The Gray Months....

ten042

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Joined
Mar 25, 2016
Messages
51
We were there! It was a beast of a snowstorm! And West Point does not cancel classes for bad weather. It was the coolest thing being on campus during the storm.
Around 7am, the snow was already several inches deep and the guards were not going to let the visiting families (appointed students who were visiting WP to do an overnight visit with a cadet) on base because it was Code Red, essential personnel only. Luckily, admissions got involved and the visitors were allowed on base to have their overnight cadet experience. Can you imagine traveling all that way and then being denied entry? My DS was determined to visit West Point on a cold, winter day and boy, did he get more than he ever imagined!
Happy to say the snow and cold were not enough to discourage him from accepting his appointment and he hit the accept button this morning.
The VP's visit to the Flipper Dinner was also an amazing experience for my DS.
In general, the West Point experience continues to be a smack-down over any other college experience.
We are all in!
Go Army, Beat Navy!
 

Mcjlt

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Joined
Jan 17, 2017
Messages
19
We were there! It was a beast of a snowstorm! And West Point does not cancel classes for bad weather. It was the coolest thing being on campus during the storm.
Around 7am, the snow was already several inches deep and the guards were not going to let the visiting families (appointed students who were visiting WP to do an overnight visit with a cadet) on base because it was Code Red, essential personnel only. Luckily, admissions got involved and the visitors were allowed on base to have their overnight cadet experience. Can you imagine traveling all that way and then being denied entry? My DS was determined to visit West Point on a cold, winter day and boy, did he get more than he ever imagined!
Happy to say the snow and cold were not enough to discourage him from accepting his appointment and he hit the accept button this morning.
The VP's visit to the Flipper Dinner was also an amazing experience for my DS.
In general, the West Point experience continues to be a smack-down over any other college experience.
We are all in!
Go Army, Beat Navy!
We are visiting in a few weeks...so excited - do you have any suggestions for activities for parents during the overnight?
 

UHBlackhawk

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Sep 22, 2015
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1,652
We are visiting in a few weeks...so excited - do you have any suggestions for activities for parents during the overnight?

See the museum outside Thayer Gate. Trophy Point. Drive around... won't take long.
 

ten042

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Joined
Mar 25, 2016
Messages
51
We are visiting in a few weeks...so excited - do you have any suggestions for activities for parents during the overnight?
@Mcjlt...
When we landed @ EWR the day before his overnight, my DS had a message on his phone from admissions alerting him that he would need a blazer or something similar, to wear to the special dinner during his overnight. Yikes! We had not packed anything so after a quick google search I found the Palisades Mall, about 30 miles south of West Point where we found a Macy's to get him outfitted for the dinner. *** Call Admissions and verify if his overnight will coincide with any special events that he should be prepared for! Or perhaps, just pack a navy blazer and be prepared, just in case!

Be sure and download the shuttle app map onto your phone! You can find info on this app if you visit the Admissions Page: Visit West Point... I think the first shuttle leaves the stop closest to The Thayer @ 7:02? You might want to be there a little before 7:00am? It's a walkable distance from The Thayer to Admissions, but it is probably a mile and if you are carrying a bag, that won't be easy. This app was really helpful because it shows you in real time where the shuttle is on campus and what time it is next scheduled to be at your stop.

Due to the blizzard, I did not want to get in my car and risk an accident so I just hung out at the hotel. Later that night I met up with some of the other parents that I met during the briefing that morning. It was so fun getting to meet these families! Make a point to connect with the other families and see if they are available for dinner that night.

I drove over to Cold Spring the next day and the beautiful Garrison neighborhoods before I visited the Visitor's Center's Gift Shop. The VC Gift Shop had very limited merchandise and sizes and they told me they were due to receive their spring merchandise next month. But, if you can drive over to the Alumni Center, they have a gorgeous gift shop in their building. It's a beautiful building anyway, and the gift shop had really nice merchandise! My son and his friends all use a protein supplements and my son found some West Point plastic shakers in the cadet store for about $6/each. They made good presents to bring back home to his friends!

