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Posted: February 1, 2018 12:52 p.m.
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Hunter garrison leadership awards excellence


The Hunter Army Airfield Garrison Command Sergeant Major, Command Sgt. Maj. LaVandar Wilkerson and Hunter Garrison Commander, Lt. Col. Kenneth Dwyer, pose with ACS staff member Pam Phillips after awarding her the Army Achievement Medal for Department of the Army Civilians. Phillips was the action officer during the holiday toy drive that provided toys to children.

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Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary defines Amazing as causing astonishment, great wonder, or surprise.  On Jan. 19, Soldiers and Family members found out just how amazing events planned by Army Community Service can be.

Agencies across the installation worked with ACS to create the Amazing Race.  Teams who participated were required to travel to selected points across Fort Stewart, and overall, this event was based on the hit CBS reality television show of the same name.   Agencies in support included ACS, the Army Air Force Exchange Service, the Directorate of Family Morale, Welfare and Recreation, Military Family Life Counselors, the Ready and Resilient Performance Center, Child and Family Behavioral Health, the 3rd Infantry Division and 3rd ID Museum, the USO, and the Community Health Nurse and Alcohol and Substance Abuse Program.

ACS facilitated this event and created 12 challenge points that teams traveled to after receiving a clue.  Upon arrival at the challenge point, teams were required to successfully complete the agencies challenge in order to receive the clue to the next point.  Teams participated in such challenges as a drill and ceremony competition, active communication exercise, blindfolded Jenga and many more.  For an additional fun factor, teams were encouraged to take “selfies” at points and post to the ACS Facebook page.  The hashtag #FSAR was created and these posts reached over 6,000 people.

One team in particular “Garrison Squared” was in the lead when they received a “detour”.  The detour required the team to return back to the start/finish point, sing the Army Song to standard; which was graded by cadre from the Marne Reception Center,  before moving on to the next point. 

The DFMWR created one of the most enjoyable challenges of the whole race.  Teams received the hint, “The oldest facility on Fort Stewart built by German prisoners of war.”  If you knew Fort Stewart history, you knew that the point was Corkan Recreation Center.   The teams arrived to Corkan and linked up with the staff there.  A team member was required to shoot a laser target, then go across the street to the bowling alley where a different team member was required to bowl a strike.  After bowling a strike, the team was required to go back across the street to the adventure golf challenge where yet again, a different team member attempted to putt a hole in one.  The team only had one chance, and if unsuccessful, the entire team was required to walk the whole Adventure Golf course, which allowed other teams to catch up.  After walking the entire course, the team returned to Corkan and climbed an inflatable obstacle and went down the slide, to receive their hint to the next point.  ACS would like to express some heartfelt thanks to Roni Stevens, DFMWR for creating this outstanding challenge. 

At the end, “Team HabelWare” from 1st Battalion, 41st Field Artillery, came in first place.  They successfully found all 12 points and completing all challenges.  Their overall time was three hours and 27 minutes. 

The Amazing Race was designed in such a way to teach participants in a different manner.  Adults learn differently and getting people out of a classroom and away from PowerPoint in a fun, engaging way, was successful.   Tonya Imus, ACS said “people really don’t want to attend traditional classes anymore.  We can conduct the same type of trainings but be active, fun and learn about the installation at the same time”.

To schedule a deployment symposium for your unit or to have a guest speaker at your Family Readiness Group meeting, call 912 767-1257 at Fort Stewart or 912 315-6816 at Hunter Army Airfield.  Please keep watching for future events that helps with Army Life. 

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