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Weber Murphy Fox helps Penn-Mont Academy Celebrate New Outdoor Education Environment

IMG_0510State College, PA — On September 5th, 2014 Penn-Mont Academy held an open house and ribbon cutting ceremony on their main campus in Hollidaysburg, PA. Weber Murphy Fox (WMF) was on hand to participate in the celebration and tour the new 2 acre “Learn, Play, Grow-Naturally” Outdoor Education Environment, for which WMF provided Landscape Architecture services.


Penn-Mont Academy was the first licensed Montessori school in Pennsylvania and, for over 50 years, has been providing children with a quality Montessori education. Penn-Mont’s main campus is located in Hollidaysburg with over 250 students from toddler age through sixth grade. In 2010, a satellite facility to serve preschool and kindergarten students was opened at Penn State Altoona, Ivyside Park. WMF provided Landscape and Architectural services for this Altoona facility as well.


“Being outside is fun,” said WMF Senior Associate Robert Lingenfelter, ASLA, APA, LEED AP. “The natural environment can be challenging, stimulating, and inspiring. The physical, emotional and intellectual benefits of connecting children with nature are numerous.” Outdoor Education Environment Improvements at Penn-Mont include a teaching pavilion, collection tables, stepping stumps, learning circles, native plants, a natural rain-garden, a kite field, and interconnected meandering pathways for exploration.


Last year, Robert served as a co-speaker on the subject of open-space assets with Tracey Coulter, Agroforestry Coordinator with the Bureau of Forestry, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The presentation introduced attendees to the benefits of physical contact with nature. Illustrations of project opportunities in daycare facilities were discussed including the use of natural elements and native edible plants to enhance outdoor play spaces.