I picked up my son around 12:30 after his lunch with his Cadet host. My son loved the whole experience and was 100% certain convinced West Point was the right school for him after his overnight. He did mention that he barely slept because the cot is pretty uncomfortable and he was not given sheets, pillow or blanket! The other boys in his room lent him their own personal items to make him as warm and comfortable as possible, which was really nice. If you have a camping pillow and thin blanket you could throw into your suitcase that might be a good idea! Also, if your student has already accepted their appointment, then they should get their fingerprinting done on-site as well as go to the cadet store and get their boots and low-quarters, assuming those have been selected and stocked for the class of 2021.

Thanks to this website, I had seen that visiting students sometimes brought their hosts cookies or something small as a token of thanks. I baked some cookies and bought some protein bars to send with my son. When my son filled out his overnight request, he requested a certain cadet that he had gone to high school with, and WP was kind enough to put them together for the visit. That was a very nice touch as we think very highly of this young man and knew we could trust his experiences and opinions on West Point.

So, in summary:
1. either call admissions and verify that no "special visitors or special dinners" are being held the night of the scheduled visit or just pack a blue blazer/dress shirt/shoes (or girl equivalent) just in case!
2. The hosts were very grateful for the cookies and power bars, something i never would have thought of without Service Academy Forum's help
3. Pack a camping pillow/thin blanket for your child's overnight cot
4. Alumni Center Gift Shop was very nice!
5. Leave time to get your child fingerprinted and possibly shop for boots/shoes at cadet store
6. If it's cold outside you could go shopping at outlet mall in Newburg but if it's nice, you might enjoy some time in Cold Spring
Hope this helps and I hope you have a great visit!
 

UHBlackhawk

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I would add there are about four gift stores and they don't necessarily have the same things.
Athletic gift store by the PX.
Alumni gift store by Mitchie.
Visitors gift store outside Thayer gate.
Museum gift store inside the museum.
 

ten042

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Joined
Mar 25, 2016
Messages
51
I would add there are about four gift stores and they don't necessarily have the same things.
Athletic gift store by the PX.
Alumni gift store by Mitchie.
Visitors gift store outside Thayer gate.
Museum gift store inside the museum.
You mean I still have 2 more gift stores to explore? Hooray! I can't wait to go back and see them!
 

tug_boat

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The "home made baked cookie thing". Ive had some heated discussions with helicopter moms about this subject. A cadet in his dorm with his roommates will have two different types of boodle boxes. 1. their personal boodle box which they keep cherished boodle they do not want to share. 2. community boodle box that is available to all cadets who come to their room to visit and share whats inside. On occasion there may be a company boodle and/or floor boodle box. Many WP parent clubs will send a huge boodle box to Cadets from their home town. Most companies have a "licky and chewy" store to buy items if they have an urge. So, at times some visiting mom will make home made cookies with good intent that these poor Cadets are missing home and need attention like they give their Chihuahua. If a Cadet does not like the cookies from his or her "drag". i.e. taste, type, color, shape or whatever, will more than likely go into the trash. You may read that a "drag" gave their host Cadet a box of cookies, they will be polite and grateful. Most Cadets are very weight conscience and may just pass them off. Other items to consider is a gift card from Grant Hall or store bought items.

Push Hard, Press Forward
 

Capt MJ

Formerly Known As Attila The Hunnette
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Thread wander -@tug_boat
Is "licky and chewy store" = Navy and Marine "get some geedunk at the geedunk?"
 

ten042

Member
Joined
Mar 25, 2016
Messages
51
The "home made baked cookie thing". Ive had some heated discussions with helicopter moms about this subject. A cadet in his dorm with his roommates will have two different types of boodle boxes. 1. their personal boodle box which they keep cherished boodle they do not want to share. 2. community boodle box that is available to all cadets who come to their room to visit and share whats inside. On occasion there may be a company boodle and/or floor boodle box. Many WP parent clubs will send a huge boodle box to Cadets from their home town. Most companies have a "licky and chewy" store to buy items if they have an urge. So, at times some visiting mom will make home made cookies with good intent that these poor Cadets are missing home and need attention like they give their Chihuahua. If a Cadet does not like the cookies from his or her "drag". i.e. taste, type, color, shape or whatever, will more than likely go into the trash. You may read that a "drag" gave their host Cadet a box of cookies, they will be polite and grateful. Most Cadets are very weight conscience and may just pass them off. Other items to consider is a gift card from Grant Hall or store bought items.

