By Sara E. Martin, Army Flier Staff WriterDecember 5, 2013
FORT RUCKER, Ala. (December 5, 2013) -- With the Christmas tree lighting kicking off Fort Rucker's holiday season Dec. 5, the other events scheduled between now and New Year's are sure to light up this festive time of year.
From Christmas Mass to New Year's parties, Fort Rucker has something for everyone, from single Soldiers to couples with children, and representatives from around post are looking forward to seeing Soldiers, civilians and their Families attend these special events.
First off is the Winter Wonderland Skate Night Dec. 6 at the Fort Rucker School Age Center gymnasium. Cost is $2 from 6:15-7:15 p.m. and $5 from 7:30-10:30 p.m. All children under the age of 6 must have a Family member 13 years or older with them. For more information, call 255-9108.
A Christmas craft making activity is Dec. 10 from 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Center Library. Light refreshments will be served.
"We will be making foam gingerbread houses. It is so cute," said Martha McKim, library technician. "It is a good Family affair for the Christmas season. You can make memories and keepsakes for the house that will last forever."
For more information, call 255-3885.
The Commanding General's Holiday Concert will be Dec. 10 at the post theater at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. The show will last around 90 minutes and includes special guests, concessions and sing-alongs.
"It is going to be different than what we have put on in the past. It is a whole new show, with several vocal tunes and special guest singers," said Staff Sgt. Phillip Andrew, senior operations NCO with the 98th Army "Silver Wings" Band. "It will be very large this year, with special decorations and a reading of 'A Night Before Christmas.'
"We like doing this concert because we love to entertain people. This is different from our day-to-day mission. It's just as much fun for us as it is for the audience. Expect a very lively show," he added.
The Fort Rucker Physical Fitness Center will hold the Mistletoe 5K and 1-mile fun run Dec. 14. Cost to register is $20 before Dec. 7 and $25 after. Teams of eight are allowed to run for $120 before Saturday or $160 after.
"This is a fun run that is free for kids, and each participant will receive a medal," said Lynn Avila, fitness programs coordinator. "This is a good Family holiday event -- something that can turn into a Family tradition. It can be a great way to make memories, burn fat and get rid of extra holiday pounds so people can stay on their fitness routine."
Academy gift cards will be randomly given out to three runners, and hot cocoa will be available for runners and supporters. The race begins at 9 a.m. For more information, call 255-2296.
The Ham Shootout at Silver Wings Golf Course will also be held Dec. 14 at 9 a.m. There will be day-of registration for $20 per person, plus cart and green fees. The game is an individual stroke play with prizes going out to gross and net winners.
"It is an annual event to spice up the holiday golfing season. The top winners will get a ham," said Chet Hallman, business manager. "If people walk the course it is a good form of easy exercise and a nice way to stretch your legs."
People can enjoy more than just exercise on Dec. 14. The Landing will host its Breakfast with Santa that morning from 9 a.m. to noon. Families can enjoy a buffet-style breakfast meal with Santa and get a photo with him as well. Cost is $10 for ages 13 and older, $5 for children ages 3-12 and free to children ages 2 and younger. There is also a Family price of $25, which includes two adults and up to two children ages 12 and younger.
"Not only is this event a way to make and capture memories, it's an opportunity in the busiest season of the year to take a seat at the table with Family and friends without the hassle of cooking and clean up," said Rachel Murphy, The Landing promotions and marketing assistant for business operations.
Five Star Catering does its best to ensure that the spirit of the holidays is undeniable with over-the-top decorations, a mouth-watering buffet and friendly servers, said Murphy, adding that the buffet includes items such as eggs, bacon, hash browns, pancakes, ham, biscuits with gravy, assorted fruits and more.
"Breakfast with Santa is an opportunity for the military community to come together, and not only enjoy pictures with Santa, but a breakfast surrounded by fellow Soldiers and Family members. It is events like this one that encourage Families to reach out and meet their neighbors and make new friends over the holidays," said Murphy.
For more information, call 255-2449.
The Fort Rucker School Age Center will host a Christmas Rock and Roll Party at its gymnasium Dec. 17 from 4:30-5:30 p.m. It is free to children and Families who are enrolled in after-school care. The Fort Rucker band "Crossfire" will perform songs of the season. Both events are open to the public. For more information, call 255-9108.
For many, the true "reason for the season" is the celebration of Jesus Christ's birthday, and to honor him there will be several cerebrations at the Main Post Chapel, Bldg. 8940.
The Children's Christmas Eve Mass will be held Dec. 24 at 4 p.m. The Christmas Eve protestant service will be held Dec. 24 at 7 p.m. The Christmas Eve midnight Mass will be held Dec. 24 at midnight. The Christmas Day Mass will be held Dec. 25 at 9 a.m. The New Year's Mass will be held Dec. 31 at 5 p.m.
The Children's Christmas Play, held at Headquarters Chapel, Bldg. 109, will be Dec. 15 at 9:30 a.m. For more information, call 255-2989.
"As we enter the season of Advent, counting down the days until Christmas we rush around shopping for special gifts, decorating our homes, mailing packages and writing letters to Santa," said Therese Erthal, Catholic parish coordinator. "My hope for everyone is that on Christmas Eve we experience the magic of hearing Santa and his reindeer on our rooftops, and on Christmas morning we share joy and peace of the Christ child in our hearts."
Rucker Lanes will host two parties to bring in the New Year and say 'Goodbye,' to the old Dec. 31. The Pin-Down Countdown parties will be held 6-9 p.m. and 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.
The Family Countdown includes unlimited bowling (up to six people per lane), shoe rental for all guests, one large 16-inch one-topping pizza, one pitcher of fountain soda or tea and New Year's party favors. Cost is $50 per lane and reservations are required.
Late-Night Countdown includes unlimited bowling (up to five people per lane), shoe rental for all guests, entree choice for each guest, soup or salad for each guest, dessert selection, one pitcher of fountain soda or tea, and New Year's party favors. Cost is $100 per lane.
The "Great Gatsby" era attire is recommended. People who dress the part will win prizes. To make reservations or get more information, call 255-9108.