MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Every year 1st Marine Logistics Group hosts an annual event that instills and promotes safety for Marines, sailors and their families throughout the 101 days of summer.
Roughly 5,000 services members with 1st MLG and their dependents attended the exposition that offered more than 30 venues available to participants to educate and show them of the dangers that are more likely to happen during the summer months.
“The 101 Days of Summer event reminds Marines and sailors that they can have fun without causing harm to themselves or putting themselves in a situation that may cause harm to them or their family and friends,” said Master Sgt. Brian A. Pujols, safety/ environmental chief, 1st MLG. “Safety throughout the summer months, at work, home, vacationing, it doesn’t matter; just be safe and enjoy your summer and understand the services available to aid members and their families.”
This is the first year 1st MLG partnered with Marine Corps Community Services to host an event with the largest turnout to date with the focus of informing service members and their dependents.
“I want Marines and sailors to understand all that is at their fingertips on this base from having their own Latitudes Travel and ITT ticketing offices to the three state-of-the-art paintball parks available to the trips and events available through the Single Marine Program,” said Christina Chilleme, MCCS coordinator with Combat Logistics Regiment 17, 1st MLG, 27, from Huntington Beach, Calif. “There is no reason for them to be bored or unhappy on this base or in this area, and MCCS does its best to work in partnership with MCB Camp Pendleton to ensure that the needs of the Marines and sailors are met by making sure the information on what we offer is out there and readily accessible.”
The annual expo provides an array of services and support vendors to include suicide prevention, alcohol and drug abuse, sexual health, benefits from fitness, social support services, and an understanding on how the United States Marine Corps values each Marine and sailor.
“This year we wanted to change it up and provide the information in a fair type atmosphere,” said Pujols, 42, from Tampa. “We opened it up for Marines and sailors to bring their family members to the event so they could hear and see what the military is doing on trying to educate the service members.”
The 101 Days of Summer exposition offered Marines, sailors and their dependents a variety of fun activities to participate in to include a paintball shoot, jump houses, obstacle courses, a rock wall and free steaks provided by the All American Beef Battalion.
The All American Beef Battal¬ion is a group of individuals involved in the United States beef cattle industry working to support the troops fighting the global war on terror. The organization collects donations through cattle sales and uses all the profits to purchase steaks to cook for military units across the country. The All American Beef Battalion cooked roughly 3,000 steaks for service members during the biggest event yet during the 101 Days of Summer exposition.
“I greatly appreciate the individuals who took the time and effort to put this event together,” said Lance Cpl. Justin G. Farr, heavy equipment mechanic with Combat Logistics Battalion 1, Combat Logistics Regiment 1, 1st MLG. “My unit recently returned from Afghanistan and this expo is a great way to help us transition back from a combat environment by allowing us to meet new people and interact within large crowds.”
Along with the fun environment offered to Marines and sailors, the fair provided service members and their dependents knowledge on how to stay healthy and live safely.
“The 101 Days of Summer exposition is a great way to inform and educate service members,” said Farr, 21, from Lufkin, Texas. “This event has a lot of drug, alcohol and tobacco prevention booths that helps Marines and sailors understand the dangers through examples of photos, statistics and true stories.”
For more information on the services provided at the event and where service members and their dependents can seek them, please visit the Marine Corps Community Services at www.mccscp.com.