Bliss Happenings February 1, 2018

Bliss Briefs: (El Paso, Texas, Feb. 1, 2018) 

Education Center: Services for the Education Center, Bldgs. 2916 and 2917 Carrington Road, West Fort Bliss, will be affected by renovations for Americans with Disabilities Act compliance through the end of February. For your safety and convenience park in the far east parking lot. Be safe and considerate of others during the renovation. 568-2660

Legal office closure: The Fort Bliss Legal Assistance and Claims Offices, on the first floor of Bldg. 113 on Pershing Road, will close at 3 p.m. Wednesday, and will be closed from 1-4:20 p.m. Feb. 15 for unit functions, and will be closed all day on the days of no scheduled activities of Monday and Feb. 16, and the federal holiday of Feb. 19.

Scouting for Food: Join the Boy Scouts of America in helping the less fortunate by donating nonperishable food items. Place food items in a bag by your front door by 8 a.m. Feb. 10. Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Venture Crews from Fort Bliss will collect your donations. We will also be taking collections at the Fort Bliss Commissary from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday and Feb. 10. People can also leave donations at the Fort Bliss Boy Scout Hut, Bldg. 452 Pershing Road. All donations will go to the Fort Bliss Junior Enlisted Center. Contact Scoutmaster Bob Sellers at 472-6790 or the Boy Scouts of America Yucca Council at 772-2292.

Religious education: Fort Bliss will hold religious education teacher training for all teachers and prospective teachers serving at chapels here from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Feb. 24 at the 1st Armored Division Chapel, 11272 Biggs St. RSVP by Feb. 12 to Dr. Rick Mendoza at 568-4334 or rick.mendoza.civ@mail.mil or Michael McCarthy at 569-5721 or michael.t.mccarthy.civ@mail.mil.

Tricare changes: William Beaumont Army Medical Center will hold briefings about changes to Tricare from 8-10 a.m. Feb. 12 and 27 and March 12 and 28 in the hospital’s clinical assembly room, 5005 N. Piedras St., El Paso. Get a username and password for DS logon at https://dmdc.osd.mil/identitymanagement/. Check to make sure your information is correct on DEERS at www.tricare.mil/deers. Sign up for Tricare benefits updates at www.tricare.mil/about. Find out about Tricare changes at www.tricare.mil/changes.

Valentine’s Day: The Fort Bliss Exchange is helping Soldiers share the love on Valentine’s Day with candy and gifts at the main store and Express, as well as fresh flowers for less at shopmyexchange.com. For more information, call the Fort Bliss Exchange at 562-7200.

DHR training holidays: The Directorate of Human Resources will have reduced operations Feb. 16 and will be closed Feb. 19. Normal operations will resume Feb. 20. 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.

Black History Month: The 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade will host a Black History Month observance from 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Feb. 21 at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center. The observance will celebrate the contributions black Americans have made to American history in their struggles for freedom and equality. 744-5140

National Prayer Breakfast: The Fort Bliss National Prayer Breakfast is at 8:30 a.m. Feb. 22 at the Centennial Banquet and Conference Center, Bldg. 11199 Sgt. Churchill St., Fort Bliss. The guest speaker will be Chaplain (Col.) Jonathan E. Shaw. Contact your unit ministry team for tickets. (757) 602-4768

German Spring Bazaar: Buy handmade gifts for Easter at the German Spring Bazaar from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. March 10 at 3300 Carter Road, Bldg. 747. Enjoy bratwurst, waffles and German cakes and pastries, as well as German beer, coffee and soft drinks. All proceeds go to the Aid for the Needy charity, which helps people on both sides of the border. 201-5939 or 201-5980

VBS volunteers: Vacation Bible School is right around the corner, and organizers are looking for adult team leaders to help with crafts, decorations, recreation, teaching, worship rally and meals and snacks. This year’s theme will be Game On! and is July 9-13. Call 568-4334 or visit www.ftblissvbs.com.

Tax Center opening: The Fort Bliss Tax Center is open at 122 Slater Road, Fort Bliss. Call 568-1040 to schedule an appointment.

POWC: The Fort Bliss Protestant Women of the Chapel is holding Bible studies from 9-11:30 a.m. on Thursdays at the 1st Armored Division Chapel, 11272 Biggs St., and from 6-8 p.m. Tuesdays in the Religious Activities Center, 449 Doniphan Road. Free child care is provided. (270) 863-1499 or on Facebook at Fort Bliss PWOC

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

Mardi Gras celebration: Freedom Crossing at Fort Bliss will hold a Mardi Gras party from 2-6 p.m. Feb. 10 at the shopping center. The event will include live music, a children’s parade at 5 p.m., food and drink specials and more.

