Now that there are only six weeks left in the semester, many students feel like they need a break. One could hardly blame them. Since the end of August, Michigan State University students of all majors have seemingly ground out dozens of projects and papers. Midterms happened not too long ago, which was a special time of stress and more stress.
Now, at the beginning of November, MSU students naturally want to leave the business of classes and jobs behind, if for only an hour or two. One great way to mix up the monotony of college life is to leave the dorm or apartment, and appreciate Michigan’s fall colors. Though the Mitten experiences harsh winters, the fall season always delivers fantastic sights when the leaves start to change color. MSU’s campus has an ample selection of prime spots to go to and enjoy the beauty of nature. Here are a few of the best of the best locations to get that fall color fix.
This grouping of trees, found between Campbell and Mary Mayo Halls, might just be MSU’s best-kept secret. Students living in the West Circle dorms may not be fully aware of how scenic this mini forest is. One has to take the paths through the Arboretum to get a full sense of how it adds a golden-yellow accent to the already scenic North Neighborhood. Now that fall is in full swing; these trees have their peak range of colors. One can easily find the Arboretum by exiting the main doors of Mary Mayo Hall and looking for the official plaque that commemorates the trees and the role that William Beal had in establishing the Arboretum. This is a fantastic spot to observe that isn’t too far a walk from the Union or the Main Library.
Beaumont Tower/Library Area
Speaking of MSU’s Main Library, all of the trees in that area offer a breathtaking view of the reds, yellows and oranges that make the fall season so beautiful. The best part about this portion of the campus is the sheer variety in the colors and kinds of trees. With so many different walking paths, any student will feel like they are taking a pleasant stroll through an actual forest and not a bustling college town. Indeed, Beaumont Tower, Beal Botanical Gardens and the Cowles House add to the charm of this area. Also, there are a number of benches scattered throughout the trees that make perfect places for chats with friends or study sessions.
Shores of the Red Cedar River
Perhaps the most prominent collection of trees on campus is located all along the Red Cedar River. Since the river runs east to west from Brody Neighborhood to East Campus, students have miles and miles of trees for their viewing pleasure. The highlight of this stretch of fall colors is near the backside of Bessey Hall. Right by where the MSU Bikes Service Center lies a full-sized deck that juts out into the river. This observation platform gives the perfect vantage to look upon the fire-reds and sunrise-yellows of the trees while also appreciating the river. Other great spots to get photo-worthy shots of the trees reflected in the water include the bridge behind the Main Library and the bridge by Wells Hall.
The last month of the semester can be taxing and overwhelming. Make sure to take a needed break and soak in the view of the trees all around MSU’s campus. There won’t be any vibrant fall colors come winter.
Mark Ostermeyer is a junior studying professional writing and English with a concentration in creative writing. When he isn’t in class, you can find him copy editing articles for The State News. Some of his favorite authors include Tom Clancy, David Baldacci and Barbara Kingsolver. In addition, he loves watching and nerding out about shows like Blindspot, The Blacklist, Survivor and Game of Thrones.