Is there a better way to beat the COVID blues than with a parade? The Mardi Gras festivities on February 11 brought out the entire Fort Hunter Liggett community for a fun-filled evening.
This event was one of many community events organized by the Community Initiatives Group.
“We wanted to do something that people of all ages could enjoy and get behind. The Christmas Parade was a success so we figured a Mardi Gras Parade would also be a big hit,” said Sgt. 1st Class Eric Butler, 102nd Training Division FHL TASS Training Center. “We tried to make it as authentic as possible with floats giving out beads and other goodies to the residents. It turned out to be one of my favorite events on the installation and I hope it continues on for years to come.”
“It was fun. You got to see everybody in the community and we brought the New Orleans flavor to the Central Coast,” said Maj. Christopher Lauff, HHC Commander. Usually one of the planners, he got to sit back in the Polaris MRZR driven by his first sergeant and enjoy as a participant for this event.
For any community engagement to be successful, it requires the expertise and hard work of the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation staff.
“FMWR is always ready to put plans into action!” said a smiling Charlemagne Tertulien, FMWR director. “We always put 150 percent into what we do to make sure the customers get the best experience.”
FMWR served a bevy of Creole dishes, such as fried catfish and dirty rice, crawfish jambalaya and beignets. Soldiers visiting FHL flocked to the special event. The community got out of their homes and offices to witness the parade of floats, military vehicles, motorcycles, cars, and even an old golf cart decked out in purple, green and gold.
“This was one of best events I ever experienced on FHL,” said Sgt. 1st Class James Glass Jr., 356th Logistics Support Battalion. “It was very creative and well executed. My kids and I are looking forward to more exciting events like this in the future. Also, thank you to the chefs, the New Orleans style food was great,”
The post commander, Col. Charles Bell, was the judge for the best parade entry. Placing first for best decorations was the Garrison HHC/Scouts float; the 80th TASS Training Center float came in second; and the Public Affairs Office vehicle came in third. A trophy presentation to winners is scheduled in the near future.