Parent Central Holiday Hours: Parent Central Services, Bldg. 1743 Victory Road, will be closed Dec. 23-25 and Dec. 30-Jan 1, 2018. Holiday hours will be adjusted from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. through Dec. 30. Normal business hours will resume Jan. 2, 2018. 568-4374
DHR training holidays: The Directorate of Human Resources will have reduced operations beginning at 11:30 a.m. Dec. 15 for a holiday team-building event. Normal operations will resume Dec. 18. The points of contact are: Military Personnel Division at 568-3302; ASAP at 744-5192, 744-5148 or 744-5149; the Administrative Services Division at 569-5817; the Education Center at 568-6682 or 568-6831; the SFL-TAP at 568-7165, 568-7396, 568-4210, 568-7996 or 568-3870. For emergencies during closure, call 568-3093.
Parent workshop: William Beaumont Army Medical Center Child, Adolescent and Family Behavioral Health Services is presenting a parent workshop called “Healthy Coping Strategies for Parents during the Holidays,” from 10 a.m.-noon Dec. 7 at the FRC. Contact Lashonda Bogan, outreach coordinator, at email@example.com or 742-5023 to RSVP or ask questions.
Trees for Troops: The Trees for Troops distribution will be from 9 a.m. Dec. 11 at Biggs Park for service members E-5 and below and Warrior Transition Battalion Soldiers until the trees are gone. Then, at 1 p.m. Dec. 11 at Biggs Park, trees will be available for all ranks and retirees until the trees are gone. Trees are free, but organizers ask that people bring a canned food item for the food pantry at the Junior Enlisted Family Center. For military ID cardholders only. Tree stands not provided. Must provide transportation for live trees. Date subject to change due to delivery of trees.
MSG Pena ACP construction: Construction will impact entry through the Master Sgt. Pena Access Control Point through Dec. 15. Traffic will be reduced to one lane entering and one lane exiting the ACP between 9 a.m. and about 4:30 p.m. on construction days. Drivers should plan accordingly and use caution. 568-5953
Veterinary Treatment Facility: The Fort Bliss Veterinary Treatment Facility offers appointments Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Pet owners can schedule wellness exams, microchip implantation, heartworm tests, nail trims, recheck exams, inoculations against rabies, distemper (parvo) and Bordetella, sick calls and feline leukemia tests. The facility is located at Bldg. 6077 Carter Road, past Desert Strike Lanes. 742-2266
ICE comments: Use your voice and tell us how we are doing. Fort Bliss has an outlet available so you can let us know how we are doing. That outlet is the Interactive Customer Evaluation program and it is available online at http://ice.disa.mil/index.cfm?fa=site&site_id=435. This is a tool we use to help us improve the services provided to you. It can be used for negative and positive comments. You can remain anonymous or you can list your contact information. Listing your contact information allows us to provide you feedback on your questions. So be sure to use your voice and let us know how we are doing. Good or bad, we appreciate your input.
Stop smoking: If you are ready to quit smoking, call the Fort Bliss Tobacco Cessation Program at 742-1343 to enroll in classes. The classes are at the Soldier Family Care Center and Mendoza Clinics on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 a.m. Walk-ins are welcome. This class is free to DOD civilian employees of William Beaumont Army Medical Center, active-duty personnel and their spouses and retirees who are Tricare beneficiaries. There are four sessions to complete the program and each session is one hour and a half long.
