Nittany Valley Press

Nittany Valley Press offers a special collection meant to foster a spirit of community across time for Penn Staters, Central Pennsylvanians, and friends. Nittany Valley Press encourages an appreciation for the history, customs, and spirit of Central Pennsylvania’s Nittany Valley, the Pennsylvania State University, and nearby communities, offering select works that might serve to not only to welcome newcomers through an encounter with an historic spirit of place, but also as a means to conserve and perpetuate a lively, evergreen, and affectionate attitude toward Happy Valley as a place unlike any other.

The Pennsylvania State College 1853-1932: Interpretation and Record

Erwin W. Runkle, Author • George T. Henning, Jr., Foreword (409 pgs, Sept. 2013)

Although Dr. Erwin Runkle wrote this history of Penn State during the 1930s, only now is it widely available through The Nittany Valley Society’s first-time publication. His meticulous reconstruction of the University’s birth and growth—from the revolution in American education that sparked its founding to its establishment as Pennsylvania’s land-grant college—brings the Penn State story to life with a rare blending of keen attention to detail and uncommon warmth. Runkle’s opinionated, but affectionate narration offers a revealing vision of the Nittany Valley’s rich past.

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The Legends of the Nittany Valley

Henry W. Shoemaker, Author • Christopher Buchignani, Foreword
Dr. Simon J. Bronner, Contributor (245 pgs, Jan 2013)

The legends appearing in this work are only a small part of the total number of American Indian legends collected by Henry Shoemaker. They are chosen for their relation and proximity to the Nittany Valley. Most are within less than an hour traveling time, and are easily visited. Some are mythical sites, but there is enough information in the legends to actually locate where they are situated. But most of them are actual historical sites with markers. Visiting all of them will take you on journeys into places where story and history, imagination and myth, as well as timeless feelings merge. Encounter the spirit of the Nittany Valley. Drink from the same fountain of experience from which so many before you have been nourished and fortified. Share these stories to pass along a knowledge of the spirit that was here long before any of us arrived. It will still be here long after we pass through.

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Conserving Mount Nittany: A Dynamic Environmentalism

Tom Shakely, Author (180 pgs, Jul 2013)

In presenting the first complete history of Central Pennsylvania’s most famous mountain, Tom Shakely pieces together the story of Mount Nittany as perhaps the most famous symbol of The Pennsylvania State University and the Nittany Valley. “Conserving Mount Nittany” tells the story of the physical and cultural environment from which a spirit of both affection and protection for the Mountain has been evident from the time of the American Indians into the present. A book packed with anecdotes, observations, and reflections, “Conserving Mount Nittany” delights as a conversation on how to cultivate a spirit of magic in the midst of a practical age.

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Is Penn State a Real University? An Investigation of the University as a Living Ideal

Ben Novak, Author • Tom Shakely, Foreword (130 pgs, Mar 2012)

On its surface, the question posed by this work seems ridiculous. Yet its thoughtful exploration by Dr. Ben Novak, a four-term former Trustee, reveals that there is far more to the answer than one might first imagine. “Is Penn State a Real University?” is an insightful meditation that presents a grounded, evergreen vision for students, alumni, townspeople, and professors everywhere.

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The Birth of the Craft Brew Revolution

Ben Novak, Author • Ken Hull, Foreword (325 pgs, Jul 2012)

It’s 1984, and in America’s “Happy Valley” one local attorney is confronting an Orwellian dystopia in beer. Only five years have passed since the lifting of the prohibition against home brewing, and America’s palate atrophies from commercial sameness. Dr. Ben Novak presents his complete collection of 71 columns first published in the Centre Daily Times on the joys of beer. As fresh and accessible now as then, this collection will especially delight the student who loves its effects but is dumb to its essence and all those who think of beer as little more than another amusement on the adventure of life.

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Back to Camelot: The Improbable Story of the 2005 Nittany Lions

Chris Buchignani & Kevin Horne

Explosive freshmen. A smothering defense. A relentless senior captain at quarterback. And a legendary molder of men standing on the sidelines. When one of college football’s most storied programs teetered on the brink of irrelevance, one improbable, magical Autumn would restore the trappings of America’s Game to the nation’s quintessential college town. From four downs at Indiana to three overtimes in Miami, this book presents the definitive account of Penn State’s 2005 football season. Availability TBA.

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Reminiscences of Dr. F.J. Pond

Dr. Francis J. Pond, Author (45 pgs, Jan 2013)

Dr. Francis Pond recalls the lively era of growth and change at The Pennsylvania State College spear-headed by President George W. Atherton, sharing memories of life on campus and covering topics like the establishment of fraternities, clubs, and literary societies, selection of the school colors, student pranks, compulsory chapel and military drills, and the college football scandals of the day. He paints a vivid picture of a place both foreign and familiar. Dr. Pond speaks to us across time through this short, but riveting, account of Penn State in its formative years.

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Nittany Valley Press books also available for perusal in Robb Hall at Penn State’s Hintz Family Alumni Center, The University Club’s library, and short term lending through Penn State’s Pattee/Paterno Libraries and the Schlow Centre Region Library.