PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. - Installation employees had the opportunity to tour the homes of Picatinny military families during a Picatinny Military and Civilian Club-sponsored holiday homes tour here Dec. 8.

Sixty-seven individuals attended the tour, which consisted of four historic homes, as well as three newly constructed residences. All the homes were festively decorated for the holiday season.

The historic homes included the Picatinny commanding general's residence, which was constructed in 1909 for around $41,500, as well as homes dating back to 1884. While the buildings serve as military residences now, two were used as offices in the past and one even served as a Rockaway Township school during World War I.

In addition to the military residences, Picatinny's historic Olde Forge Chapel, which was originally constructed in 1911, was also on the tour. The chapel served as an ice house, storehouse, blacksmith shop and a bachelor's officer's quarters before it was converted into a chapel in 1975.

PMCC president Amy Hrdy, who lives in a historic home with her husband Col. Russell J. Hrdy, said she enjoyed opening her home for the tour because it allowed employees a glimpse into Picatinny housing.

"I've lived here on post for seven, going on eight years, and each of those years I've opened my home to Picatinny employees who work with my husband for at least one holiday party per year," she said. "I had many comments in those years that coming to my home was the first time many of the employees ever got to see the inside of the homes here. They drive by them everyday and they enjoyed seeing them on the inside."

Hrdy said the tour also served as a fund-raiser for the PMCC, which plans special events and activities to earn money for programs in the community, such as the Picatinny Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation.

PMCC membership is open to Department of Defense civilians employed at Picatinny and their spouses, as well as active-duty, retired and Reserve military members attached to Picatinny and their spouses.

Page last updated Mon December 29th, 2008 at 12:38