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If you ever find yourself with an extra 30 minutes, I have just one piece of advice for you: Head down to Shoemaker Green, and just take it in.

If you ever find yourself needing an escape from the confines of DRL, scoot on over to Shoemaker Green.

And if you ever find yourself interested in uninterrupted green space, but the walk over the bridge to Penn Park seems just too daunting, stop your journey short at Shoemaker Green.

But if you are looking for a reason to go to a Penn football game on a Saturday afternoon and need more convincing than what we’ve already given you in the spaces of this paper — or, like Sandy Hingston believes, you can’t do anything social these days without drinking — you may want to double-check the rulebook.

While Shoemaker Green allows the use of “light active recreation such as Frisbee, jogging or children’s sports,” prohibited use includes alcohol and grilling — except with a permit — and gambling, hazing and public urination.

Permits and exceptions will be granted on a case-by-case basis but “only for those events where an overwhelming majority of those reasonably expected to attend an event are of legal drinking age,” according to the Shoemaker Green Facility Use Guidelines.

Before football games, if these exceptions could be granted, Shoemaker Green looks to be an incredible space to tailgate with friends and student groups.

What’s slightly problematic, however, is that the facility is operated by Penn’s Facilities and Real Estate Services, not the Penn Athletics department. While this is a matter of the donor’s request for use of the space, it sure doesn’t expedite or ease the process of reserving space for pregame use.

That’s not to say students and groups won’t gather on their own without a permit, risking whatever repercussions may follow as a result.

But to formally reserve a space in Shoemaker Green for a group, you must do so at least 30 days in advance. From there, if approved, a meeting must take place at least 15 days from the scheduled event with the renter and FRES, and finally a rental contract must be signed at least 10 days from the event.

That’s quite a hassle.

My advice still stands: Make use of Shoemaker Green. It is absolutely gorgeous and officially opens Sept. 20 at noon — check it out if you’re not in class during the Thursday afternoon reception. Seniors for the Penn Fund kicks off next Saturday evening in the space.

But when Penn football opens up their home season next Saturday against Villanova, it’s still unclear if students will have the opportunity to take advantage of the space.

If anything, though, head down this weekend. We’ll have perfect weather for a game of Frisbee or a picnic or even a nap.

But beware — your cooler and drinks are subject to inspection.

MEGAN SOISSON is a senior health and societies major from Mechanicsburg, Pa., and is Senior Sports Editor of The Daily Pennsylvanian. Her email address is


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