By Sgt. 1st Class Rhonda M. Lawson, 3rd Sustainment Brigade PAOSeptember 30, 2011
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Early morning Commissary shoppers found themselves dodging speeding baskets Sept. 21, but it was all in fun.
Twelve teams from units across Fort Stewart participated in the second annual Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers Commissary Sweep. The event, based on the popular TV game show "Supermarket Sweep," involved Soldiers guessing the prices of store items. The top three teams who guessed the most prices had an extra 10 seconds per item added to their sweep time. The teams then raced through the aisles to find products based on clues throughout the store. The teams also had the option of keeping the items they picked up in the sweep.
"The main goal of this activity is to let Soldiers know how inexpensive the Commissary is so they can come in and know how to shop and how they can save money," said Spc. Alex Skinner, the BOSS vice president.
"We wanted to participate in this because we wanted to make sure that the Soldiers are aware of the benefits that are out there for them," added Steven Young, the Commissary Store Director. "It's an over 30 percent savings to them, and a single Soldier can save up to $1,500 a year by shopping at the Commissary."
The Commissary Sweep has become a popular event among single Soldiers. Last year's event earned the Fort Stewart BOSS program second place and $750 for Best BOSS Event at the 2011 International BOSS Conference held in April in San Antonio, Texas. The program is aiming for a first place win for next year.
"There were a lot more games last year. This year, we're making it simpler," Skinner said. "We're also making the prizes more entertaining. We have $1,500 in prizes."
Door prizes included anywhere from sports drinks, to goody bags, to MP3 docking stations. The winning team, Pfcs. Malcolm Flenoury and Brett Williams, who represented the 3rd Sustainment Brigade, Third Infantry Division, received MP3 players and sound bars, while the second place team, Spcs. Dwayne Jackson and LaQuan Carpenter, representing the 3rd Military Police Group, received digital cameras. Spcs. Brittney Duncan and JaLisa Kemp, representing Dental Command, received laser printers.
"I wanted to participate to do something different," said Spc.Duncan. "I can't believe I actually won; I lose everything!"
Private first classFlournoy admitted that he was surprised as well. He and Pfc. Williams had made a late decision to enter the sweep, but their strategy of having Private first class Flournoy run the sweep paid off.
"It was tiresome, but I was glad I was able to use my God-given talent," he said.
Jackson, who's unit moved to Hunter Army Airfield from Fort Gillem a few months ago, added that he foresees a different outcome for next year.
"First place went to Fort Stewart and second place went to Hunter, but next year, we're going to flip that around," he said.