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Our Military at Keesler Air Force Base

Location

Biloxi, Mississippi, home of Keesler Air Force Base, is the fifth-largest city in the state and is nestled against the coastline of the Mississippi Sound. In driving terms, it’s approximately 90 miles east of New Orleans via Interstate 10; 60 miles west of Mobile, Alabama, via I-10; 575 miles east of Dallas via I-20 and I-49; and 900 miles south of Chicago via I-55.

Population

There are approximately 7,736 active-duty military, 3,521 civil service employees, 13,000 retirees, 4,763 family members and 2,700 contractors on Keesler Air Force Base.

Base Size

The base encompasses 1,784 acres, including a training annex.

About Keesler Air Force Base

Keesler Air Force Base is the Electronics Training Center of Excellence for the United States Air Force.

The base is on land in Biloxi, much of which was provided to the U.S. Army Air Corps by the city in early 1941. Just to the south of Keesler is the Mississippi Gulf Coast, fronted with 26 miles of man-made beach. To the north lies the Back Bay of Biloxi. New Orleans is about 90 miles to the west, while Mobile, Alabama, is about 60 miles east of the base.

Keesler Air Force Base has been a major training center from its inception. During World War II, more than 142,000 aircraft mechanics and 336,000 recruits received training at the installation. Since its first class graduated in January 1942, Keesler has graduated more than 2 million students.

The 81st Training Wing is host to Second Air Force, the 403rd Wing (Air Force Reserve) and the largest employer on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The 81st Training Group is one of the largest technical training groups in the Air Force. Most students are nonprior service and are trained in cutting-edge technologies. Ground radio, radar, communications-electronics, computer systems and air traffic control are but a few of the courses taught at Keesler.

Keesler is a lead Joint Training installation, providing instruction for Air Force, Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and civilian federal agency personnel.

The 81st Mission Support Group’s six squadrons provide necessities such as lodging, meals, utilities, security and fire protection. This group ensures that Keesler has the best environment possible for students and personnel.

The 81st Medical Group provides comprehensive inpatient and outpatient medical and dental services to more than 30,000 DOD beneficiaries and is the Air Force Medical Service’s second-largest deployment platform. The medical group has also joined with the Biloxi VA Hospital to provide health care for veterans along the Gulf Coast. In partnership with the VA, the University of Mississippi Medical Center and local area hospitals, the 81st Medical Group ­provides ­medical, dental and nursing education and training for 16 officer and enlisted specialties.

Not only is the 81st TRW fulfilling its mission at home but abroad as well. The wing is mobile and takes combat and noncombat capabilities to wherever it’s needed. It deploys personnel to more than 50 locations around the world. Security forces, medical personnel and transportation specialists are among the groups most tasked.

Keesler airmen continue to be active partners in the local community and are committed good neighbors to the people of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Signature events, including Keesler’s Thunder on the Bay Air Show, Mississippi State Special Olympics and the CISM soccer champion­ship are great examples of how the base is bringing folks to the Mississippi Gulf Coast and Keesler Air Force Base.

In its nearly 75 years of existence, Keesler Air Force Base has overcome many obstacles and changed with the times, always meeting the needs of its mission as well as its reputation as a good neighbor. The commitment to excellence is reflected in the men and women of Team Keesler, extending well beyond the confines of the base and into the local community.

Economic Impact

Keesler Air Force Base’s total impact on the local economy in 2014 totaled approximately $1.65 billion. It is the largest employer in Harrison County with an estimated 11,000 employees. In fiscal year 2014, Keesler Air Force Base (plus its Training Annex) had a military personnel payroll of approximately $468.3 million and a civilian personal payroll of nearly $165 million.

History

In early January 1941, Biloxi city officials assembled a formal offer to invite the U.S. Army Corps to build a base to support the World War II training buildup. The package included an early airport, the old Naval Reserve Park and parts of Oak Park sufficient to support a technical training school with a population of 5,200.

On March 6, 1941, the War Department officially announced that Biloxi had been selected. The War Department activated Army Air Corps Station No. 8, Aviation Mechanics School, on June 12, 1941. The new school would be named in honor of 2nd Lt. Samuel Reeves Keesler Jr. of Greenwood, Mississippi. Keesler had died during World War I while serving in France as an aerial observer assigned to the 24th Aero Squadron, U.S. Army Air Service. On Aug. 25, 1941, Army Air Corps Station No. 8 was officially designated as Keesler Army Airfield.

