Parent Weekend

Meli1229

Member
What should I expect for the visit weekend? Will my DS be able to stay with us if I get us a bed and breakfast? Or is this more of a come see me graduate from basic take me out to eat and go home kind of thing?
 

Capt MJ

10-Year Member
What should I expect for the visit weekend? Will my DS be able to stay with us if I get us a bed and breakfast? Or is this more of a come see me graduate from basic take me out to eat and go home kind of thing?
There are dozens of threads on PPW that should be findable using the search box. There are all kinds of recommendations.

It seems to me those threads start sprouting in the spring, as questions about I-Day and PPW pop up.
 

MidCakePa

Member
@Meli1229, in short, your plebe will have town liberty. He/she can leave the yard and stay within a 30-mile radius. But he/she will need to be back at Mother B every night. Note that there are individual exceptions — a few plebes don’t get liberty, for various reasons.
 

justdoit19

Member
What MidCakePa said...we hauled our whole family across country ($$$) for parents weekend. Went and watched parade, and PRT before THE day. Couldn’t find our plebe. A Detailer found us in the stand during Friday morning PRT, and told us our guy was SIQ. Quarantined. That he was to see a DR right before their release time of about noon, and they wouldn’t know if he would be released until then. I think I was actually in shock. TOTAL disbelief. I cried all morning. And flat out ugly cried when he was the first one from his squad standing in formation at noon (he actually came straight from the DR). I tear up now even thinking about it !!

So it does happen...and we were close. I’ll remember that moment forever. And no better hug ever than a parents weekend hug.

Congrats!!
 

MidCakePa

Member
+1 to @justdoit19. There are families who watch evening formation on Thursday and don’t see their plebe there. Often, it’s because the plebe is injured and on crutches or a wheelie (a common occurrence). So the plebe is hidden away in the shadows, because outdoor formation is as much a marketing tool as it is an exercise in good military order. Can’t let the tourists see the lame and wounded now, can we?

The good news is, the lame and wounded are still eligible for town liberty during PPW!
 

justdoit19

Member
Not always!
+1 to @justdoit19. There are families who watch evening formation on Thursday and don’t see their plebe there. Often, it’s because the plebe is injured and on crutches or a wheelie (a common occurrence). So the plebe is hidden away in the shadows, because outdoor formation is as much a marketing tool as it is an exercise in good military order. Can’t let the tourists see the lame and wounded now, can we?

The good news is, the lame and wounded are still eligible for town liberty during PPW!
Not always! That is what we were running into, that our plebe would NOT be released for liberty PPW! That was what sent me into an emotional tizzy. I can handle not seeing him for this and that. But we didn't know until we saw the whites of his eyes after his DR appointment and waiting for his company on the court, whether or not we would actually get to see him. Sans liberty, they would "give him his phone for the weekend so we could at least have that". It worked out. We got him. and since he had been SIQ for a week, he was WELL rested and didnt sleep with us. There is always a silver lining! But that time between PRT and formation was the longest in recent memory.
 

falconchic88

10-Year Member
As others have said, they will have to be back on the Yard each night, but it won't hurt to have an extra bed for him to sleep in, as he will most likely want to catch up on sleep over the weekend! Generally you can expect to to have town liberty on Friday starting after the noon meal formation. You will have the opportunity to see your Plebe's room and meet his detailers/commander, then your Plebe signs out and you get them until usually around 10pm on Friday (subject to change each year). Then on Saturday you'll go to the parade and pick them up after the parade and get to keep them usually until midnight. On Sunday you can pick them up around 8am and they need to be back by 6 pm for evening meal formation. There is a more detailed schedule of events from last year posted on the USNA website under the Plebe Parents Weekend Tab.
 

ders_dad

Member
Sorry for dredging up this older thread. Couple of questions on PPW:

1. Does the radius where Plebes can venture to include DC ?
2. Is it best to stay in Annapolis?

Reason I ask is that my wife has inherited her growing up house in northwest DC when her mother died last year. She has hung onto it but is starting the wheels in motion to sell it. She is wondering if she should hang onto through PPW as a platform for our DS and our family that weekend. I’m worried that even if it’s in permitted distance, the commute would bring added stress to all. I don’t think DS is interested in hanging at the house - this really my wife’s thing (not diminishing her wishes but I am concerned that this plan is not the greatest). I’ve been in the traffic jams going to the eastern shore on summer weekends and it gives me pause.
 

MidCakePa

Member
DC is within the permitted perimeter, but you’re right to be concerned about the commute. A former DC resident myself, I’m blown away by how much worse the traffic has gotten. NW DC not only is on the farthest reaches of the perimeter, but it’s not easy to get to because of the lack of highway access.

The last thing your exhausted plebe will want to do is sit in a car in traffic in their summer whites. Most plebes want to strip down to their blue rims, plop onto a bed or sofa, and nap or Facebook the afternoon away. And they’ll want to talk with you, face to face, not at the back of your head while you navigate New York Avenue through downtown DC.

