First Team throws fest for Families
November 4, 2009
FORT HOOD, Texas - All the rain last month not only helped postpone the 1st Cavalry Division's original Fall Fest date, but it also dumped much-needed water on the parade field that would be have hundreds of children pitter pattering all over it Oct. 30.
More than 800 families scattered Cooper Field, to enjoy an evening with other Family members during the division's Fall Fest.
"The Fall Fest went great; you can tell by the amount of people," said Jenny O'Rouke, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade's Family Readniess Support assistant of Florence, Ky. "It was a lot more than we expected - more than double."
With Fall Fest a day before Halloween, most of the children showed up with their costumes on. For those who didn't, the Division Special Troops Battalion set up a face-painting booth.
O'Rouke said the fest took a lot of coordination between different Fort Hood and community organizations.
The division's organizers tasked each of the division's brigades, the DSTB and the Horse Cavalry Division with setting up games and activities for the Families. Then, several different Fort Hood area businesses helped out with food and other items. Bush's Chicken restaurants, of the greater Killeen area, provided food for everyone. HEB Grocery Store provided hundreds of pumpkins for the children to decorate. Peaceable Kingdom provided the popular bouncy castle for the children.
Fort Hood's United Service Organizations helped organize the event and played a movie on Cooper Field at the end of the festivities.
"Fall Festival was an exceptional event for Families of the First Team that showed unity - not only among the division, but other originations and businesses in the community," said Robin Crouse, Fort Hood's USO director.
Many of the Family members, who are expecting their loved ones to return from deployment very soon, came out with children to have a good time with other Family members.
"It was just nice to be able to be out with Families," said Jennifer Smith, of Bartlesville, Okla., whose husband is in 2nd Brigade Combat Team. "We had a great time tonight and [I] just want to say thanks for putting it on."