March Field hosts 40th-Annual Military Appreciation picnic

  • Published
  • By 452 AMW
  • 452 AMW
Some 5,000 March reservists, employees, and their family members gathered at the 40th Annual Military Appreciation Picnic LeMay Park Sep. 8 from noon to 5 p.m.

Picnic attendees feasted on cheeseburgers, hotdogs, potato salad, chips, soda, bottled water and cream treats, all free-of-cost, thanks to generous donations from vendors.

Children enjoyed a miniature amusement park inflatable play structures and adults enjoyed a display of classic cars and other luxury vehicles. Two bands kept the picnickers entertained, along with senior March ARB leaders who each endured minutes in the dunk tank.

The picnic is coordinated and hosted each in a joint effort between the Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce, the Moreno Valley Chambers of Commerce and The Silver Eagle Club.

"The community really appreciates the military members and their families, as well as the civilians who work on the base," said Lt. Col. Don Traud, a longtime member of the picnic planning committee.

Nearly 300 community volunteers helped with setup, cooking, serving, crowd control and cleanup. Cadets from local Civil Air Patrol and Sea Cadet chapters were out in force, as well as students from the Riverside County Culinary Arts School who helped with the food preparation. The University of California-Riverside women's basketball team assisted in making the picnic a success as well.

Some of the sponsors who made the picnic possible this year were: Albertsons, Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream, Riverside Marriott, Boeing and the March Joint Powers Authority.