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May 22, 2014
Sara E. Martin, Army Flier Staff Writer

FORT RUCKER, Ala. (May 22, 2014) -- Fort Rucker kicked off summer with a splash May 18 when more than 2,500 people attended Lake Fest at West Beach at Lake Tholocco.

"We had a great turnout! There were 19 sand castles in the contest, 10 teams in the volleyball tournament and the frozen T-shirt contest is always a huge hit," said Kristi Fink, Directorate of Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation special events coordinator. "There were lines all day for the paddle boats, canoes, kayaks and pontoon boat rides. It seemed like people were having a great time."

Fink said the dunking booth was well utilized, saying that patrons liked the fact that they could get in to be dunked.

"Overall it was a great event," she added.

Patrons thought so, too.

"We were so excited when we heard there would be a free festival at the lake. The weather is great and the water is warm. It couldn't be more perfect for fun," said Casie Johnson, Army spouse. "Fort Rucker always makes sure that Families are taken care of. There is always something for everyone at each event, no matter how young or old.

"My daughter really likes the bouncy houses, too. So, that is a nice touch to a day at the lake," she continued. "Events like this, I think, really improve people's quality of life. There is always a lot going on here, and everyone always seems entertained at Fort Rucker."

Chassie Cox, Army spouse, said that her Family donned their bathing suits as soon as they saw the sun come out.

"It is finally hot outside, so we thought it would be fun to come out to the festival and have a Family day and eat as much festival food as possible," she said while her daughter snatched a twisty chip from her.

"Times like today really make me feel like Fort Rucker really prides itself in taking care of us. The festival is awesome and I really like that it is open to the public," she added. "It's a great way for everyone to kick off the summer. Fort Rucker couldn't do better."