Four-year-old Ronin Stevens and Maj. Brian Stevens, Capability Development and Integration Directorate, right, watch 6-year-old Owen Stevens take his turn on the mechanical bull during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp;

Charlotte Richter | Staff Writer

The Garrison Fall Festival, with live music, a mechanical bull, hayrides, inflatable play areas, contests, games and barbecue from local area master grillers, was Nov. 6 on the
grounds around Pioneer Chapel. Organizers estimated that more than 700 community
members attended the festival.

Garrison Fall Festival participants take a hay ride around the Pioneer Chapel grounds Nov. 6. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp

“We’ve mainly done the bull and the bouncy house, and they’ve loved it,” Amanda
Neltner said of the activities she and her husband, Maj. William Neltner, Combined Arms
Center Fielded Force Integration Directorate, and their daughters, 7-year-old Ashley,
4-year-old Ethel, and 2-year-old Ruth, participated in during the festival. “We do a lot with the chapel, and we always like doing stuff on post.”

Six-year-old Mason Coleman throws a lasso at one of the activity stations during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp


The Fort Leavenworth Religious Services Organization; Family, Morale, Welfare and
Recreation; and the Directorate of Public Works, among other organizations, provided
resources and volunteers to support the event.

“We really wanted to assist the Garrison, and as the RSO, our mission is always the people,” said Michelle Taylor, Catholic community coordinator. “We wanted families to
meet other families and kids to have fun. It’s outdoors, and God gave us a beautiful day.”


Taylor said coordination by RSO was assisted by chaplains and religious service special-ists. She said volunteers were also eager to sign up, and attendance exceeded expectations.


“We’ve all been cooped up for so long —it’s beautiful to see laughter and fellowship
and friendship,” Taylor said.

Some children said they were excited to meet with friends they hadn’t expected to see.
Elizabeth “Evie” Vankirk, age 13; Elizabeth Howell, 14; Ruthie Longfellow, 15; Annabelle
Longfellow, 13; Trina Waugh, 15; and Shea Ray, 13, said they came with their families but found each other between activities.

Pie-eating contest participants 11-year-old Kaitlyn McEntee, center, and 8-year-old Ana Strickland, right, race to consume the most pie while family and friends yell encouragement and advice during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Ana was named the winner of the timed competition. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp


“It was so much fun! I saw all of my friends here, and we’ve been running around having
a lot of fun,” Vankirk said. She said among the group they had their own competition at the mechanical bull.

Eight-year-old Ana Strickland is lifted by her friend, 11-year-old Anne Schwennesen, as they celebrate Ana being named winner of the timed pie-eating contest during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp


The girls said they also enjoyed the food and the music.

Lt. Col. Matthew Fox, Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate, performs “Simple Man” during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. The event featured live music, games, challenges and barbecue. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp

“I liked the friendly atmosphere here, the friendly welcome and being
able to hang out,” Howell said.

Lt. Col. Matthew Fox, Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate, performs “Simple Man” during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. The event featured live music, games, challenges and barbecue. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp
Lt. Col. Jimmy Matthews, Command and General Staff College instructor in the Department of Joint, Interagency and Multinational Operations, gives his son, 11-year-old James Matthews, some tips before his attempt at the strength tester game during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp
Eleven-year-old James Matthews looks at the results of his swing on the strength tester game during the Garrison Fall Festival Nov. 6 outside Pioneer Chapel. Photo by Prudence Siebert/Fort Leavenworth Lamp

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