When the War Department activated Keesler Field, the local community thought it was getting a technical training center with a student population that might peak at 20,000. Not only was Keesler to house a technical training center, but it would also host one of the Army’s newest replacement or basic training centers. Keesler’s population almost doubled overnight.

The first shipment of recruits arrived at Keesler Field on Aug. 21, 1941. During World War II, the Army’s basic training program was little more than a reception process. At Keesler, basic training lasted four weeks, during which classifiers determined the type of follow-on schooling that each recruit would receive. Many stayed at Keesler to become airplane and engine mechanics, while others transferred to aerial gunnery or aviation cadet schools. By September 1944, the number of recruits had dropped, but the workload remained constant, as Keesler personnel began processing veteran ground troops and combat crews who had returned from duty overseas for additional training and follow-on assignments.

Technical training school officers and staff began arriving at Keesler Field in mid-July 1941. The new academic buildings were still under construction when the Airplane and Engine Mechanics School opened. Basic Branch students received instruction in five barracks buildings; Instructor Branch students were assigned to temporary classrooms set up in commandeered circus tents. In mid-1942, the Army Air Forces (AAF) directed Keesler to focus upon the training of mechanics for B-24 Liberator heavy bombers. Over time, Keesler gradually replaced the military instructors with civilian instructors, including many women. Generally unknown to most was the role that the Tuskegee Airmen and other black troops played at Keesler. In fact, more than 7,000 black servicemen were stationed at Keesler Field by the autumn of 1943. These soldiers included pre-aviation cadets, radio operators, aviation technicians, bombardiers and aviation mechanics.

In late May 1947, the AAF announced plans to move its Radar School from Boca Raton, Florida, to Keesler. The Radar School officially arrived Nov. 14, 1947, making Keesler responsible for operating the two largest military technical schools in the U.S. Meanwhile, in September 1947, the U.S. Air Force became an independent branch of the armed services. Keesler Field was officially redesignated as an Air Force base Jan. 13, 1948.

In August 1950, Keesler embarked on a major rebuilding program to upgrade its facilities across the board. The first phase of this project called for the construction of a new electronics laboratory, barracks and a dining hall. In 1951, Congress appropriated an additional $44 million to complete Keesler’s reconstruction. Plans included four two-story academic buildings (later named Allee, Dolan, Thomson and Wolfe halls), a 352-bed hospital, modern family housing units and a three-story dormitory complex dubbed “the triangle” because of its distinctive layout.

Keesler’s modernization required more than expanded facilities. For example, Keesler began using television instruction methods as early as June 1953. In 1950, Keesler offered only 14 generalized courses, but by December 1959 that number had grown to 116, including vital U.S. Air Force programs such as the aircraft warning and control system.

In early 1956, Keesler entered the missile age by opening a ground support training program for the SM-65 Atlas intercontinental ballistic missile. In addition, school personnel were developing training methods for the newly adopted semi-automatic ground environment (SAGE) system, an integrated defense net intended to protect the United States from Soviet air attack. By 1960 the school at Keesler had earned a solid reputation for high-technology training, offering courses in radar, communications and electronics.

Keesler remained the largest training base within Air Training Command throughout the 1970s, and it continued to stay on the cutting edge

of electronics technology, instructing students in new systems such as the worldwide military command and control system and the 407L radar system. The school was the country’s main supplier of electronics technicians. Keesler’s student load dropped to an all-time low after the Vietnam War ended, and Air Force officials responded to changing social conditions by re-examining the school’s teaching functions. As a result, Air Training Command inactivated the USAF School of Applied Aerospace Sciences on April 1, 1977, and replaced it with the 3300th Technical Training Wing, which activated the same day.

Beginning in 1984, school officials worked with Air Force Communications Command’s 1872nd School Squadron to develop prototype training programs using interactive videodisc (IVD) technology, which soon supported a variety of Keesler interactive course offerings. Keesler’s Wall Studio IVD production capability was one of only two in the entire Air Force and supported many organizations Air Force-wide. With base closures forcing an end to technical training at Chanute and Lowry Air Force bases, Keesler’s growing importance as a technical university would become even more firmly fixed. The first additions arrived in 1990, as Keesler acquired Chanute’s weather forecasting courses. Lowry’s metrology and precision maintenance electronics laboratory training program followed in 1992-1993.

