KINGSLEY FIELD, Ore. — How do you keep a tradition going that’s been around since the mid-90s, that’s all about petting zoos, face paint, pumpkin patches and fun – in the middle of the strangest year in decades? By turning it into a drive-thru “Trunk or Treat!” Kingsley Field has hosted a Family Day event every year for more than twenty five years, and they’re not letting COVID-19 stop them this year.
“Family Day is an event that many of our base personnel look forward to supporting every year,” said Senior Master Sgt. Bobbi Hager, an Airman and Family Readiness Specialist with the 173rd Fighter Wing. “There are literally hundreds of individuals, many behind the scenes, that make Family Day an exciting event every year.”
To ensure the event was compliant with all Department of Defense, U.S. Air Force and State requirements, Cecily Gaudinski, the Airman and Family Readiness Program Manager teamed up with Master Sgt. John Ruiz, the 550th Fighter Squadron First Sergeant.
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“Master Sgt. Ruiz has been excited about starting up a drive-thru event for families ever since he arrived at Kingsley Field,” she said.
With the help of other volunteers and their ideas and suggestions, we were able to not only hold the event but make it special for families as well, she continued.
Airmen from different offices from around the base dressed up in an assortment of colorful costumes to the delight of kids and parents alike. From toy airplanes to candy to pumpkins, Kingsley kids got a bag full of treats on their trip around the static displays of jets.
More than 50 volunteers from across the base supported the event this year, working booths, directing traffic and handling many of the logistical and safety details.
“Despite the fact that we’ve had to improvise this year we have still observed so much enthusiasm and creativity,” Gaudinski said. “Our Kingsley families are important to us…no matter what’s happening in the world.”