Parent planning questions

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Proud mom 2016, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. Proud mom 2016

    Proud mom 2016 Member

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    Hi! I'm new here but have been lurking and reading, getting so much information. Great forum!

    My son just received word of his USAFA appointment. No BFE yet, just the phone call.

    I have some planning questions. DH is also active duty and is PCSing verseas in May. He will be missing ds's graduation. DS would like him to come to CO in August...would it be best for dh to come for acceptance day or parents weekend? It will be cost prohibitive for more than one of us to come as we still have little ones we'd need to bring.

    Sounds like dh wouldn't see much of him on acceptance day but the thought of him missing graduation and that day is really a bummer.

    ETA. Ds says to just come to parents weekend. How many days should dh come for?


    For those who have experience with your cadets what do you recommend?
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
  2. Mikeandcris

    Mikeandcris Parents of 2014 Grad and F-15 Pilot

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    Go to Parents Weekend

    Do not miss Parents Weekend period. Acceptance Day equals maybe a few hours with your cadet. Parents Weekend means seeing your cadet for a few hours Thursday evening; all day Friday as you tour the Academy, see his classes and dorm, meet fellow cadets and take him off campus to dinner; attend Saturday's football game (and see all the pagaentry, tail gate parties, cadets marching onto the field and the "run like hell"), then take your cadet off campus once the game is over until he/she needs to be back around 7:00pm on Monday (some stay in hotels in COS, while others go to Denver, Boulder, Summit County, or other nearby venues.) Acceptance Day = 2-3 hours with cadet. Parents Weekend = @100 hours with cadet. Also, while it is expensive to bring family, many people bring kids, grandparents etc to Parents Weekend. My credit card takes a big hit, but it's MUCH less than tuition at nearby Big College State. I don't mean to be glib about expenses, but I recommend you save and scrimp from now until Sept so that you and your family can go to Parents Weekend. It's THAT big of a deal.
     
  3. kdc246

    kdc246 Member

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    Agree 1000% with Mikeandcris:thumb:Bring the little ones along, Parents weekend is a family affair. We use it as our yearly vacation.
     
  4. usaffanatic

    usaffanatic Member

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    wHat exactly are the date? I'm at other sons college at the moment. Want to reserve rooms while we figure out logistics
    thanks
     
  5. Proud mom 2016

    Proud mom 2016 Member

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    Oops. Ds logged me out on my iPod and I didn't notice. Guess you now know who I'm the proud mom of. LOL
     
  6. Mikeandcris

    Mikeandcris Parents of 2014 Grad and F-15 Pilot

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    Dates and suggestions

    Friday August 31 through Monday Sept 3. However, plan to arrive in COS on Thursday afternoon so you can see your cadet (and perhaps bring along some fast food) that evening near the Chapel. I also recommend making your return flight out of COS or DEN on Tuesday...it's hard enough saying goodbye on Monday without having to deal with a drive to the airport and then a flight home. You'll need hotel rooms in COS Thursday and Friday night for sure. Sat and Sun can be either in COS or Denver, Westminster, Boulder, etc. I suggest Monday night for just you and spouse in COS.
     
  7. AFAYahoo

    AFAYahoo Member

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    I definitely agree that Parents Weekend is the time for your husband to go--the cadets are very ready to see their families and get off campus for a couple days. Its so much fun!

    For Acceptance Day (as well as BCT and other events going forward), if finances allow it (about $20 a month), make sure you join the AOG to get access to Webguy (you'll get info if you haven't already). Webguy will take plenty of pictures of the parade on A Day, the squadrons, etc so hopefully you'll get to see pics of your son in that way even if you can't be there. Also check into the Facebook USAFA 2016 Parents page--if its like the 2015 Parents group, people that are there will take plenty of pictures and post them online. I know its not the same as being there, but during BCT the first time I saw a picture of my son on webguy I felt like a weight was taken off my shoulders. Just seeing he was alive and well (relatively! it WAS BCT after all! :shake:) made a huge difference!
     
  8. AFAYahoo

    AFAYahoo Member

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    Mikeandcris has a great idea about staying Monday night, but just be aware that your son will have to be back by 7 pm at the latest (and it can be a traffic jam returning back to the AFA at the last minute). If he has homework he may want to be back earlier. Because of minimal flights to our area from Denver and the fact we had to work the next day, we had to drop our son by 3:00ish and head to the airport for our flight. He said there were a number of cadets back already so he didn't feel lonely. Basically I'm just saying if you can't stay until the next day don't worry about it.
     
  9. Proud mom 2016

    Proud mom 2016 Member

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    Thanks for this info. Were talking $6000-7000 + for our whole family to come for the weekend so it's not very likely as we will want him and our others to come see us as well through the year.

    Pictures and dhs eyes on him will make it doable even if not desirable.
     
  10. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    And I Expect to see all of u at thudgate. Lol.
     
