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Posted on Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 11:34 a.m.

Mystery hot tub: Who installed the 'bubbler' on the roof of a University of Michigan building?

By Kellie Woodhouse

They called it the Bob and Betty Beyster Bubbler.

Yet a recent unauthorized hot tub installation had nothing to do with the philanthropic couple who recently donated $15 million to the University of Michigan and had the Computer Science Engineering building named after them.

Instead, it had everything to do with a group of mischievous students that decided to pull a prank by installing a hot tub on the CSE building's roof Saturday. And just as it appeared, the hot tub mysteriously disappeared on Monday night.

"People were kind of flabbergasted," CSE spokesman Steven Crang said of the hot tub, which had a wave of visitors Sunday and Monday. "It was obviously unexpected. It was pretty creative and now it's gone. It left a buzz in its wake."

Crang said the group of students responsible is still a mystery.

"It's apparently people who are close to the department because they were able to gain access to the building and install the tub," Crang said, adding that the installation was likely difficult. "The thing that intrigued everyone was that it was on the fourth-floor balcony. It’s a large hot tub and the doors that lead out to the balcony are not real big, so they had to do some work to get it out there."

The hot tub, first reported by The Michigan Daily, sparked a wave of conversation between U-M students on social media, including a thread on Reddit.

"I am in the dude (Duderstadt building) right now, will walk over and check it out here in a few minutes and report back," Reddit contributor fuzzball90 wrote when word of the hot tub first appeared online, later reporting: "It's legit. Working hot tub."

"Can ... can I study in it? I'm not CSE," asked another contributor.

"I don't see why not. I spent an hour in there earlier and I'm Mechanical," fuzzball90 responded.

Images of the hot tub appeared on imgur. That gallery has nearly 144,000 views.

So what did Bob and Betty Beyster think of it?

"They found it amusing," Crang said with a laugh.


Richard Wickboldt

Sun, Feb 26, 2012 : 1:15 p.m.

Good to know there is still humor, innovation and willingness to take chances at the U-M. The people responsible for the planning and execution are the type of future leaders. What we need in this country.


Sun, Feb 26, 2012 : 4:22 a.m.

And here I only thought about having punching bags and kittens in every lounge area/dorm. This is a much better idea.


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 5:52 p.m.

Engineers are famous for these kinds of stunts. That's just how their minds work. At the Air Force Academy, they (we) have a long standing tradition of pulling off outlandish stunts. Majically, one day there was an aircraft wing in one of the dorm rooms. Full size. It took up almost the entire room. This time, though, they didn't remove it. The staff couldn't figure out how on earth they got it in there. Heh, heh. Reminds me of the prank some students at Markely pulled back when the Iranians took our embassy staff hostage. Overnight, all the salt and pepper shakers in the entire dorm disappears. There were pictures posted of sunglass wearing, robed sheikhs with hundreds of shakers in front of them, with demands for their return. Never did get them back.


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 4:27 p.m.

Google Corp. is famous for providing amenities for its employees. Wondering if this prank was an advertisement for a hot tub business. The Hot Tubbing of Tall Buildings Era may have begun! ;-)


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 2:51 p.m.

Potential suspects can be found at maternity wards in about nine months.


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 2:45 p.m.

Is the university going to sell the mysterious hot tub? I'm looking to buy one!

The Black Stallion3

Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 1:49 p.m.

Waiting to see the picture when it was full of beautiful women


Sun, Feb 26, 2012 : 5:05 a.m.

This happened at UofM. You'll be waiting a long time.


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 1:22 p.m.

Creative and hilarious. It is a shame they took it down. It could have been used as a reward for academic achievement. I think the athletes already have whirlpools.

Fat Bill

Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 2:24 a.m.

When engineer's go bad...


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 12:53 a.m.

Hoke IS looking more like Chris Christie every day I notice.


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 9:59 p.m.

Brady Hoke grew too large for his bathtub? Just sayin........

Jimmy McNulty

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 9:17 p.m.

Mmmmm. People soup.

Honey Badger Don't Care

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 9:11 p.m.

I cannot tell a lie: I did it with my hatchet.


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 9:10 p.m.

Another great prank in the spirit of CalTech's 1961 Rose Bowl card show switch <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> or Pioneer students putting a VW beetle on the school's roof.


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 9:02 p.m.

Few years before I graduated from high school the graduating class hoisted a Volkswagen beetle onto the roof in the main courtyard above the library. Several local Big Boy statues showed up on the roof now and then too. Maybe the engineering school can show these science weenies whats up. :)


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 8:57 p.m.

Funny, I thought a &quot;bubbler&quot; was device for transmitting medicinals to the capalleries


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 8:36 p.m.

Sometime soon, I'm sure the whole process will be explained via a youtube video.


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 8:23 p.m.

I LOVE it!


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 7:12 p.m.

Is it too soon for students to begin writing scripts for the soon to be at Hill Auditorium/Power Center &quot;Bubbler on the Roof&quot; musical?


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 6:51 p.m.

Could the mystery hot tub be part of the proceeds from one of the 40 recent home invasions in Ann Arbor? I think there's more to this story than meets the eye...

West of Main

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 7:22 p.m.


Linda Peck

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 6:47 p.m.

I am sorry it is not still there. It looked lovely, nicely done, and obviously would have been most enjoyable!


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 6:09 p.m.

There is a movie titled &quot;Hot Tub Time Machine.&quot; I don't want to give away anything... but there is a hot tub in the movie and some actors you've heard of. If I were going to build a time travelling hot tub it would probably be on North Campus. I'm not saying I did or it was... but it's not there now. Just a coincidence!


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 5:26 p.m.

To quote the late-great Eddie Murphy: &quot;Here I go in the hot tub! Gonna get in the hot tub! Gonna get it wet-ah! Good God!&quot;


Sat, Feb 25, 2012 : 4:34 p.m.

&quot;late-great Eddie Murphy&quot; 0/10... aka FAIL


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 6:56 p.m.

Eddie Murphy's dead?!


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 5:33 p.m.

Heh Heh...James Brown.I was watching that the other day

Eugene Daneshvar

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 5:21 p.m.

LOL! That's almost as funny as U of M's policy on managing conflicts of interest! Isn't it odd that a U of M Spinoff company was acquired for $12 Million dollars last week but it didn't make the news?! Why not? <a href="" rel='nofollow'>;p=irol-newsArticle&amp;ID=1662596&amp;highlight=</a> So funny! Kinda like the hot tub! UM 4204

Buster W.

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 5:07 p.m.

Was there water in it?

Buster W.

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 8:30 p.m.

Yeah, I does look like a little steam. If so, that's even a bigger mystery IMO and should have been included in the story. Water source?


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 7:38 p.m.

The one picture makes it look like there was. It looks fully functional.

West of Main

Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 4:59 p.m.

It's a shame they had to take it down. I guess fun, humor, and spontaneity only lead to lawsuits these days. :(


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 5:08 p.m.

Just like touchdown celebrations in the NFL... I give kudos to whoever had the grapefruits to manuver this thing up stairs and through doorways to get it functioning on the roof. Skyrockets in flight.......


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 4:56 p.m.

Sounds like an Atmospheric Science Department long term and on going experiment as to how water and chemicals released from a warm body of water will either disperse or chemically bond with ambient air molecules. Might hold the key to greenhouse gas emissions.


Fri, Feb 24, 2012 : 4:51 p.m.

The Michigan Difference.