KINGSLEY FIELD, Ore. -- More than 30 children took part in the second annual Kingsley Kid’s Day at the 173rd Fighter Wing, Kingsley Field, Klamath Falls, Oregon, on April 7, 2018.
The 173rd Fighter Wing Airman and Family Readiness Center, State Youth Outreach Program, and the Kingsley STARBASE program provided children of Kingsley Field Airmen an afternoon of hands-on learning designed to be interactive and fun.
In 1986 April was designated as the Month of the Military Child by former Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger. With that in mind, the 173rd Airman & Family Readiness chose to honor the sacrifices children of Kingsley Airmen make in support of their parents for the second year in a row.
“The impetus behind Kingsley Kid’s Day is to recognize that these kids directly support their parents in mission readiness,” said Joe Scriven, the program manager. “It is an opportunity for them to see what mom and dad are doing every day. It is also a chance for the wing to say thank you for the sacrifices they often make.”
The children spent the afternoon at STARBASE where they did experiments, painted key chains, and visited the maintenance phase shop. One experiment involved capillary action where a white carnation flower was placed in water with dye, and in under an hour the petals began to take on the color of the dye. STARBASE Teacher Laura Gibson facilitated the experiment and said she loves events for the families of Kingsley service members.
“I feel that bringing the kids of our families out here is a good way to get to know them over the years and form a relationship,” she said. “That is something that we don’t get to do with the STARBASE curriculum alone, when we only see a student for a total of five days.”
The Kingsley STARBASE Program Manager Alesha Earnest said the partnership with Airman & Family Readiness “is a natural fit because Kingsley Kid’s Day is an extension of the DoD STARBASE Kingsley mission and our way to thank the generous, professional service members that serve at Kingsley Field ANG Base.”
The day ended with an award ceremony for the children where they were coined by 173rd Command Chief Master Sgt. Mark McDaniel and took a photo with him.
McDaniel asked the children, “When your parents have to leave for deployments or temporary duty, who stay’s home?”
After a few scattered responses he said, “You guys are right. It’s all of you, and today we want to say ‘thank you’ to you guys for supporting mom and dad.”