Fire Marshal Training: Fire marshal training is from 9-10 a.m. the first Wednesday of every month at Bldg. 11240, Staff Sgt. Sims St. No appointment necessary. Open to all Fort Bliss employees, military or civilian. 744-8194 or 744-8195
Changing stations: When changing stations, see In/Out Processing for permanent change of station clearing papers 10 business days before your PCS leave starts. Clearing papers are issued Monday-Friday 8:30-11:30 a.m. at In/Out Processing, Bldg. 505, Room 133A. Be in duty uniform with ID card and bring a copy of the following: completed installation PAC slip (see your S1 or levy brief packet for a copy); PCS orders; DA 31 (signed with control number); DD 93 (digitally signed) PSDR units only; SGLV (digitally signed), PSDR units only; and DA 137-1 unit clearance record. PSDR units include 1st AD, all BCTs, 1st AD STB, 1st AD CAB, 11th Bde., 204th MI, 212th FA, 31st CSH, 86th Sig. and 93rd MP. 568-2482, 568-2728, 568-3145, 568-6120, 568-7714 or 569-7348, 7369
Homemade for the Holidays: Join the Mickelsen Community Library for Homemade for the Holidays from 1-3 p.m. Dec. 9. Create personalized gifts for friends and family this holiday season. The library will provide crafts and supplies to make cards, gift tags, ornaments and more. Supplies are first-come, first-served. Quantities are limited. This is a free event, recommended for ages 5 and older. 568-6156
Brushstrokes: Join the Mickelsen Community Library from 2-5 p.m. Dec. 9 for a social art class. This month’s theme is ‘‘Woodland Fox.” The class is open to DOD ID cardholders ages 10 and older. Registration is required. Space is limited to 10. Cost: $15, including all supplies and instruction. 568-6156
Holiday Brunch: Come enjoy the holiday brunch with family and friends at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Dec. 10. There will be an endless buffet of holiday favorites, including an omelet station and decadent dessert table. Cost: $22.95 for adults; $11.95 for children 5-10; and free for 4 and younger. Brunch includes complimentary wine, champagne or mimosas. Reservations are required. Open to the public. 744-8427
Family Thank You: Enjoy this holiday season with glow bowling and on-the-hour prizes Dec. 24 from 1-5 p.m. Dec. 24 at Desert Strike Lanes to say thanks for being you. There will be $1.50 bowling, shoes, pizza, hot dogs, small drinks and candy to enjoy. Open to the public. 568-6272
New Year’s Eve Bingo: Start the New Year off right with a little extra cash in your pocket Dec. 31 starting at 4 p.m. at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center. Try your luck to win cash prizes. Ticket buy-in is $50 and includes bingo paper pack, dinner and a champagne toast to the New Year. It’s open to DOD ID cardholders, ages 18 and older and their guests. Advance ticket purchase recommended. 744-1171
Unit Book Kits: Are you part of a unit going into the field or deploying soon? If so, you can stop by the Mickelsen Community Library and pick up book kits for free. The kits contain a selection of popular fiction and nonfiction paperback items. 568-1902
Pershing Pub: The Pershing Pub is a great place to gather at the end of a long week. Open every Friday at 4 p.m. (except training holidays). Come enjoy weekly drink specials and free snacks. 568-6272
Auto Crafts Safety Orientation: The Auto Craft Center offers safety orientation classes every Wednesday and Thursday at 6 p.m. This is a mandatory safety orientation for use of the facility for automotive do-it-yourself projects. It is open to DOD ID cardholders only. 568-7280
Warrior Zone: The Warrior Zone, 21171 Medic Ave., is open. The brand-new, state-of-the-art entertainment facility is open from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sunday and Tuesday through Thursday; and from 10 a.m.-midnight Friday and Saturday. This is a place of leisure after a hard day’s work. Grab a bite to eat at the full-service snack bar. There’s lots to do with a fully stocked bar, six pool tables, two mini-bowling lanes, Alienware, PlayStation/Xbox gaming center, outdoor basketball, sand volleyball and more. It’s open to the public 18 and older. 741-3000
Gingerbread Making Contest: Show off your creative side for this year’s Gingerbread House contest for contestants 16 and younger. Enter one of three categories: most creative, most technical or most extreme. Top winner in each category gets a $100 Visa gift card. Registration is required; visit bliss.armymwr.com, search special events and fill out the form. Deadline for entry is 5 p.m. Dec. 6. All materials must be edible and cannot be professionally assembled. All entries must be turned in to the coordinator during the Holiday Festival event, Dec. 8 at Biggs Park, no later than 7:30 p.m. Prizes will be awarded at 8 p.m. 588-8247
Holiday Fest: This holiday season, create priceless memories with your family and fun works of art during Holiday Festival 2017 from 5-9 p.m. Dec. 8 at Biggs Park. This year’s theme is Gingerbread House. There will be free photos with Santa, a gingerbread house-making contest, snow making, train rides and design your own gingerbread cookie. Don’t forget to bring a blanket and chair to watch a holiday movie in the park. This is an outdoor event, so bundle up, but don’t worry, there will be hot cocoa for all ages, and coffee for the adults to keep you warm and toasty. 588-8247