  11. Dad

    Dad Member

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    Parents Weekend tip #2934

    You might want to consider renting a house instead of a hotel. There are some 3 bedroom homes that sleep 7 for under $250 per night still available. Google vacation rentals Colorado Springs or Denver (some cadets want out of the Springs). It can be cheaper than staying at a hotel and more roomy and comfortable.
     
  12. kdc246

    kdc246 Member

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    ^^^Definitely look into the houses. We stayed in hotel rooms the first year and found it difficult at best(not enough space, we were on top of each other, you get the picture). Last year we rented a house, didn't have to worry about maids or food out, and plenty of room-two floors plenty of bathrooms. We stopped at Wal-Mart and did our food shopping and had wonderful meals and it was what the kids wanted. We did eat out a couple of times but only for my cadet. With airfare,car, house and meals it was around $4000. It could be less without the meals out and 50yd line football tickets as well as Academy t-shirts etc. We are renting the same house again this year. We went kind of high end on the house so I am sure there are others for less. House alone was about $2500 with a returnable deposit of $400.
     
  13. batmom

    batmom Member

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    When is Acceptance Day for 2012?

    What day is Acceptance Day for the class of 2016. Since we have already booked our entire family to attend the Parents' Weekend, we were not planning on also going there for Acceptance Day. Is this a mistake?
    Thanks for your input.
     
  14. Dad

    Dad Member

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    If you can go to A-Day, then go. If not, there are plenty of parents there to pick up a few stray cadets. I went alone to A-day and brought plenty of food. Spent a few glorious hours with DS as he struggled to get his books before classes started. Brought whole family to Parents' Weekend. If faced with a choice between the 2, go to Parents' Weekend.

    A-Day is August 4, 2012. See calendar : http://www.usafa.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-111208-035.pdf
     
  15. AFAYahoo

    AFAYahoo Member

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    Looking at the AFA calendar, I believe Aug. 8 would be A Day this year. Its the last day of transition before classes start on Aug. 9--that is the schedule they followed last year. August 4 is the day the cadet wing has to return (those who have been on leave and aren't already there) by 1900 (7 pm)--the entire wing (minus some in sports etc) marches on A Day so they need to be there.

    I was the only one from our family to fly out last year for A Day since my husband couldn't take time off from work then and we had already spent a lot of money when we went out for In Processing and were planning on all going for Parents Weekend. I was glad I did, but definitely PW is the time to go if you have to only do one. For A Day, I flew in the day before (Tuesday) and did some shopping (snacks, a printer, a few toiletries, etc) for some things my son needed, as well as some food to donate to the picnic the next day. The parade will be bright and early Wednesday morning ( 9 or 9:30), followed by shoulder boards being pinned on, and then each squadron had a picnic. After that, there was time to take the things I purchased to my son's room and spend some time together. My son's squadron had a briefing they had to go to by 1:30 I think, so we had to be out of there by 1:00. So there isn't much time to see your cadet, but its wonderful if you get a chance to do it!
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  16. greentrees

    greentrees Member

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    We did not go to A-day and DS was 'adopted' by friend's mom. That mom took pictures for us and emailed them to us.
    While I wanted to go, DS told me in his letters not to spend the money on coming, that he would be fine and he was. Did I want to be there, yes, but he told us to save the money and bring everyone we could to PW, which we did.

    We had printer shipped to him and mailed him a box or two (using flat rate boxes) of stuff he wanted.


    And -- not to get the cart before the horse -- but don't make too many non-refundable reservations for things. They need to get through BCT 1, then BCT 2 first.
     
  17. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    MIKE: You'll miss me at thudgate this year! I'll be watching my son fly in Pensacola! Or DelRio! ;)

    OP: GO TO PARENTS WEEKEND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can't say it strongly enough. Go Thursday, leave Tuesday, if at all possible. You'll never regret it.

    Some wonderful parents whom we met through this site took care of my twins on A-Day, and I think their Sponsor Mom and Dad (who are living saints on Earth, for sure!) also came over. Have your phone charged up so you can talk, and lots of tissues nearby to catch those tears!
     
  18. AFAYahoo

    AFAYahoo Member

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    Quick update--webguy has just posted on his blog (along with many other dates for the upcoming summer) that Acceptance Day is now August 7! Classes start Aug. 9, so a little different schedule than in the past.
     
  19. YorkieMom75

    YorkieMom75 Member

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    USAFA Parent Clubs

    "Dad" gave me the idea to look for a USAFA Parent Club in our area. I found one, and can't believe how much info they provide, in addition to support. They have a great website (a new place to stalk!), and after clicking around, I found this Academy list of parent clubs that might help some of you get started.

    http://www.usafa.edu/superintendent/cma/parentslinks.cfm
     
  20. Proud mom 2016

    Proud mom 2016 Member

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    You all convinced us...we're all coming. Most expensive weekend we've ever spent but I have no doubt it'll be worth it.

    We're flying in on Wednesday to get over jetlag since we are coming from overseas. Anyone have some do not miss attractions to recommend...we'll have 8 and 10 year old girls as well as our cadet so some more little girl friendly activities for Thursday would be great.
     

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