Director's Letter - July 2016

July brings us thoughts of fireworks, picnics, and vacations. Or perhaps I should say, staycations! There is so much to see and do in the area this Summer there is no need to spend hours in traffic in the heat on the way to a crowded beach. Family & MWR has so many ways to help you connect with your family this summer.

With three children it is often difficult in the Knouse house to find time to unplug and just be together as a family. With some of the best fishing, hiking, and kayaking opportunities in the country right in our backyard, I decided there was no time or place like the present to start our family staycation. With our car packed as though we were leaving for that week at the beach (kayaks on the roof, cooler over-packed with picnic food) we were ready for a day of nature. Off we went to the Yellow Breeches Creek in Boiling Springs for a family kayaking adventure. (Kayaks are available at Outdoor Rec) What an adventure it was! We saw a junior bald eagle, caught several native brown trout, and even watched 2 small deer feeding in the field near the water. But, what we really found were a lot of opportunities to work together while navigating throughout the creek. We marveled at the absolute beauty of the creek and the surroundings together as a family. We were able to talk about things going on in our daily lives and laugh about some fond memories of other family adventures. What we really found was family time. No iPhones, no facebook updates, or interruptions. Just plain family time. We found family time right here in our own backyard. Yes, this was a day that I will keep in my memory bank.

If the outdoors isn’t for your family, Carlisle and the surrounding areas offer a wide variety of family activities. Our Leisure Travel Services, located at Carlisle Barracks, Army Heritage Center or Fort Indiantown Gap, is ready to show you all the fantastic places to take your family. They have discount tickets to Hersheypark, Baltimore Aquarium, movie theaters and much more. Downtown Carlisle is full of family fun as well. There are a number of different restaurants with an array of backgrounds and cultures, museums, historic tours, wine tasting and shopping. Gettysburg is just a short drive south that offers history and fun for all ages. You can tour the battlefields, go on ghost tours, see museums or grab a bite to eat downtown. The Cumberland Valley and surrounding areas are full of activities and Family and MWR is here to help you and your family have the best summer possible.

The Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation hope that whether you find our Family and MWR services at Fort Indiantown Gap, Letterkenny Amy Depot or here at Carlisle Barracks that we are helping you find ways to relax, reconnect with family, enjoy time by the pool or in the great outdoors.

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