By Andy Beth Miller, Hawaii Army Weekly, U.S. Army Garrison-HawaiiApril 17, 2015
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- Walt Disney once said that "you can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world, but it takes people to make the dream a reality."
Recently, as the sun rose above an open soccer field at Schofield School Age Center, the truth of Disney's wise words were tangible -- seen in the smiles of children, felt through hugs and high-fives, and heard in playful peals of laughter ringing through the early morning light.
The event was PT in the Park, an annual program sponsored by Youth Sports in honor of the Month of the Military Child (MOMC). It created a time and space of celebration, where military parents could bring their children to experience together a small window into their morning PT routine -- with joy.
-- PT "Fantasyland"
Various fitness stations, including hurdles, ladders, cone drills, long jumps, parachute runs and more, vied for the attention of the ecstatic attendees. Moms raced their sons, rolling along a rubber tire. Daddy's little girls ran circles around the fathers, who were wrapped around their fingers. It was a scene straight from Disney, complete with his lovable characters to boot, as well as a few other famous faces.
Minnie Mouse, Elmo, Elsa, Olaf, Dora the Explorer and Captain America arrived to greet and to compete alongside the keiki and their parents, and both parties were wild about it.
"It was a lot of fun getting to come out and do some activities with my son and get active together," said Spc. Brian White, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, of the PT in the Park experience.
Staff Sgt. Alex Deleon agreed, fondly describing the morning spent with his daughter Karla as being "a great way to really bond with the kids."
"I brought (Karla) here today so that she could see what daddy does everyday," Deleon explained, "so that she could be a part of it."
And not only were the children a part of PT in the Park, they were the purpose.
Celebrating MOMC through a magical morning, made possible with the help of make believe and a stellar Youth Sports staff, a community was "made to believe," or at least reminded anew, of the importance of the people and the families behind our armed forces, especially the children.
-- Youth Sports
For the Month of the Military Child, Youth Sports will be hosting PT in the Gym at Fort Shafter Physical Fitness Center from 6:30-7:30 a.m., April 28. Interested parties may call (808) 836-1923 for more details.
-- Month of the Military Child Calendar
> At Schofield Barracks
April 17, 9:30-11 a.m.
Mini Carnival at SB CDC
(Tentative location is Teen Center gym)
April 17, 6-8 p.m.
Teen Choice Awards at SB Youth Center
April 24, 2-4 p.m.
BCDC Mini Carnival at Bowen CDC
April 24, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
Child Luau and Open House in Petersen
CDC parking lot
April 24-25, 7 p.m.-7 a.m.
Operation Megaphone! Worldwide Lock-In
at SB Youth Center
April 29, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
Ice Cream Social at Petersen CDC
April 30, all day
Child Staff Appreciation Day at Bowen CDC
> At Fort Shafter/Aliamanu Military Reservation
April 30, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
MOMC Hallway Party at AMR CDC
> At Helemano/HMR
April 14, 8:30-9 a.m.
Multicultural Day at HMR CDC
April 30, all day
Staff Appreciation Day at HMR CDC