Snow Tubing in Ruidoso: Teens, come join Replica Youth Center for a day trip to Ruidoso, N.M., and go snow tubing Dec. 9. The cost is $10, due by Dec. 8. Registration is required. 568-3523
Replica Youth Center Rock Climbing: RYC students will learn how to rock climbing and rope safety, team building and self-confidence as they grow physically and mentally. It’s free and it will be held at the Soldier Activity Center every Thursday from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Registration is required and can be done at the RYC. Space is limited to 10. 568-3523
4-H retreat: The 2018 4-H Teen Leadership Retreat is slated for Jan. 5-7, 2018, at the Texas 4-H Conference Center near Brownwood. Early bird registration is through Dec. 22. Register online through the center’s website, http://texas4hcenter.tamu.edu.
Child Range Orientation: This is a one-hour firearm safety course required for children ages 6-17 to accompany parents or guardians on Rod and Gun Club live-fire ranges, and it will take place at 2 p.m. the second and fourth Saturday of each month. A parent or guardian must accompany all children. It is open to the public. Free. 568-5426
School Age Book Club: The School Age Book Club is designated for children ages 7-12. A staff member will read for part of the time and the children will read aloud as well from 4-5 p.m. every Wednesday at Mickelsen Library. Activities and projects are completed at home, returned and shared at subsequent meetings. Occasional refreshments are provided as well. 568-6156
SKIESUnlimited: SKIESUnlimited offers a variety of fun and educational programs geared for children of all ages and talent levels. Music classes such as piano, voice, guitar and drums are available. SKIES also has a variety of art, sports, driver’s training and babysitting courses. All students must be enrolled with CYS Services Parent Central. Call 568-4374 to set up an appointment. Class registration opens from the 20th of the month prior to the seventh of the month in which you are enrolling. www.bliss.armymwr.com or 568-5544
Story Time: Stop by the Mickelsen Library every Tuesday from 10:15-11 a.m. or 11-11:45 a.m. as children ages 2-5 listen to stories read aloud. There will also be crafts, activities and refreshments available. Start children on the road to literacy. 568-6156
Paws for Reading: Do you have a school-age child who struggles with reading? Visit the Mickelsen Community Library from 4-5 p.m. every Wednesday of the month and join Paws for Reading. It is a free program for children ages 6-12, where they have an opportunity to read to a certified therapy dog to help improve their reading skills and build self-confidence. Parents must register for a time slot (15 minutes or more) on the children’s side of the library. Registration will occur the day of the program on a first-come, first-served basis. Maximum of four slots. Parents must remain at the library during the program. 568-6156
Babysitting Course: The SKIESUnlimited Babysitting Course is designed to help middle school and teenage youth learn what it takes to be a responsible, caring, trustworthy and competent babysitter. Students will receive first aid and CPR training on a Saturday. They will learn about child development, nutrition and the business of babysitting. The course is open to children ages 12 and older. Cost: $10. Registration is required and can be done at SKIESUnlimited. Must be registered with Parent Central. 568-5544
Text message scam: FirstLight Federal Credit Union is alerting the El Paso community about a text message scam that attempts to get personal and financial account information. The messages often ask people to call an unfamiliar number to reactivate their debit card or increase transaction limits. The credit union would never request information in this manner. Delete any text messages from an unknown number that requests you to act. Anyone who might have fallen victim should contact the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov. If you believe your identity has been compromised, visit www.identitytheft.gov. 471-4928
Mineral and gem show: The 2017 El Paso Mineral & Gem Society’s Mineral, Gem, Jewelry & Bead Show is 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday at El Maida Shrine Auditorium, 6331 Alabama St., El Paso. The event features free gem ID on Saturday and Sunday, cabochons, fossils, crystals, jewelry designers and more. Free admission and parking. www.epmgs.com
MOAA meeting: The El Paso Chapter Military Officers Association of America will meet from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday at Monte Vista at Coronado Senior Living, 1575 Belvidere, El Paso, for a meeting and luncheon. Event will include a gift exchange. For those who wish to participate, bring a wrapped gift valued at $20 or less. Cost: $20 per person. For late reservations call Bob Pitt at 533-5111 or Bill Moore at 842-9650 by noon today (Nov. 30) and pay at the door.
