Local

September 28, 2012

Bringing the Haps back to the Hap Arnold club

Tags:
by Darnell Gardner
452 AMW public affairs
Hap 1
Iris Alexander and Michael Gaines discuss future plans for the Hap Arnold Consolidated Club. A major renovation project that is currently underway will offer the March community great entertainment, unbeatable membership benefits and festive environment. (U.S. Air Force photo / Darnell Gardner)

This is part one of a three-part series on the Hap Arnold Club renovation project.

The Hap Arnold Club has an appointment for a total makeover. Team March members, which include Reserve, Guard, active duty, family members and retirees are in store for a new experience, charged with great entertainment, unbeatable membership deals and an environment that fosters good times for all.

“It is my goal to bring the Haps back to the Hap Arnold Club,” said Iris Alexander, deputy director, 452nd Force Support Squadron. “My primary responsibility is to manage the Non Appropriated Funds operations here at March Field, and I intend to accomplish this by improving and enhancing activities for our Team March members.”

The first order of business was to restore the once-famed, Hap Arnold Consolidated Club. It, along with other for-profit businesses, suffered from decreased patronage after 9/11 and the economic downturn in 2008. High mission tempos, coupled with strained budgets, kept members on the road and forced them to seek other forms of entertainment that did not require as much outside spending.

“In order to bring the crowds back, we need to start from the ground floor and work our way up,” said Alexander. “If people are going to spend their hard-earned money here, we have to make it worth their while. Our target group is comprised of March officers, enlisted, family members and retirees.”

Alexander’s agenda will begin with a thorough cleaning from top to bottom and touch up painting where needed. Proceeds from the 2012 Air Fest will be used to purchase new furniture, accessories and other necessities required for the rejuvenation project. New management was brought in to add a fresh perspective on how to bring the crowds back to the levels the club once hosted.

Michael Gaines, a 13-year veteran, military club manager, was hired by Alexander because of his accredited past. He stood out among average club managers through his reputation as someone with the know-how to make a club run well. He was once lauded for his work done at the U.S. consulate in Japan.

“Ms. Alexander and I share the same vision,” said Gaines. “We want to resurrect Hap Arnold at the club so that members know his history and accomplishments and the contributions he gave to the March Field community.”

Gen. Hap Arnold was the first Air Force five-star general, a base commander here at March Field and he trained with Wilbur and Orville Wright, said Alexander. The club has many photos of Arnold and even one with Amelia Earhart, she said.

The club will feature a Spanish motif, much like the Mission Inn on University Avenue in Riverside, Calif. The main foyer will display nostalgic photos of Arnold and a shadow box commemorating his service will be majestically positioned in the second part of the alcove. In addition to the eye-pleasing updates, we have also initiated various green initiatives that allow us to consume less energy in an environmentally safe manner, Alexander said.

“To go along with the external improvements, we are putting our people through food and service training,” said Alexander. “We’ve hired professionals to train our staff on proper customer service etiquette. They learned so much about teamwork, serving and greeting guests.”

Gaines explained how his 13 years in the club business, serving the military, has given him the upper hand when it comes to providing entertainment.

“My contacts with professional entertainers give me added leverage,” said Gaines. “I have a personal list of contacts that include comedians like Eric Blake, Alonzo Bodden, Manny Maldonado and Daniel Dugar,” he said. “Also, my contacts have contacts with famous entertainers such as Sinbad and D.L. Hughely and various UFC fighters, all of whom fully support the military.”

Members of the Hap Arnold Club can expect the return of the soul food buffet, jazz brunches, dinner theaters and dance parties, said Gaines. In the near future, the club intends on hosting a Halloween party and New Years Eve bash. If demand is up, the club will consider offering package deals that include lodging at discounted rates, he said.

Alexander also expressed interest in broadening their reach by making the facilities available for business conferences, weddings and distinguished visitor receptions.

“Look forward to upcoming events because we are going to make it happen!” said Gaines.

The Beacon will follow this article with two more to track the rebirth of the Hap Arnold Club. Expect the next article to have updates on the progress and plans for the grand opening.

Shown is the ballroom of the Hap Arnold Consolidated Club that will receive a new look during the renovation project. The floor suffered rain damage during a recent monsoon that swept through March Field earlier this month. (U.S. Air Force photo / Darnell Gardner)

Hap Arnold Club employees successfully complete the Organizational Network Training Program, on Sept. 11. The program was an intense eight-week course involving strategic planning, team player, communication, brainstorming and involvement. Pictured in the front row are Sandra Keliikoa, Nam Dodson, Lizzie Greene, Marrietta Jordan, Ruth Annette McWilliams and Hyon Devon. Pictured in the back row are Mike Gaines, Maj. Tina Tsui, Wayne McAfee, Iris Patronite, Vera Jean Briggs and Iris Alexander. (U.S. Air Force photo / Henry Kim)




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
   
 

 
Tammy_Duckworth,_official_portrait,_113th_Congress

Knowing the facts: National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran, was deployed to Iraq as a Blackhawk helicopter pilot for the Illinois Army National Guard in 2004. One of the first Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Fr...
 
 

452nd felt early frost in Cold War

(Ninth in an 11-part series that was first run in the Beacon in 2007) Two weeks after the D-Day invasion, 47 B-17s from the 452nd Bombardment Group and other Army Air Forces units were destroyed by German aircraft at a largely undefended Russian airfield. The attack, which began about 12:30 a.m. June 22, 1944, destroyed...
 
 

Air Force to implement TDY policy changes

The Air Force recently implemented two TDY policy changes that will impact travel reimbursements for Airmen. The first change, which took effect Oct. 1, made changes to the Joint Travel Regulations, Reimbursable and Incidental Expense Policy. The second will be a change in long-term TDY per diem expenses and take effect Nov. 1. Under the...
 

 
running

Lacing up: Finding your ‘WooHoo’ moment

U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Natasha Stannard For those who run with me, they know I can get a bit noisy. A celebratory “WooHoo” is a must at the start of taking any hill. The drumbeat of sneakers on the pavement, labore...
 
 
Dom-Violence-Aware-Month-photo

Domestic Violence awareness Month: How to help a friend who is being abused

Here are some ways to help a friend who is being abused: •Set up a time to talk. Try to make sure you have privacy and won’t be distracted or interrupted. •Let your friend know you’re concerned about her safety. Be hone...
 
 
(Courtesy photo/Joe Mora)

Shadowy figure blocks exit to room in March Field building

(Courtesy photo/Joe Mora) A camera captures what appears to be a shadowy figure (left side) sitting in one of several chairs lined up against a wall in a building on March Air Reserve Base Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014. The image wa...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin