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West Campus: PCC’s Hidden Oasis

Less than 30 minutes from the College, a little-known oasis on Perdido Bay awaits college students who are up for a Saturday adventure. With 260 acres and nearly a half-mile of waterfront property, West Campus provides students with scenic views and a variety of land and water activities.

Students can sail, kayak, or paddleboard across the beautiful Perdido Bay, taking a break to enjoy a picnic along the beach or to grill out at one of the gazebos along the shore. They can also bring their own tackle to fish down by the boat dock or at several inlet ponds found around the acreage. Or they can bring games to play in the open field overlooking the water.

During the winter months, graduate students often hold bonfires at West Campus, enjoying food, fellowship, and nature. Dating outings are also held here each spring semester.

Many students like alumnus Breanna Caruthers (’15) discovered West Campus while taking sailing or kayaking classes at the College. Breanna said, “I took sailing my first semester and loved it so much that I took kayaking my second semester.” She recalls the lazy Saturdays spent on the water, soaking up the sun with her friends. “My favorite thing to do at West Campus was sailing. As a student, I went many times. I even kayaked to Alabama twice!”

For those who like to explore, West Campus provides a safe environment to get a glimpse of the area’s wildlife. PCC faculty Dr. David Barnhart said, “For many months of the year, it’s normal to enjoy frequent dolphin sightings. There’s always a variety of birdlife, from the abundant gulls and pelicans, to the occasional osprey and bald eagle.”

Last semester, senior Drew Carter (NC) went to West Campus for the first time. He said, “I wish now that I had gone my freshman year, and I would’ve gone almost every weekend if I could have,” he said. “There’s so much you can do there, and it’s all free.”

This spring, the College is providing students shuttle services to and from West Campus.

Published 3/14/2016