Keesler achieves Pride Day goals throughout base
By 2nd Lt. Nick Plante, 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published May 15, 2007
KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Keesler Pride Day held May 11 provided facility managers and residents opportunities to clean up and finish projects throughout the base.
"The 81st Civil Engineer Squadron is working hard to clean up our base and manage the grounds consistent with command standards," said Col. Rodney Croslen, 81st Mission Support Group commander. "However, pride of ownership is everyone's responsibility."
The day had two goals:
Promote pride of ownership in the workplace.
Promote military family housing self-help projects.
"I think we made a step in the right direction," said Lt. Col. Jeff Szatanek, 81st CES operations flight commander. "The day was an opportunity to take pride where we work and live, and we welcome the opportunity to show that pride."
Both goals were accomplished, according to Colonel Szatanek.
Pride of ownership projects included landscaping at the child development center, Cody Hall and 81st CES.
The child development center project provides a grassy playground for the 325 children who use the facility. Sod donated by the civil engineers was laid around playground equipment by 75 volunteers Friday. More landscaping and fertilization are required to complete the project.
"Once the project is finished and the children are allowed on new grass, they'll have a safer and more enjoyable area," said Ms. Maria Ochoa, the center director.
Currently, the children use the playground at the youth center.
"It will be great for the children to have their own area," said Ms. Ochoa. "There's nothing like playing on your own playground."
Initially estimated to cost $27,000, the sod was provided and placed "for considerably less," according to Colonel Szatanek.
Other quality-of-life projects included installing and painting of the Air Force emblem inside the Levitow Training Support Facility and Garrard Hall and placing outdoor grills in the courtyards of some permanent party dormitories.
Base housing residents were able to obtain free impatiens, margarita, salvia, celosia, vinca and begonia plants for beautification projects from the self-help store.
More than 300 plants were picked up at the store by housing area residents May 11, according to Charles Moore, 81st CES chief of material acquisitions.
Facility managers had access to grass seed, mulch, peat moss and landscape stones at the store in Building 4039 at the corner of Z Street and Ploesti Drive.
Trash bags, landscaping tools and materials, pressure washers and other items are also available at the facility.
Colonel Szatanek encouraged residents and units to extend their efforts beyond Pride Day.
"There's other work that needs to be followed up on," he said.
"We'd also like people to practice policing their areas as outlined in the hurricane cleanup plan."