Abbey Pond


The Abbot Pennings Squires played our football games across the river, at St. Norbert College's Minahan Stadium - Home of the St. Norbert Green Knights.  (A Squire is a Knight's assistant, which is how we got our name.)  The stadium was just off of Broadway, on the grounds of the St. Norbert Abbey.  Conveniently (or inconveniently if you were a freshman) located next to the stadium was a small body of water known as Abbey Pond.

In this 2009 view, the shores of Abbey Pond appear to be well groomed.  There's even a nice path down to the water.  Not so in 1981, when I was a freshman.  Back then it was surrounded by weeds and trees, and the pond itself was slimy and murky from rotting plants and leaves that had fallen in.  I don't remember an island either, but it may have been there.

It became somewhat of a tradition over the years for upperclassmen to round up freshman after football games and toss them into the pond.  By the 1980s, the administration was attempting to crack down on this behavior, and I can kind of see their point.  After all, this happened in the dark after football games, and no swimming credentials were verified before one was tossed in.  The prudent freshman was careful not to mouth off to seniors in the week before a home game, and many frosh would leave a couple of minutes early to avoid the swim.

 

Eric Elfner
February 2009

 

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