We based ourselves in Annapolis, away from DTA but close enough to make it easy. We made an afternoon/evening trip into DC to buy DD an Apple Watch in Georgetown and have sushi in DuPont Circle. I’m glad we didn’t try to do more than that.

For PPW, good rule of thumb is KISS: keep it simple, sir (or ma’am).
 

CrewDad

Member
@ders_dad, I don’t recommend. It is a big trip for everyone and especially for your DS. In fact you might even regret it. Like @justdoit19 said, there maybe unexpected moments. So you want to be close to the Yard. It is about 3 hours round trip to and from DC due to summer and Plebe Summer traffic. Every minute with your DS is precious during PPW. Spend it indoors not on the road. First thing your DS/DD want to do is to get out of the “Popeye Suit” and put on his/her favorite shorts and shirts from home. Your DS/DD will want to sleep. Watch him and her sleep. It will be the most pleasant sight since he/she was born.

Your DS also maybe sick. Most Plebes get ill during training because they are tired weak and illness becomes epidemic because everyone is on low immune. Your DS has to report back everyday during PPW and that is hard enough. Another option is to get a house near the Yard Airbnb. Hotels will be expensive and sold out if reserved late. While waiting for Appointment, reserve now. You can always cancel. Many will be happy to get your room if you cancel later.

As a caution, I would bring with you DS prescription drugs and fresh bottles of antibiotic, Motrin, Tylenol, Vit C and Supplements. Plebes get sick often during Plebe Summer and the Fall. They are tired and will get it from classmates, frequently. And the Academy clinic is inundated and not very good in caring for each Plebes at the level your Plebes are used to at home. Other than challenges with logistics and dealing with fatigue and illness, there will be lots of joy and happy tears from Mom and Dad and your Plebe.
 
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ders_dad

Member
Thanks MidCakePa and CrewDad- you confirmed my thinking and have “armed” me with good points in my discussion with DW. Watching him sleep - that is someting DW will definitely relate to. We are going to look into reservations in Annapolis for that weekend and I Day (BTW, CrewDad, DS received appointment last week - thanks for all your help this past year).
 

CrewDad

Member
@ders_dad that’s incredible!!!!! Super awesome. I’m so happy for your DS and for your family! Time to celebrate! I read your post this past year and enjoyed reading them and always had a feeling your DS will get an Appointment. From the bottom of my heart, Congratulations!!!!!! Welcome to the Navy Family. YIS.
 

Just Dad

Member
ders_dad, a big thumbs up for your choice to attend I-day. PPW is the event that gets discussed most here, but for me I-day was much more meaningful. Its the last day you get to stand by your kid as Dad (or Mom), "the ones relied upon for those first 17-18-19 years of life".

When you get the kid back on I-Day, he/she will be different. You are still Mom or Dad, and your DS/DD will still rely upon you in some ways, but it's not the same. In the intervening 6 weeks they've taken huge steps toward becoming an adult......and they know it.

I-Day is a jump into dark, cold water for most plebes (you will see that in their faces when you're there on I-Day). It's nice to stand next to your kid on "the dock" to bear witness, and be the strong shoulder for "Your Kid" one last time. Next time you see him/her they are "Your Mid".

I know I'm in the minority, but I-day was much more meaningful to me than PPW.
 

justdoit19

Member
I would echo that. Iday is handing them off. We have done our job. Now it is the Navy’s turn. Very symbolic with taking the oath. My other older children’s movement into their next phase was more gradual at regular college. At Iday, there is nothing gradual about it. Additionally, there is so much pride. We have raised them to be worthy of such a fine institution and prepared them for the journey. Our part is over (still mom and dad of course!).

PPW was more fun. Iday was more meaningful.
 

THParent

Member
I-Day is a day unlike any other.

Unless the candidate is prior-enlisted or coming from NAPS or a Foundation school, I-Day is a "jerk-you-by-the-neck" immersion into "military life" that will have candidates asking themselves at some point during that 24 hours "What have I gotten myself into here?!" and maybe something akin to "I cannot believe that I was looking forward to this!"

It's a lot of sweating more than most humans ever have, standing in line, getting instruction (and sometimes extra instruction), feeling uncomfortable, and hurrying - everywhere.
But it is a game with a purpose. If they realize that going in, it will be easier on them. If they realize that the Detailers who are yelling at them aren't there for them - but rather they are there for the Detailers - then they will have a good handle on things. Plebe Summer is about giving the Detailers hands-on leadership experience. While Plebes will get more sleep each night during Plebe Summer than they will during the Academic (AC) year, Detailers get very little sleep. They are constantly working and planning every aspect of every Plebe day. Their job is to turn these "kids" into Midshipmen, and they have very little time in which to do it.

Most Plebes will say (after Plebe Summer, of course) that it was one of the best times that they had there.
They are told what to do, how to do it, and when. All they have to do is listen, learn, and do.


 
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