Push Hard, Press Forward
I know! It is so impressive how clean these young people eat! My son and all of his friends are super careful about what they eat too. That's why I brought the protein bars too! :) I figured between the two items something would be appreciated, or not. But, I got to be honest Tug_Boat, when I told the Cadet that I had brought him a box of homemade cookies, his face lit up and he said, "you did?... For us?" he seemed so touched and surprised that it made the whole thing totally worth it. Not sure if they ate them or tossed them, but I like your idea too!!! Plus, no one should feel obligated to bake cookies and haul them cross-country, up to admissions in a snow-storm and hand them over to a total stranger! Gift cards are always appreciated.
 

ten042

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Mar 25, 2016
Messages
51
I know! It is so impressive how clean these young people eat! My son and all of his friends are super careful about what they eat too. That's why I brought the protein bars too! :) I figured between the two items something would be appreciated, or not. But, I got to be honest Tug_Boat, when I told the Cadet that I had brought him a box of homemade cookies, his face lit up and he said, "you did?... For us?" he seemed so touched and surprised that it made the whole thing totally worth it. Not sure if they ate them or tossed them, but I like your idea too!!! Plus, no one should feel obligated to bake cookies and haul them cross-country, up to admissions in a snow-storm and hand them over to a total stranger! Gift cards are always appreciated.
But regarding Grant Hall, the Admissions representative said we were not allowed to enter Grant Hall without an authorized person. In other words, I could not walk over there on my own to buy him a gift card, so I didn't. But, there are several restaurants in town, including McDonalds?, that deliver. American Burrito was mentioned as well. Maybe those are better sources for gift cards if you can't enter Grant Hall on your visit.
 

UHBlackhawk

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Yes, AMERICAN Burrito delivers. I think Pied Piper Pies does as well. Cupcakery Hudson Highlands is a spouse on West Point.
There is a Starbucks walking distance on post so they can use gift cards for that.
While I am a muggle I always liked homemade baked goods when deployed. It's a taste of home.
 

tug_boat

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An interesting factoid about the McDonalds there in Highland Falls. The city council did not want fast food chains with in the town limits. They wanted to support small business and did not want a street lined up with fast food. The property the McDonalds occupies is within WP limits and thus allowed McDonalds to have a franchise outside the gate to serve both the town and WP. It is also one of the very few that deliver.

Push Hard, Press Forward
 

brovol

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May 26, 2015
Messages
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We were there! It was a beast of a snowstorm! And West Point does not cancel classes for bad weather. It was the coolest thing being on campus during the storm.
Around 7am, the snow was already several inches deep and the guards were not going to let the visiting families (appointed students who were visiting WP to do an overnight visit with a cadet) on base because it was Code Red, essential personnel only. Luckily, admissions got involved and the visitors were allowed on base to have their overnight cadet experience. Can you imagine traveling all that way and then being denied entry? My DS was determined to visit West Point on a cold, winter day and boy, did he get more than he ever imagined!
Happy to say the snow and cold were not enough to discourage him from accepting his appointment and he hit the accept button this morning.
The VP's visit to the Flipper Dinner was also an amazing experience for my DS.
In general, the West Point experience continues to be a smack-down over any other college experience.
We are all in!
Go Army, Beat Navy!
Wow, your son picked a great day to go. My son had the same feeling after his overnight, but yours apparently got to be there for the Flipper dinner, which is an amazing opportunity. I don't know how anyone could be there for that and then decide to go anywhere else but West Point.

Congratulations, and enjoy the experience.
 

brovol

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You mean I still have 2 more gift stores to explore? Hooray! I can't wait to go back and see them!
I think the two best places to purchase WP attire are the Cadet Store, and the Exchange. Both have a good selection of items, and are very reasonably priced. Can get quality t-shirt for $10-15, and sweatshirts for $20-30. They have higher end stuff too, but the lower priced items are not cheap quality by any standard.
 

UHBlackhawk

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The exchange itself you will need a military ID. But there is a store in the "mall" area that sells jerseys and such where you do not need an ID.
 

brovol

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The exchange itself you will need a military ID. But there is a store in the "mall" area that sells jerseys and such where you do not need an ID.
Actually, the exchange will sell the USMA merchandise without an ID, but the other stuff you need one. A Cadet can buy anything.

The store in the mall is strictly Nike merchandise, and is fairly expensive.
 
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