Visiting this site four years ago provided me with a lot of insight with respect to the experiences our family would go through with our son entering USNA class of 2013. Now that it is done and over let me pass some info on that may be useful to you. And to all of those that posted info that was useful to us, thank you it was appreciated. 1. Take a blanket to I-Day so that your son or daughter can sit down. Have something cold for them to drink (and at least one extra for the plebe with no parents present). 2. Do whatever you have to do to be there for PPW, other than commissioning week it was one of our fondest memories of USNA. If you have not made your reservations for a hotel for that date, do so immediately (if you can afford it book a DTA hotel you can park your car and walk the whole weekend). There is a tremendous sense of relief when you know you will be walking your plebe back to the gates and not worrying about traffic issues. I like the Loews Hotel. 3. If you are a football fan and you are planning to see a football game or several if you do not live to far from Annapolis, Army v Navy is the highlight, but for me......a Navy v Air Force game in Annapolis is a tremendous game. A great venue and I guarantee the weather is going to be better. There are two home games with Air Force in the four years, so plan accordingly. Annapolis is a great town in the fall, slightly more comfortable than what you will probably experience on I day or PPW where it is probably going to be hot. 4. I Day is in fact very different than taking your son or daughter to college, it is much more permanent- they are no longer yours, they belong to the Navy now. They will be fine. Do a youtube search of the 2009 Capt. Klunder (now Admiral) speech that he gave to the parents on I-Day. Do it before you go, it will put your mind at ease. 5. Unlike college when your son or daughter go to USNA you have become part of something as well- the questions will keep coming for four years from your friends and neighbors, you are along for the ride. 6. Your son or daughter will make good friends, there will be bumps in the road and their friends will help them get through them. Believe it or not as parents we look back at plebe year as one of our favorites. They still need you... a little bit, the growth process is accelerated during that year and the plebes are focus of a whole lot of attention- even if they do not want to be. 7. Youngster and 2nd Class year is when your mids take care of business and it seems they have changed a great deal and you go from worrying about whether they are cut out for this place to focusing on the world that they will be entering. This is a much scarier thought. 8. They suddenly are firsties. Yes it happens that fast...I think they spend two and half years as a plebe, and a half year as a youngster and second class or so it seems. You turn around and they are firsties. They are grown up, they are part of the leadership at the academy and they have service selected, and yes those scary issues are now becoming real. 9. However, USNA has prepared them well, you are confident in them as they are confident in everything they do and how they carry themselves. 10. Commissioning week comes along and it is a great time of celebration. Everything is fun. The Supes Party, the Ball, that last formal parade, the party's the dinners and a bit of sadness as once its over they are all headed in different directions. And just that quickly a new venture begins. 11. Finally Mom and Dad can remove the bleach pens from each car and each piece of luggage...... or let them remain as a fond memory of four years in Annapolis. To the class of 2017 and their parents good luck and enjoy the ride. Our ride was a lot of fun.