Sports Day raises heart rates, morale

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Ciara M. Travis
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Members of the 435th Air Ground Operations Wing participated in their annual sports day Aug. 3 on Pulaski Barracks.

The event began at the Kaiserslautern Rod and Gun Club with a 5-kilometer fun run and finished at Pulaski Sports Field where Airmen and their families participated in games and enjoyed a picnic.

The event was created to help boost the morale of the 435th AGOW team members with friendly competition, camaraderie and family interaction.

"We are on the road a lot throughout the year," said Staff Sgt. Jess Knutson. "Sometimes it's two weeks, and others it's six months. So being able to have our families out and participating with us is wonderful."

Although the main theme for the day was sports, one thing was made clear -- the families attendance made the event all the more worthwhile.

"Not only are family members the main backbone in the military family, but they also show support to our unit and the community," said Knutson. "It's priceless."

The day was beneficial to the wing as well asĀ the families because it gaveĀ Airmen a chance to relax and get out of their normal grind, said Knutson.

"It also lets us use some friendly competition and bragging rights," Knutson joked. "At the end of the day, it's all about family and the mission -- but don't be fooled, it's also who carries the trophies."

The games consisted of softball, ultimate Frisbee, and powerball. The participants were divided into teams and the team with the most points at the end of the day was rewarded with a trophy.

Although the sports day featured more of the well-known sports, the wing was also able to put their combative skills to the test. Airmen competed in an obstacle course that was focused around real-life circumstances.

"Events like these allow our Airmen to challenge their combative capabilities," said Col. John Shapland, 435th AGOW commander. "Our sports day is designed to foster teamwork, build esprit-de-corps, and prepare us for potential challenges ahead."