The bell was refurbished for six months before debuting on Friday.
“It takes a little bit of energy to get it started because that is a big heavy bell sort of like the Liberty Bell. It's big, heavy, makes a lot of noise when it gets going so you got to put a little oomph into it,” Penn State President Graham Spanier said.
It also took a little bit of oomph in the form of $200,000 from freshly minted Class of 2009 Alums to pay for the project, and class leaders love how it all turned out.
“It's a beautiful addition to our campus. Hopefully, it's a landmark that will, you know, be well recognized on our campus for years to come,” Class of 2009 Student Leader Avery Peechataa said.
The bell helped students make it to class on time for 65 years, before it was retired in 1937.
Peechataa wants current Penn Staters to appreciate that tradition.
“All of Penn State has a storied history. That its really awesome to go back, you know, grab something from the past and reinvent it.”
President Spanier said he now has a new place to take a break right outside his Old Main office.
“The Old Main Bell is a great symbol and they did a beautiful job on the plaza I thought. The sound that it emanates is wonderful and everybody is pretty excited about it.”
The clapper has been taken out of the bell, so most of the time it will not be a working bell, but it will be replaced for special occasions.