• Fort Riley children enjoy face painting and other activities during the Month of the Military Child festival.

    Lt. Dan Band rocks Fort Riley

    Fort Riley children enjoy face painting and other activities during the Month of the Military Child festival.

  • Actor and entertainer Gary Sinise performs with the Lt. Dan Band during the Month of the Military child concert at the post.

    Lt. Dan Band rocks Fort Riley

    Actor and entertainer Gary Sinise performs with the Lt. Dan Band during the Month of the Military child concert at the post.

  • Children were invited on stage to sing with members of the Lt. Dan Band during a concert at Fort Riley to celebrate the Month of the Military child.

    Lt. Dan Band rocks Fort Riley

    Children were invited on stage to sing with members of the Lt. Dan Band during a concert at Fort Riley to celebrate the Month of the Military child.

  • Actor and entertainer Gary Sinise performs with the Lt. Dan Band during a concert for Soldiers and Family members during the Month of the Military child festival.

    Lt. Dan Band rocks Fort Riley

    Actor and entertainer Gary Sinise performs with the Lt. Dan Band during a concert for Soldiers and Family members during the Month of the Military child festival.

Fort Riley, Kan. - Military Families and community members from the Central Flint Hills Region came together Friday evening at Marshall Army Air Field to celebrate and honor the Month of the Military Child with the Fort Riley MOMC Concert, Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band.

Throughout April, Fort Riley has hosted a number of events all aimed at honoring the unique mission military children are faced with. A mission that includes deployments and new schools

"The Month of the Military Child is an opportunity for Fort Riley to honor the sacrifices made daily by our Soldiers' Families -- the people who endure deployments and rigorous training schedules in support our war fighters," said Col. Kevin Brown, Fort Riley Garrison Commander.

Due to the unpredictable Kansas weather, the festival moved inside a hangar at the air field, but still offered attendees a wide variety of activities to participate in. The festival included free food, informational booths, arts and crafts and live entertainment.

Following the festival, in a separate hangar, Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band took to the stage. They entertained the audience covering songs from bands such as Jimi Hendrix, Linkin Park and Bruce Springsteen.

This is the second year Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band have visited Fort Riley. Last year they performed a welcome home concert for Soldiers in the 1st Sustainment Brigade and Combat Aviation Brigade, both have recently deployed again.

"Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band have a great reputation with our Fort Riley Families and surrounding communities," Brown said. "We are honored to welcome them back to the Central Flint Hills Region for the second year in a row; this performance truly is a reflection of their commitment to our troops around the world."

Sinise performs around 40 shows a year with the United Service Organization - even traveling overseas to perform for deployed troops.

"It's good to be back at Fort Riley. Thank you for having us. It's a perfect show for them (the children). We love when kids are there. It's a family show; we play for a lot of Families and love when the kids are there. I expect the kids to be right up front by the stage having fun," Sinise said.

The intent of the event was to thank Fort Riley Families for their every day sacrifices while also enhancing the partnership between the installation and the Central Flint Hills Region that surrounds it.

The concert and festival also provided an opportunity for families to take their minds off of upcoming deployments or loved ones currently deployed.

"The strength of our Soldiers comes from the strength of their Families," Brown stressed. "It is through quality programs, such as the Month of the Military Child Festival and Concert, that we are able to meet the needs of our Soldiers' Family members while enabling them to thrive and maintain resiliency."

Page last updated Fri April 23rd, 2010 at 22:28