FMWR

Paint N’ Pour: Join the Mickelsen Community Library for their special Paint N’ Pour, Valentine’s Day edition from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Feb. 9. The event is perfect for spending time with the one you love. The library will provide appetizers, tapas, a cheese and meat plate, desserts and champagne (one glass per person). It also includes a complimentary couple’s photo. Cost: $50 per couple; must register as a couple. The theme is “Love Birds.” It’s open to DOD ID cardholders 21 and older. 568-1902

Handmade Valentine Cards: Join the Art and Hobby Shop for a handmade Valentine Card mixed media workshop from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Feb. 10. Cost: $20, due at registration. Includes instruction and materials. Preregistration is required and can be done at Auto Crafts, 820 Marshall Road. Open to DOD ID cardholders, 15 and older. 568-5563

Hiring Fair: Fort Bliss will have one of its semiannual hiring fairs from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Feb. 15 at the Centennial Club. The free event is open to all active duty, family members, retirees and other military ID cardholders. 569-5838

Yappy Hour: Have a friendly pup? Head to the Sam Adams Pub patio with your four-legged friends and enjoy toys, drinks and treats. It’ll be a nice time by the fire from 5-7 p.m. Feb. 15. There will be food and drinks available for purchase. This month’s theme is “My Fuzzy Valentine.” Bring your furry friend costume-ready for a chance to win a prize for best dressed. 568-6814

Bunco: Have fun at the Bunco Bliss event from 6-8 p.m. Feb. 22 at the Pershing Pub. Cost: $15, and it’s open to the public, ages 18 and older. The theme is “Winter Wonderland.” Reservations recommended. 781-6809

Right Arm Night: Enjoy a relaxing evening at Right Arm Night from 4-9 p.m. Feb. 23 at the Pershing Pub. The event will include free appetizers and drink specials. 781-6809

A Warrior’s Call: Do you have singing, poetry slam or comedic talents you want to show off? Join us at the Warrior Zone for A Warrior’s Call, a free open mic talent night held every Thursday from 6-9 p.m. through Feb. 22. Participate for a chance to win $25 gift card each Thursday night. There’s one entry for each performance and a maximum of two entries per night for the drawing. The giveaway is only valid if three or more acts perform each night and will be awarded at 9 p.m. or at the end of the event due to participation. Winner must be present to accept award. Sign-ups are held at the front desk any time. You must provide your own CD, USB or cellphone and amplifier if required. Speakers and microphone will be provided. All participants must be present 10 minutes prior to performing. All acts must uphold the Army Values. It’s open to the public, ages 18 and older. 588-8247

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

Go Youth

Harry Potter Book Night: Come one, come all to the annual Harry Potter Book Night from 6-8 p.m. tonight at the Mickelsen Community Library. Celebrate J.K. Rowling’s wonderful book series with a night of giveaways, refreshments and awards for best costume. Free. 568-6156

Super Heroes Activity Day: Come dressed up as your favorite super hero from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Feb. 24 at the Mickelsen Community Library. This event is fun filled with crafts, a story, snacks, photo opportunity and activities for ages 10 and younger. Registration is required; space is limited to 16. Free. 568-6156

Special Olympics: Team Bliss Special Olympics seeks track and field athletes 8 and older. Practices begin Feb. 24 and are from 9-10:30 a.m. Athletes must complete enrollment and medical release forms at sotx.org/about/areas/area19. To register, contact the Fort Bliss Exceptional Family Member Program at 569-4227, ext. 5, or call the School Liaison Office at 568-2784.

