

We need you, yes you, to apply to become an Eco-Rep. Are you passionate about sustainability? Are you looking for a way to connect with Dickinson? Do you carry a reusable water bottle with you everywhere you go? Well, the Eco-Rep program could be the perfect opportunity for you to grow as a leader.
No longer restricted to the residential halls, the Eco-Reps are now represented across Dickinson. Faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to apply to represent a “place” they feel connected to on the Dickinson campus. The Eco-Reps are a passionate group of peer-educators who are interested in sustainability across campus through community engagement and education.

Our beloved Green Devil showing their frustration with the disorderly recycling in the Adams Hall.

As an Eco-Rep you will…
– Attend CSE’s sustainability workshop series, Sustain-ITs, to learn how to become a peer educator.
– Organize and plan one event per semester, with CSE funding! (If applicable to your “place”)
– Volunteer 3-4 hours of your week engaging with members of your “place”
– Build lasting relationships with people who share similar interests

Sound interesting? That’s because it is!

Applications can be found here. If you have any questions about the application process please reach out to Lindsey Lyons at Lyonsli@Dickinson.edu or myself, Ivy Gilbert, at Gilberti@Dickinson.edu.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Caf Plastics?

As a fellow Dickinson College Dining Service Caf worker and an Eco-Rep, I have notice some small changes we could make with the Dining Service operations to be more sustainable! For one of my shifts I worked at the breakfast bar, refilling the numerous cereal opinions and breads. If you are curious, croissants and plain bagels are the “cool” carbs on campus. After refilling them, I realized there was no recycling bin around the area to put the plastic bags! Normally, all the plastics are placed in the trash, doomed to a life at the landfill. On my shift, I decided to collect all the plastics and bring them to the CSE office to be recycled. In addition, this collection could potentially stress the need for a plastic bag recycling bin in the Caf, not only for the breakfast bar by-products, but also for the plastic wrap used by the athletes for icing after practice. If a plastic bag recycling bin was placed and used in the Caf, the amount of waste going to landfills could (would) be reduced. Small things add up, and can really make an impact. Let’s hope some changes can be made soon!


Jessica Huang, 2019

Eco-Reps 2K16… Roll Out!

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(*Disclaimer out of date Eco-Rep logo photographed)

“New semester, new me” a common phrase you will hear as students wander the Dickinson campus trying to find places to exhibit their passions and make a name for themselves. Here at the Center for Sustainability Education, we provide a platform for students, faculty and staff to become peer educators. Over the weekend we trained and empowered 31 individuals, showing them how they can educate their communities and act as vehicles of change.

Over local pizza we discovered common passions. Exploring who are valuable partners across campus and different pathways Eco-Reps can take to accomplish goals. At the end of the night Eco-Reps were collaborating, proposing creative event ideas and exchanging positive feedback and words of affirmation. Volunteers left training excited to engage their communities.

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Watch out Dickinson College. The Eco-Reps this semester are a strong and clever bunch. You will be seeing them in residents halls, behind the the peddler, even in the halls of the library. What does this say? Well. Dickinsonians are embracing sustainability.

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Interested in partaking in peer education and being a contributing member of a supportive and active community? Consider becoming an Eco-Rep for something that means a lot to you. Have a favorite academic building? Become the Eco-Rep for that area. Bothered by your floor mates poor management of the recycling bin? Become an Eco-Rep. That simple.

Application can be found here @ http://www.dickinson.edu/info/20052/sustainability/2977/eco-reps/3

The current list of Eco-Reps can be found on our website as well: http://www.dickinson.edu/info/20052/sustainability/2977/eco-reps/5

Sustainably yours,

Ivy Jo

Turning Pintrest into a Sustainability Project

D.I.Y. Dickinson, a phrase that plastered Dickinson campus from the bathroom stalls to the side of the HUB. D.I.Y. or Do It Yourself embraces a born again arts and crafts movement that challenges individuals to make practical items using their own hands. D.I.Y. projects were made popular through Pintrest, an upbeat website filled with clever crafts using household items. The Eco-Reps saw just how popular Pintrest has become and decided to combine quirky crafts with upcycling. Upcycling and crafts are worthy bedfellows as the materials traditionally seen as waste, with a little bit of effort, can be transformed into treasures. As it can be seen, waste minimization is valued here at Dickinson.

On November 18th the Eco-Reps teamed up with the Makery; an artistic space founded on providing students the materials to make, along with WDCV the voice of Dickinson College and took to Britton Plaza with the goal of showing the campus just how easy it is to make cool things from waste items. Activities included were warping old records into bowls, transforming broken mugs into planters, turning unwanted Tee-shirts into totebags, and a plethora of jewelry crafts using e-waste. The Eco-Reps and their co-sponsors over the course of the two-hour event saw a wide demographic of students , faculty, and staff engage in the activities and leave with smiling faces.

