Great partnerships make overcoming adversity easy
By Col. Edward C. Rothstein
It was never more apparent than this past weekend as adverse weather forced a change of location for the final summer concert by the U. S. Army Field Band. The concert, originally scheduled to be held at Constitution Park, was moved to McGill Training Center.
Changing a major event location at the last minute is easier said than done. The decision to move the concert was not made until after 2 p.m. on Saturday for the 7 p.m. scheduled event.
The change of venue required a coordinated effort on the part of several organizations. There were the staff members at McGill who quickly prepared the facility for a concert. Facebook announcements were made by the Field Band and the Fort Meade Public Affairs Office, informing the community of the change.
The Directorate of Emergency Services helped out by posting information on messages boards and provided information to visitors entering the post who needed directions to McGill.
The end result was a wonderful show and turnout by the community. The Field Band's Soldiers' Chorus and The Volunteers put on an outstanding performance. There was not an empty chair at McGill. It was an awesome evening.
I want to thank everyone for their efforts to make the concert a success.
It's been that kind of year at Fort Meade. Time and again, we have successfully overcome adversity.
This past spring we opened the golf season with news that our historic golf course would close May 1 to accommodate major construction and support national security requirements.
I said then that I knew the golf course would be missed but we would do everything possible to find an alternative solution to meet our community's golfing requirements. Within a matter of weeks, we completed reciprocal agreements with several local municipal courses, allowing post golfers to play at reduced rates.
These reciprocal agreements would not have happened without the good relationships we have with county executives, private industry and community leaders outside our gates.
It's this kind of shared cooperation and willingness to find creative ways to work together that has made Fort Meade one of the most unique military installations in the United States.
You've heard me say many times that Fort Meade is a great place to work, live and serve. A major reason why this statement is true is due to the partnerships we have established outside our gates.
We are honored to have great reciprocal agreements with local golf courses and community swimming pools. There are Military Appreciation Days hosted by area sports teams such as the Baltimore Ravens and Bowie Baysox as well as the University of Maryland, which promote patriotism and honor the lives of the men and women who wear their service uniforms proudly.
In return, events we host on post such as the Summer Concert Series, our annual Fourth of July celebration and National Night Out are opportunities for us to thank our surrounding communities for the support they provide to Fort Meade service members and their families.
Fort Meade isn't about the fence line; it's about the great relationships we have with our surrounding communities.
I hope you agree with me that it's important that we continue to look for creative and innovated ways to build strong relationships between the post and the communities outside our gates.
Unfortunately, we are in an era in which reductions in services will continue to be a challenge for Fort Meade as well as other military installations across the county.
Working together with our local communities will continue to be a key to our success and the well-being of the entire Fort Meade region.
As we close out the summer, I want you to know that I am always open to hearing your ideas about ways we can continue to strengthen our relationships inside and outside our fence line.
Working together, I'm sure we can continue to find ways for Fort Meade to be a great place to work, live and play.
Let's all have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend.
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Col. Brian P. Foley
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