The Gum Tree, one of Ball State's well-known landmarks, formerly sat east of Pruis Hall. Sam Hoyt, DN File
Gum Tree: sticky past, tragic ending
The gum tree, located east of Prius Hall, was a familiar landmark on Ball State’s campus.
Students, staff and visitors left their mark by adding their own piece of gum to the bark of the tree. What started with a few pieces led to a trunk displaying hundreds of wads of gum.
There was much campus conversation around the tree in 2013 when rumors spread about its possible removal. Kevin Kenyon, associate vice president of facilities at the time, denied the rumors of the gum trees removal.
However, it wasn’t long before the gum tree saw its end.
The second weekend in May of 2017, the gum tree was removed during the creation of a new pedestrian and bicycle path. The tree, which would have stood in the middle of the new path, was removed, leaving a stump in its place.
“I was sad when I found it’d been cut down,” Katelyn Mooney said in a previous Daily News interview. “It was kinda gross, but it was a landmark and was on my Ball State bucket list to put gum on it.”
And even though the tree has disappeared from campus, its presence lives on thanks to social media.
The account @BSUGumTree, which was created right after the removal, takes a comedic approach to the event by tweeting through a first-person view of the gum tree. The account additionally documents campus attempts to create a new gum tree.