Troops' families get the chance to earn their "spurs" at Family Spur Ride
October 2, 2013
ROSE BARRACKS, Germany -- There was excitement in the air as the Soldiers of 2d Cavalry Regiment, Dragoon Ready Reserve and their families walked in front of Reed Museum on Rose Barracks, Germany, to sign their children up for the day's activities at the 2013 2CR DR2 Family Spur Ride on September 28, 2013.
The enthusiasm was a welcome sight to the Soldiers due to the amount of work that was put into the event for the families.
"We had a group of individuals sit down with (the DR2 commander) and decided that we wanted to put on an event for the families," said 1st Lt. Peter Uthe, assistant operations officer for DR2. "We discussed what traditional events occurred during the actual spur ride and tried to tailor those toward the children."
Some of the activities included a modified physical fitness test, weapons assault-simulation lanes, obstacle courses and museum scavenger hunts.
"We gave each squadron a broad plan and they each developed that plan and made each and every lane their own." said Uthe.
Throughout the day there was an abundance of smiles, laughter and parents encouraging their kids to do their best as they competed in the different events.
"You can't walk around without seeing a kid holler and scream and look like they are having a lot of fun," said Uthe. "Kids really do enjoy the obstacle course and the medical lane as well as the weapons assault course, where they get to fire blank ammunition from the M4 carbine service assault rifle and the M249 light machine gun."
With the weapons assault course being one of the most exciting of all the activities, some kids found themselves enjoying other aspects throughout the event a little more.
"My daughter enjoyed the medical aspects of it. Everything from taking care of a casualty to loading the casualty onto the stretcher," said Cpl. Sarah Jones, human resource specialist. "She also really enjoyed the camouflage station, too."
Even with all of the fun and good times shared, safety still played a big role in the way the activities were planned out for the children.
"In all of the events, I think we had enough oversight from soldiers to make them safe for all age groups," said Uthe. "Safety is always paramount in planning these events, especially, when there are family members and children involved."
By the end of the day, a good time seemed to have been had by all who attended the spur ride, from the young to the young at heart, alike.
"I think it gave my children an overall view of both weapons techniques and safety," said Jones. "It was really informative for the children.
While agreeing, Uthe also said DR2 was surprised at the success of the spur ride.
"We were pleasantly surprised that there were almost 300 children out here participating today," said Uthe. "And I am glad that all of the families wanted to come out here and see what their mother, father or spouse, do for a living."