MYC Bake-A-Treat: Bake a treat that’s sweet to eat and find a friend who is neat to meet. Bake-A-Treat is open to sixth-12th graders from 5-6 p.m. every Tuesday at the Milam Youth Center. CYS registration is required. 568-7879

Replica Youth Center Rock Climbing: RYC students will learn how to rock climb and use ropes safely, building self-confidence as they grow physically and mentally. It’s free 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

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

Story Time: Stop by the Mickelsen Community 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

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 the Mickelsen Community Library. Activities and projects are completed at home, returned and shared at subsequent meetings. Occasional refreshments are provided as well. 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

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

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

Community

Microsoft training: El Paso Community College is offering free Microsoft training to active-duty service members, veterans and military spouses. The 14-week course will lead to certifications in many areas. Daycare, transportation and job placement assistance is available to eligible participants. 831-7785

MOAA: The El Paso Chapter Military Officers Association of America will meet from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Feb. 10 at the General George Underwood Golf Course, 3200 Coe Ave., El Paso, for a membership meeting and luncheon. Guest speaker: Judge Angie Barill, 346th State District Court Judge. Cost: $20 per person and reservations are required by Monday to El Paso Chapter MOAA, Attn. Treasure, P.O. Box 6144, Fort Bliss, TX 79906-0144. Online reservation is available. 533-5111

Military Order of the World Wars: The Military Order of the World Wars, El Paso Chapter, will host its Annual ROTC Recognition Luncheon at 11 a.m. Feb. 17 at the Great American Steakburger, 701 S. Mesa Hills Dr. The University of Texas at El Paso and each high school ROTC unit in El Paso County and nearby Gadsden County, N.M., are invited to send one staff member and two cadets. Send school name, contact individual, email address and attendance status to theattache@aol.com as soon as possible. 755-4038

Estate planning: The Johanson Estate Planning Seminar is from 8 a.m.-noon Feb. 23 in the Foundation Room, 333 N. Oregon, El Paso. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. RSVP by Feb. 21. To register, call 533-4020 or visit epcf.org/estate.

Military Winterfest: The Angel Fire (N.M.) Military Winterfest is Feb. 22-24 and will highlight skiing, snowboarding, tubing and a family expo. Dana Bowman, a retired U.S. Army Golden Knight and double amputee, will dazzle audiences with his American Flag Jump Feb. 24. MilitaryWinterfest.com and Facebook.com/MilitaryWinterfest

Discover El Paso: Discover El Paso Association will hold a luncheon meeting from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Feb. 27 at the Underwood Golf Complex, 3200 Coe Ave., El Paso. Cost: $23 per person in advance. Call 598-6376 for reservations no later than Feb. 14.

Trash to Treasure: The Trash to Treasure Art Contest is accepting entries of recycled art through March 2. There are cash prizes and an exhibition at the El Paso Museum of Art. For details visit www.tinyurl.com/j23demeitsyourworldproject@gmail.com.

2018 Army OCS Alumni Association Reunion: The U.S. Army Officer Candidate School Alumni Association 2018 Reunion is March 25-29, 2018, in Columbus, Ga. The association represents all Army officers commissioned through any OCS, regardless of previous locations or branch affiliation. The association encourages mini class reunions during the event. The reunion will include a Hall of Fame induction ceremony, reception and formal dinner including the presentation of the Patterson Award. There is an optional tour to the Little Whitehouse and Warm Springs. There will also be demonstrations and briefings at Fort Benning highlighting developments related to the OCS program. The reunion is at the Columbus Marriott Hotel, 800 Front Avenue, Columbus, Ga., 31901. 1-706-324-1800. Refer to the OCS web site at https://www.ocsalumni.org for information updates or contact Nancy Ionoff, (813) 917-4309.

Military Group Scholarship: The Plano, Texas, Military Business Resource Group is offering a $5,000 scholarship to a student who exemplifies academic excellence and commitment to strong values. For details, contact Charles Roush at TXMilitaryScholarship@capitalone.com or (469) 418-0117.

Neon Desert: The Neon Desert Music Festival is May 26-27, Memorial Day weekend, in downtown El Paso. Early-bird weekend passes are on sale at www.neondesert.com. Early bird general admission weekend tickets are $99, while J&K VIP tickets are $275 and J&K Platinum VIP tickets cost $550.

Garden club: The Park Foothills Garden Club would like to increase its membership, so members encourage anyone interested in gardening, landscape and flower design to contact them at parkfoothillsgardenclub@gmail.com.

Book loans for veterans: Are you a veteran? Are you registered at El Paso Community College this spring and receiving GI Bill benefits? You are eligible to take part in the Veteran’s Book Loan Program. Visit the EPCC Veteran Resource Center at the Valle Verde Student Services Center, room S-139 or call 831-2398 for more information.

Socorro Veterans: Veterans in Socorro, Texas, are raising money for a memorial to honor veterans who have served from World War I to the present. Nonprofit ID is #81-3106278. Send contributions to Socorro Veterans Memorial, P.O. Box 290901, Socorro, TX, 79929. 588-0413