Later that night The Center for Sustainability Education hosted a Sustain IT Workshop in Landis House with Jasmin Parra ‘17, visiting as part of the Eco-League. Parra taught a group of seven how to crochet used plastic bags into bags. The group was comprised of students and staff who by the end of the night all left with a new skill and perspective on the value of items destined for the landfill.

The success of these two events only reflects the willingness of the Dickinson community to learn how to live sustainably. As a person who grew up turning old paper cups into cootie catchers, watching people who had never considered a broken mug a treasure have that epiphany made all the work leading up to the event worthwhile. The message of D.I.Y. Dickinson goes beyond making fun trinkets, and on November 18th students and faculty took time out of their day to embrace sustainable creativity.

If you enjoyed upcycling, check out the Makery a space that exists year round to foster sustainable art.

Reinventing Eco-Reps: Sustain It Workshop Series

When asked “who are the Dickinson College Eco-Reps?” the popular opinion on campus is “that one kid who takes the compost out in my dorm, right?” Wrong. Eco Reps are so much more.

The Eco Rep program highlights empowered and educated individuals striving to become peer educators across campus. Get lost there? Not a problem. This year The Center For Sustainability Education is rolling out a new program for the Eco-Reps; reinventing the way the campus views the volunteer habit changers. As part of the program, “Eco-Reps” now encompasses students, faculty, staff, clubs, organizations, special interest housing, offices, sports, etc. It is a no-brainer. The mission of the program is to try and educate the campus on sustainable practices in an attempt to change habits, why not create an inclusive environment for anyone with a green bone in their body to become an empowered leader?

The program is two months in and Dickinson is responding well. A series of lectures have replaced mundane meetings notorious for sucking the fun and motivation out of the passionate student body. These lectures are titled the “Sustain It” workshops and highlight frequently asked questions, misconceptions, and even help students turn programming into effective campus climate changers. Our first workshop was on October 21st and was titled “Single Steam Recycling: The Whole Story” helping Eco Reps AND non-Eco-Reps understand where the recycling goes and the process Dickinson is tied into.

What is Single Stream Recycling, Dickinson asks? You know in the HUB how there are different sized slots in the recycling bins, one for paper, plastic, glass? Single Stream Recycling says that the material does not matter for it all goes to the same facility! Those traces of food in the bottom of the parfait container? No worries the facility we partner with is sophisticated enough to overcome the left over gunk. We learned in the workshop that the waste goes from Dickinson’s facilities (when the large bin is full) to Waste Management in York, PA or Waste Management in Philadelphia, PA. From here the materials are sorted and then sold on the recyclables market, nifty.

Cardboard is a different story. When collected and broken down the corrugated cardboard is taken to Project S.H.A.R.E., a local food pantry, where is it bailed and sold on the market. Profits are then used to buy food for the pantry and waste is turned into a way to alleviate the stress of poverty on the community.

Second guessing what you can and can’t recycle, we can help you there as well.

The campus is well postered and on these posters/ stickers it is outlined what should go in the bin. This applies to composting as well. While Eco-Reps should not be known for being the kids who take the compost out, it is still one of their responsibilities. Composting is BIG on campus, with all the collected food waste being transported to the Dickinson Farm for compost.

With all this information now at the hands of those who attended the meeting (and you by extension), where do we go from here? The audience was asked to answer reflection questions and come up with personal goals for spreading the word. The community members came up with some clever ways to address the problems with education such as “Educate First-Years through mandatory orientation workshops,” “Educate R.A. staff and other members with influence,” “Personally become an active advocate.” All fantastic action statements to hear from a newly empowered audience.

In conclusion, the next workshop will highlight how to program in a way that leads to action and will be held on the November 8th in Kaufman 178. Swing by and join the movement.

Here is a link to the powerpoint from the presentation, check it out:

Sustain IT- Recycling

Energy Challenge 2015

2015 Dickinson Energy Challenge Announced: March 16 – April 6, 2015
The 2015 Energy Challenge is being hosted March 16 – April 6, 2015. The theme of the challenge is Spark the Change, and the goal is to reduce energy consumption across Dickinson’s campus. We are striving to reduce our emissions, by changing behavior to reduce electricity consumption. A residence hall competition will be hosted between 15 buildings (starting 3/16) to see who can reduce their consumption by the greatest percentage from baseline data. Prizes will be awarded for greatest reduction (electric heat & non-electric heat). Change your Facebook profile pic to show your commitment, come to our events throughout the challenge, and support the weekly themes:
  • Week 1: Unplugged
  • Week 2: Do it in the Dark
  • Week 3: Power Down and Go Outside
Kickoff Event: Desserts in the Dark, March 16, 7:00 pm on KW Lawn
Finale Event: Bonfire, April 10, 8:00 pm on Morgan Field
We can do this Dickinson. Do you have WATT it takes?
Check out the Energy Challenge Promo Video:

Contact sustainability@dickinson.edu for more information.