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A Northwest student lies in a hammock near Centennial Garden. The campus now features four hammocks that provide a place for students, employees and visitors to relax. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

A Northwest student lies in a hammock near Centennial Garden. The campus now features four hammocks that provide a place for students, employees and visitors to relax. (Photo by Todd Weddle/Northwest Missouri State University)

Sept. 21, 2018

Northwest adds hammocks to campus landscape


The residents of Northwest Missouri State University, as well as those who visit the campus, have a new way to relax under the shade of its trees with the addition of four hammocks.

The hammocks, located adjacent to Centennial Garden and Colden Pond, were added to the campus landscape this month through a partnership involving Northwest’s School of Health and Wellness, its campus recreation program and Facility Services.

“Northwest has many places for people to relax and enjoy our surroundings,” Dr. Matt Baker, Northwest’s vice president of student affairs, said. “Our landscape team does a tremendous job of identifying and cultivating a sense of place across our campus. We wanted to make it easier for students, faculty, staff and visitors to stop, take a breath and enjoy the beauty Northwest has to offer.”

Baker noted that research suggests people who take a few minutes each day for reflection on positive things in their lives tend to be happier and have a greater sense of well-being, adding that Northwest students and employees are not immune to the stressors and anxiety levels others face.

“We offer counseling services for students and we have an employee assistance program to help our faculty and staff, but research on well-being suggests that small efforts like taking a walk, sitting in a hammock and talking to friends can have a positive impact on mental health and well-being,” Baker said.

Additionally, hammocks are increasing in popularity on college campuses. Northwest students have brought hammocks to campus, but the University does not allow them to be attached to trees because of damage they could cause to trees and the Missouri Arboretum.

The DoubleNest hammocks are attached to 11-gauge steel posts and can be removed, allowing students, employees and visitors to attach their own hammocks to the posts.

This year, Northwest is celebrating the 25th anniversary of its designation as the state of Missouri’s official arboretum. The campus is home to more than 1,700 trees and more than 160 species cultivated from throughout the world. Three trails – the Gaunt Trail, Tower Trail and Chataqua Trail – traverse the campus to help visitors learn about the trees and get an up-close view of them. To learn more about the Missouri Arboretum and the commemorative tree program, visit www.nwmissouri.edu/arboretum/.


For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468