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Posted: September 7, 2018 9:02 a.m.
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Engineers open lounge


Soldiers from the 10th BEB, 1ABCT, enjoy an opening weekend football game at the Sapper Lounge.

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CAMP HOVEY, SOUTH KOREA--Soldiers from the 10th Brigade engineer Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, recently opened the Sapper Lounge at Camp Hovey, South Korea, to help improve Soldier morale by providing more options when finding ways to spend their free time. 

“Camp Casey is a long bus ride or taxi and there needed to be options that didn’t include the ‘Ville or being isolated in your room,” said Capt. Michael Cohen, the 10th BEB Chaplain. “The Lounge will give the Soldiers something that they can be happy about and go to and spend time at.” 

The Sapper Lounge was a project that was started before Cohen arrived at the battalion. The idea gained support from both the battalion and brigade command teams. 

“The Sapper Lounge’s purpose is quite simple,” said Lt. Col. Scott Swilley, commander, 10th BEB. “The Lounge aims to provide an opportunity to the Soldiers within the footprint easy access to be able to relax and enjoy themselves.”

The Sapper Lounge has a large community room that has a projection TV with surround sound. There is a video game room that offers both XBOX One and PS4 consoles and the adjacent room offers guitars for the Soldiers to play. The lounge also has a room with a dart board, putting surface, and board games to play with a group of friends. Finally, there is a full kitchen available that is stocked with snacks, and day-to-day essentials for Soldiers to stock up on things like toiletries. 

Even though the Sapper Lounge has just been opened there are already plans for expansion. One plan in the works is to add a permanent grill for soldiers to use. Other plans include a pool table and shuffle board area. 

There may be other improvements down the road, but the Sapper Lounge is already off to a phenomenal start compared to what the building was just a few weeks ago said Cohen. 

“As we leave and the other unit comes in we can keep adding to [the Lounge],” said Cohen. “I don’t think it’s going to be done until the last person leaves.”

Swilley said that Cohen, a Soldier named Spc. Herrin, and Staff Sgt. Alex Miller were the “inspiration and the driving force behind allowing this great facility to be created.” 

Cohen also wanted to give a special thanks to USO2GO Kit that was funded in part by the donations made by the National Football League and many other organizations. 

The Sapper Lounge is located in building S-3408 on Camp Hovey, next to the softball fields and gym. The current hours of operation are from 4-11 p.m. on duty days and from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. on the weekends. 

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