Monday, February 4, 2013

Squadron Officer School, Montgomery AL

As many of you know we went to Squadron Officer School in Montgomery, AL "en route" from Edwards, AFB to USAFA this past summer (2012). Now several of my friends' husbands are headed there and are trying to decide if it is worth it to tag along.

My understanding is that there is not family housing available, unless you are en route. I was one of four families over the summer that was housed on base. Spouses are allowed in the rooms in the main housing, but children are not. We knew several families that traveled with their spouse and paid out of pocket to stay at a hotel.

Hanging Out At Lodging 
Montgomery, AL actually has a lot to offer a family staying there for eight weeks. (Although if you can avoid being there in June & July, I would recommend it!)  Although there is a lot of work associated with SOS, we had plenty of family time to explore the area. We had several "long" weekends where J would be out early on Friday and we were able to venture to Atlanta or down to FL.

Here is my short list of things to do in Montgomery (Remember, I had a 3 month old with me.)

 Story Time at Hapstead Library  This is about 20 min from base. They have a wonderful story time and also offer other activities. I met a variety of mom's here and learned about other children's activities in the area.The branch also has a Facebook page where they list upcoming activities.

Montgomery Biscuits -  This is a must do! The season runs April through August. One night a week is "military week" where they offer a military discount. If you have kids with you, get the lawn seats and bring a blanket.

Dreamland BBQ - Best BBQ. Totally family friendly. It is across the street from the Biscuits stadium. This is not the only game in town though - we visited a variety of places and loved them all. 
Dinner & A Movie at the Tipping Point 

The Tipping Point - This is a great little family bar. There are places to play for the little ones, a great selection of beers and lots of fun activities. They have good sandwiches for food.
They have a Facebook page with all their events. In the summer they had movies like Peter Pan and the Jungle Book out on the lawn.

The Montgomery Zoo - Small but nice. They have a little train that H loved. Lots of animals and you can bring a picnic. They offer a military discount. 

Riverfront Park - great place to walk with the little ones. There is a splash park on the hot days. H loved watching the water.

The MOOseum - This is a weird little place sponsored by the cattlemen of Montgomery. It is free and has a few fun activities for little ones. It is certainly worth a visit. Call before you go, because the hours can be wonky. 

Best Burritos - El Ray. The boys loved this place. It's a bit of a dive, but it is certainly kid friendly. The burritos are really good.

Thai Food - Downtown in the old railroad station. Food is delicious! They have highchairs and I found the back deck to be more kid friendly then the inside. We did several group dinners here,

Other Classes in the Area - Kindermusic of Montgomery  let me come to classes just the weeks I was there. There is a Pottery Barn Kids out near the Target and Starbucks that had story time - it was a bit over H's head, but it was fun and I met lots of moms there.

Cheering On Dad Before Project X 
Base ActivitiesRunning/Walking: On base there was a great running trail that I did with the stroller. It goes around the golf course and down by the river. There is also a very nice neighborhood you can walk around that has lots of shady trees.

SOS Activities:  I attended a few of the SOS activities like Project X and the dodgeball games (they have a different name.)  The SOS spouses had a few events, but they were not child friendly.  

Child Care: Other than the CDC there is not a child care option on base and there was limited availability over the summer. 

Finding Spouse Information: SOS does provide some information for coming as an accompanied spouse. If you do a Google search you will find this webpage which as not been updated since 2011.  More helpful, the SOS spouses (mostly faculty spouse) also have an SOC Spouses Facebook page.  I  found these spouses to be incredibly good at answering questions I had and recommending activities for my child's age. The spouses that attended without children had plenty of events to attend organized through this group. 

Medical Care – I had no problem getting medical care for the baby or myself while I was here. I did have to switch from Tri-West to the Southern branch of Tricare once I arrived, but baby and I were both seen for our appointments without a problem. 

Picnic in one of Montgomery's Parks 

I had a great 8 weeks in Alabama filled with lots of fun family time. My only complaint was the incredibly rude housekeeping staff at the family housing on base, but that is a story for another time. 

1 comment:

  1. Squadron Officer School,Montgomery AL is the best school in Montgomery . It Provide educational programs and services to fulfill the various desires and interests of our students.