Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Communities within Communities

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Communities within Communities

Article excerpt

I'm a military brat. Yes, I know there is a move afoot to use a more politically correct word but for me, military brat is not a derogatory term. To be even more specific I am a Marine Corps brat. Unlike other branches of service, the Marines are not usually allowed to take their families when they have an overseas assignment, so I don't have the experience of living abroad. What I do have is the wonderful experience of growing up on military bases in the swampy Carolinas and on the beautiful Southern California coast. I'm sharing this because unlike most of you, I didn't grow up using traditional park and recreation services.

When I was a kid a military base was essentially a community within a community. We bought our clothes at the PX, our groceries at the commissary and the occasional event of eating out meant going to the "club"--on base. In fact, venturing off base was a very rare event and while our choices may have been limited, we made out like bandits when it came to recreational opportunities and access to open space.

Because my father was a pilot, we lived on air bases, which meant that we always lived on a coast--near the ocean. This of course allowed us to take up boating, water skiing, surfing, crabbing, fishing, etc. …

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