The Past as a Universe of Adventure

By Tom Shakely, October 23, 2012 We tend to like thinking of new ideas and fresh thinking. It’s tempting to imagine we of the present are, almost by definition, at the vanguard of history. We like moving forward rather than looking backward. Yet, we can do both. It turns out that there is much fresh ...

The Origin of the Pennsylvania Groundhog

The Nittany Valley Society’s book “The Legends of the Nittany Valley” presents for the contemporary reader a selection of folk stories first published by Henry Shoemaker in the Altoona Tribune more than a century ago. Candlemas, an American Indian legend first published by Henry Shoemaker in Juniata Memories: Legends Collected in Central Pennsylvania, appeared in print in 1916 and is ...

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Coming Alive

By Tom Shakely, August 2012 The Nittany Valley Society is alive and breathing. It’s a startup nonprofit, led by Chris Buchignani and a board of directors of which I’m a member. Let me share a bit of what we’re about, and what we’re aiming to contribute. Our Happy Valley has been hit hard over the ...

What is The Nittany Valley Society?

By Tom Shakely, April 24, 2012 The language of our mission is hopefully evocative of our organizing principle, but it seems prudent to offer an explanation not simply of our approach to our existence, but also our reason for existing. The Nittany Valley Society is an expression of the ethos of a physical place. It is an expression of affection for ...

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Penn State Veterans Day Address

The following speech was delivered by Dr. Ben Novak on the steps of Old Main at The Pennsylvania State University on November 11, 2009 at the invitation of the Penn State Office of Veterans. Colonel Switzer has just spoken to you on the meaning and importance of honoring Veterans Day. It is given to me ...

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