By Mark Heeter, USAG Schweinfurt Public AffairsMarch 10, 2008
SCHWEINFURT, Germany - The U.S. Army Garrison Schweinfurt is one of 14 garrisons in the Army and the only one in Installation Management Command-Europe selected to receive funding for the Warrior Adventure Quest.
Warrior Adventure Quest is a pilot program designed to provide high adventure-type organized group activities - such as paragliding or hang gliding - for Soldiers returning from a deployment. The Army Family Covenant earmarked approximately $120,000 for the pilot program which is scheduled to kick off this summer and is channeled through the outdoor recreation center.
"This is a program designed to help Soldiers returning from combat zones to give them an adrenaline rush...in a safe, controlled environment," said Dave Luellwitz, USAG Schweinfurt business recreation division chief. "We've been allocated $120,000 to invest in equipment, programming, training and, we intend to start the program here in Schweinfurt around the June timeframe."
To determine what activities would be offered, deployed Soldiers were given a survey to identify how they would like to see the money allocated.
"On that survey, they were four or five activities that were selected as their biggest priority, what they would love to do the most when they get back," said Christian Hofstetter, USAG Schweinfurt outdoor recreation center manager.
Paintball, rappelling, white-water rafting, cycling, canyoning, rock climbing and paragliding were among the top choices. In Schweinfurt, the plan is to start off with paintball and expand from there. Rock climbing is also locked in, Hofstetter said, noting that the Army has a good natural-rock site and professional instructors in the nearby Rhoen.
"The highlight is, as we plan it, we have a one-time trip for three days, where we have 30 people going into Austria or Switzerland," to participate in canoeing, paragliding, and river rafting, Hofstetter said.
Schweinfurt officials have yet to finalize how participation will be coordinated, although a plan is in the works.
"Our intent is to have participation tickets produced that we would hand out to all the units, commands. They would then distribute those to their Soldiers as they become available. That's our plan," Luellwitz said. "It's not going to be first-come, first served. It's something that will be channeled down through the units."