The seven wonders of Iowa State

Christina Blakley

On July 7, the new seven wonders of the world were announced after a global vote to update the original list written by the Greek poet Antipater of Sidon.

All of the new seven wonders are historical sites that were chosen both for the sheer beauty of their structure and their value to people.

At Iowa State, there are many beautiful historical buildings that represent the beauty and pride of the students, faculty and alumni. Here are FYI’s picks for “Seven Wonders of Iowa State.”

Iowa State Center

The Iowa State Center comprises four buildings – Hilton Coliseum, Scheman Building, CY Stephens Auditorium and Fisher Theater. These buildings host sports teams, music, dance and theater groups and conferences.

Mark North, executive director of the Iowa State Center, said former ISU President James Hilton, who supported the creation of the Iowa State Center, had a vision ahead of his time.

“I’d like to think the Iowa State Center is a real gem,” North said.

North says the four buildings’ architecture is timeless. He said that compared with other universities, Iowa State has a great setup for showcasing arts and entertainment.

When CY Stephens Auditorium first opened in September 1969, it presented the New York Philharmonic.

The orchestra was originally suppose to close their U.S. tour in Los Angeles in September, but then-head of the music department, Alvin E. Edgar, was able to arrange for the orchestra to perform for the grand opening of Stephens.

Lake LaVerne and Central Campus

The wildlife and nature of Iowa State are truly remarkable year-round.

Iowa State’s campus has won the medallion site award from the American Society of Landscape Architects in 1999 and was listed as one of the top 25 most beautiful sites in the book, “The Campus as a Work of Art.”

Central Campus is 20 acres of open land where students can study, take a nap or play a game of Frisbee. Lake LaVerne has a path with several benches along its edge where anyone can sit and watch two of the lake’s permanent residents: the swans, Lancelot and Elaine.

In the original campus layout, an open space was planned in the middle of the campus grounds. That vision has never been put aside, and the open land has never had a built upon.

“I think one of the main reason’s people come to Iowa State is because the campus is so beautiful,” said Trisha Bruecken, junior in communication studies.

Morrill Hall

Morrill Hall stands as a lasting tribute to U.S. Sen. Justin Morrill, who made it possible for Iowa State to become the nation’s first land grant college in 1858. It is one of the eight ISU buildings to be on the National Register of Historic Places.

In 1996, Morrill Hall was deemed unsafe and was evacuated. After undergoing renovations, it reopened March 2007.

Today, Morrill Hall hosts the new Christian Peterson Art Museum, the Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, and the Center for Visual Learning in Textiles.

Friley Hall

Friley Hall first began construction in the early 1900s as a dorm the size of most other dorms of its time.

Since then, Friley has gone under several expansions and has been declared one of the largest dormitories in the country.

“Each construction phase has it’s own personality,” said Peter Englin, director of the department of residence. “There are around 1,100 students housed in it and 24 houses.”

Friley claims 10 different entrances, a radio station and a dungeon (study space) where a dining center was once housed.

“Its size makes it its very own island,” said Stephanie Masta, a Friley hall director. “There is a very strong sense of community here.”

Memorial Union

After World War I, students and faculty of Iowa State wanted a way to remember the fallen soldiers. The Memorial Union was constructed in 1929 in remembrance of soldiers. Today, it honors fallen soldiers from Iowa State from World War I onward.

The Memorial Union was initially run by a corporation separate from Iowa State. It became part of the university in 2003.

No other place on campus can you play pool, go bowling, study, eat and go to the meetings of several campus organizations. The Union also has hotel rooms on the fourth, fifth and sixth floors.

Reiman Gardens

Reiman Gardens is the third location for Iowa State’s horticulture garden. It was created in 1995, thanks to a $1.3 million donation by Roy and Bobbi Reiman.

Today, Reiman Gardens is the largest public garden in Iowa. It houses many smaller gardens such as the Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing and the Helen Latch Jones Rose Garden, which has been presented with the All-American Rose Selections president’s award, an award given for a public gardens with a high standard for rose care and presentation.

“Reiman is unlike anything found at any university in the United States,” said Teresa McLaughlin, director of Reiman Gardens.

McLaughlin said it blends itself by involving both the campus and the city of Ames.

“We are always coming up with ways to save. There are 100 ways the gardens are saving on resources,” she said.

The Campanile

Standing 110 feet high, the bell and clock tower can easily be seen throughout campus. The 50-bell Edgar W. and Margaret MacDonald Stanton Memorial Carillon represents the history and traditions of many generations of ISU students.

Construction began in 1897 and was completed in 1898.

Professor Edgar W. Stanton donated the first 10 bells for the Campanile in 1899 as a memorial for his late first wife, Margaret MacDonald Stanton.

Since then, 40 more bells have been added.

“Campaniling” is a tradition that has been around since the early 1900s. Kissing under the Campanile as it strikes midnight is supposed to make the couple true Iowa Staters.