Sound the Bell: a unique behind-the-scenes look at OSU’s Victory Bell tradition

COLUMBUS, Ohio

To ring the Victory Bell stands as an Ohio State game day tradition dating back to the 1950’s. The university grants the co-ed service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega the honor of being the only students on campus permitted to go up inside the tower and ring the bell.

OSU bell ringer Kaitlyn Cox said, “I think it’s a really big deal that we get to keep this honor. We’ve had it for a really long time, and it’s such a special tradition seeing everybody and having them look up at us and it’s so awesome to be able to see everybody’s name up on the wall that graduated before us getting to ring the bell and keep the tradition going.”

Located inside the southeast tower of Ohio stadium, the bell sits 150 feet above ground and weighs over 2000 pounds, so the physical act of ringing it stands as no easy task for the students.

Julia Aminov, a senior at OSU said, “If you hold on too tight, you can pretty much fly up with the bell, that’s what happened to me my first time.”

The chimes of the Victory Bell can be heard nearly five miles away, so some bell ringers opt to wear ear protection up in the tower.

The students ring the bell for 15 minutes after a every Buckeye home victory and for 30 minutes after a win against Michigan.

So many traditions surround game day at Ohio State, and throughout history, very few people have gotten the chance to venture up inside the bell tower at The Shoe.

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