ROCK ISLAND, Ill. - There's nothing like getting together with friends, dressing up in Halloween costumes, and throwing pies in people's faces.

Rock Island Arsenal community members gathered after work to enjoy some friendship, food and fun activities during the 3rd annual Family Readiness Group Fall Festival held Oct. 20 at Heritage Hall.

The Army Sustainment Command's Headquarters and Headquarters Company and the Community-Based Warrior in Transition Unit FRG teamed up to hold this event. The FRG provides support and services to deployed troops, civilians and their families.

"The purpose of the FRG is to support the morale and welfare of Soldiers and families," said SherrAfA Culbreath, HHC FRG leader.

The Fall Festival is one of two major events the FRG sponsors each year -- the other being the Spring Fling in June. One of the biggest benefits of the festival is giving Soldiers and their families the opportunity to get together after work.

"It brings a sense of community to the work environment," said Maj. Dan Green, who works in ASC's G-1 (Human Resource Management) office. "You get a chance to interact with others outside of the work place."

Capt. Scott Leifker, HHC commander, agreed.

"Many of our Soldiers live off the installation. This is a great opportunity to bring Soldiers in to be together," he said.

One of the more popular activities at the festival was the pie-in-the-face contest where $1 raffle tickets were sold for a chance to throw a whipped cream pie at a Soldier. Six Soldiers: Command Sgt. Maj. Stephen D. Blake; Col. Richard Dix, ASC chief of staff; Capt. Leifker; Sgt. Maj. Duane Strong, sergeant major of ASC's Distribution Management Center; Sgt. Maj. Lon Culbreath, sergeant major of ASC G-1 and Sgt. Maj. Eric Vidal, sergeant major of ASC G-4 (Logistics), all took a pie for charity.

According to Mrs. Culbreath, $104 was collected. This will help pay for shipping items overseas to deployed Soldiers and civilians, she said.

Other activities attendees took part in were balloon making, ring toss, bean bag toss, bouncy house, cookie decorating, fishing for apples and a costume contest. A disc jockey provided music during the three-hour event that began at 6 p.m.

"The whole family can come. There are a lot of things for everybody," said Green, who has been to each of the past two festivals. "There is no shortage of things to do."

Asked what he liked best about the festival, Leifker said: "The stress-free environment."
Although not as many people came as last year, Mrs. Culbreath was still happy about the turnout.

"I think things went really well. Not as many attended as last year, but things still went very well."

"Our goal is for everyone to have a good time," she said.

Other FRG members instrumental in organizing and helping out with the festival were Linda Ottman, Tracy Brooks, Holly Green, Janette Leifker, and Jennifer Mitchell.


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