Unique PT event earns top Army prize for Kaiserslautern BOSS
September 8, 2008
KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany - You won't find knocking out 50 sit-ups between eating cookies, bananas and pickles, and drinking juice and milk on any Army physical fitness test. However, such endeavors did help the U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern Better Opportunities for Single Servicemembers organization win honors - best event for large-sized installation - during the Army's BOSS forum in Washington, D.C., Aug. 8.
Sit-ups were one of seven events at the Kaiserslautern BOSS and Commissary Appreciation Day held here in May. This was the third year that the Kaiserslautern BOSS program and the Vogelweh Commissary have co-sponsored the event.
"We do it for Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors and Marines," said Connie Tallon, the Vogelweh Commissary store manager, who, with the Kaiserslautern BOSS president at the time, initiated the event.
Besides the best-event award, the Kaiserslautern BOSS also took home second place - out of roughly 20 competitors - for best program in its category.
"Our program is literally run by the Soldiers," said Spec. Joshua Crawford, the Kaiserslautern BOSS president, when asked why he believes the program garnered these honors.
He added that it's the Soldiers who bring the ideas for community service or recreation to their BOSS representatives, who in turn take it to the organization's council for a vote.
Kaiserslautern's BOSS represents several thousand servicemembers, and its more than 100 volunteers earned about 4,000 community-service hours this year, said Crawford.
Founded in 1989, BOSS is a three-pillared organization that helps single and unaccompanied Soldiers with recreation and leisure, community service and well-being issues. The BOSS program, in most Army communities, stands for Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers, but because of the unique Kaiserslautern military community demographics, the name was changed locally to Servicemembers about 10 years ago to encourage members from other military branches here to take advantage of the same opportunities afforded to Soldiers.