From stray cats that wander around the Village to emotional support animals (ESAs) and even campus cat celebrities, there is no shortage of felines on Kenyon’s campus. The Gambier community welcomes and adores these local cats wherever they go.
The most famous Kenyon cat is Moxie, owned by Susan Stevens, the pastor of the Gambier Epworth United Methodist Church. A black cat with a white belly often seen sporting a reddish-orange collar, Moxie is well-loved by many Kenyon students, Kenyon faculty and even local community members. Despite spending a large amount of his time in the Office of Campus Safety, Moxie can be found wandering around the campus at all hours of the day, even joining students in their seminar classes. In addition to chasing squirrels on the lawn of Cromwell Cottage or sitting near the Gates of Hell, Moxie is also well-known on campus for his tendency to jump onto the shoulders or backpacks of students who bend over to pet him.
Users from the “Where’s Moxie @ Kenyon” Facebook group often take to the page to share adorable photos of their popular feline friend. “Moxie wanted to get into Palme House this morning!” one user wrote. Others are more concerned about Moxie’s whereabouts. “Where is our Moxie this week? I keep looking for him,” another shared.
Mosey, Moxie’s lesser-known brother, is a brown-grey tabby cat with a white belly and green eyes. Despite being overshadowed by his brother’s fame, those who know Mosey are aware that he is very playful and loving. He loves to roll around on the ground, begging for belly rubs. Mosey is more of a homebody than Moxie, making fewer appearances around campus. When Mosey does make an appearance, he can usually be found on the lawn near the Acland and O’Connor houses.
Perhaps the most elusive Kenyon cat is Bam Bam, a grey cat with yellow eyes and six toes on each of his paws, who spends his days at the Crozier Center for Women. Unlike the man from the Princess Bride, though, he’s not evil. In comparison to Moxie and Mosey’s outgoing personalities, Bam Bam is rather shy. He rarely makes himself seen to people, and when he does, he stays far away from them. Bam Bam spends his days on or under Crozier’s porch, sometimes basking in the sun or on the red couches. If one goes to visit Bam Bam every day (like I do myself), he will begin to become more comfortable, and possibly allow one to pet him or feed him out of one’s hand.
The award for the favorite cat of the semester is an unnamed orange and white cat that has graced the campus with its presence since August. The cat quickly became a Kenyon favorite amongst the students, likely due to its friendly demeanor and personality. The cat made its presence known on campus when it began breaking into Lewis Hall and perusing the aisles at the Bookstore in the evenings. Now that it has cooled off, the cat seems to have gone back home, as no one has seen it in a while. Ocean Wei ’24 is a particularly big fan of the new cat. “The orange and white cat has an owner but he is very adventurous. He once followed us for like a mile on the observatory trail,” they said.
If going out and searching for cats is too time-consuming, the Instagram page @kenyon_cats highlights a number of the campus cats in action around Kenyon.