Holiday Market: The 13th Annual Holiday Market at Ardovino’s Desert Crossing is from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday at One Ardovino Dr., Sunland Park, N.M. It features more than 100 vendors selling a variety of handmade gifts. Join us for brunch, take pictures with Santa and get your holiday shopping done. The restaurant will be open all day beginning at 9 a.m. Free admission. 575-589-0653, ext. 6 or www.ardovinos.com
Holiday movies: The Plaza Theatre in downtown El Paso presents “Elf” at 1 p.m. Sunday and “The Polar Express” at 3:30 p.m. Sunday. “It’s a Wonderful Life” plays at 6 p.m. Dec. 10, and “Frozen” at 2:30 p.m. Dec. 31. 533-4020
Living Christmas tree: The Living Christmas Tree Program at First Baptist Church, 805 Montana Ave., El Paso, is at 7 p.m. Dec. 8, at 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 and at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 10. Cost: $5 each. 533-1465 or www.fbcep.com
Korean War Veterans: The Korean War Veterans Assoc. Col. Joseph C. Rodriguez (MoH) Chapter 249 will meet at 2 p.m. Dec. 9 at the Davis Seamons VFW Post 812, 2400 Davis Seamons Road (turn right at the entrance to McKelligan Canyon). New officers will be sworn in. If you served in the military in Korea from 1945 to the present or served in the military between 1950 through 1955, you could be eligible to join the association. 256-4599
‘A Christmas Carol’: See Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” at the University of Texas at El Paso’s Wise Family Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 and 15 and Dec. 10 and 17 at 2:30 p.m. Cost: adults $14; UTEP faculty and staff, military, groups of 10-plus, alumni with card and non-UTEP students $12; UTEP students $9. 747-5118
Fundraising dinner: You are invited to an elegant fundraising gala for the El Paso Choral Society from 6 p.m.-midnight Dec. 9 at Summit Hall, 120 N. Festival. Cost: $100 and available at www.epchoralsociety.org/giving or by sending an RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
El Paso Choral Society: The El Paso Choral Society presents a New Year Music Festival with 100-voice choir and professional orchestra and soloists at the Abraham Chavez Theatre. First, enjoy the holiday favorite and family-friendly opera Amahl and the Night Visitors at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 30. Then ring in the New Year with a classy Viennese New Year’s Concert featuring waltzes and arias at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 31. Tickets range from $20 to $60 for each production and are available through Ticketmaster.com, the Plaza Theater Box Office and the El Paso Choral Society. 259-4999, email@example.com
Lights on the Lake: The Third Annual Lights on the Lake is at 5 p.m. Dec. 9 at Ascarate Park, El Paso. This one-night event is free and open to the public. Featuring the Jingle Bell Jog, lighting ceremony, music, food trucks and entertainment for the entire family. Families are encouraged to bring blankets and chairs for a free showing of “A Christmas Story.’’
Christmas star: “The Mystery of the Christmas Star,” is playing at the New Mexico Museum of Space History’s New Horizons Dome Theater and Planetarium at 3:30 p.m. daily through Jan. 1. The film seeks to discover a scientific explanation for the star the wise men followed; the film also explores the historical significance of the story. (575) 437-2840 or www.nmspacemuseum.org