Restructuring efforts similarly affected units assigned to Keesler Technical Training Center. In February 1992, Air Training Command redesignated the base’s host unit as the Keesler Training Center. The 3300th Technical Training Wing was downsized to become a group, and its component technical training groups became squadrons. The 3305th Student Group also inactivated along with its subordinate squadrons.

At the beginning of the 21st century, the 81st Training Wing and Keesler Air Force Base were one of the largest technical training wings in the U.S. Air Force and in Air Education and Training Command. The 81st Training Wing has trained thousands of airmen and hundreds of Air Force officers as well as military members from the Navy, Army, Marines, Coast Guard and allied nations.

Organizations

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE

Second Air Force

The Second Air Force’s mission is to produce the world’s best-trained, combat-ready forces. To do so, the Second Air Force manages all operational aspects of nearly 2,700 active training courses taught to approximately 150,000 students annually in technical training, basic military training, initial skills training, advanced technical training and distance learning courses. Training operations across Second Air Force range from intelligence to computer operations to space and missile operations and maintenance.

Courses are primarily taught at four resident training wings: Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi; Goodfellow, Lackland and Sheppard Air Force bases, Texas; a training group at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California; and a network of 92 field training units around the world. Second Air Force also trains and provides oversight of airmen completing Army training prior to tasking missions.

81st Training Wing

The 81st Training Wing is in a constant state of transition as it seeks excellence in all it does. It is composed of several Wing Staff agencies and three large groups of squadrons. The groups are the 81st Training Group, the 81st Medical Group and the 81st Mission Support Group.

The 81st Training Wing is an important link in the chain through Second Air Force, established by Headquarters Air Education and Training Command, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas. The largest training mission is to take young men and women, many fresh from basic military training, and teach them skills to benefit the nation and the Air Force as well as sister services and foreign countries. Keesler also does advanced training for doctors, nurses and technicians in medical specialties.

81st Training Group

Keesler’s training mission is the responsibility of the 81st Training Group — the largest electronics training group in the world. On any given day, more than 3,500 students attend classes in one of more than 500 courses. Accredited by the Commission of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the group is a Community College of the Air Force institution.

The 81st Training Group annually provides training to more than 20,000 officers, airmen and civilian employees of the Air Force, Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard, Army, Navy, Marine Corps, other DOD agencies and DOD contractors, as well as allied nations.

Technical resident courses include career fields such as personnel, information management, air traffic control, finance, manpower, communications-electronics maintenance, computer operation, maintenance and programming, weather, metrology, aircraft warning and control systems, and radio operations. Seven other locations provide additional training, including tactical air control, postal operations, satellite-wideband equipment maintenance and visual information.

In addition to resident, nonresident and mobile training team courses, the group develops training literature for extension and career development courses in support of Air Force on-the-job training. Computer-based or -assisted instructional programs and interactive video programs enhancing technologies in classrooms, simulations and other trainer systems are built here and used worldwide. Since 1942, Keesler has graduated more than 2.2 million students.

81st Medical Group

The 81st Medical Group operates one of the largest Air Force medical facilities. Its primary mission is to maintain medical readiness for worldwide contingencies by providing quality, cost-effective health care for more than 30,000 enrollees, including almost 7,500 active-duty members. In addition, the 81st MDG commander oversees the Gulf Coast Multi-Service Market, which includes five military medical treatment facilities from Mobile, Alabama, to New Orleans, coordinating care for 80,000 eligible beneficiaries along the Gulf Coast.

81st Mission Support Group

“Excellence” is the watchword of Keesler’s largest support organization, the 81st Mission Support Group. Working with a team of more than 1,600 personnel, the Mission Support Group provides administrative, personnel, civil engineering, transportation, morale and welfare, recreational, communications, supply, base security and contracting services to an estimated 75,000 people who use base facilities and resources. The ability to bring these resources together for the betterment of Keesler Air Force Base and its population is why its motto is “One Team, One Fight!”

85th Engineering Installation Squadron

Keesler is also home to the 85th Engineering Installation Squadron (EIS) of the 688th Cyberspace Wing, which is the Air Force’s only active-duty engineering installation squadron. The almost 200 Air Force Space Command airmen and civilians of the 85th EIS can design, engineer and install the full range of C&I equipment and components typically found at a fixed site and other specialty systems unique to expeditionary forces. They are also the only organization in the DOD to provide specialized engineering services such as electromagnetic hazard and interference investigations and High Altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (HEMP) protection. During contingencies, the 85th EIS can deliver their unique skills to the warfighter within 72 hours — anywhere in the world, which is why their motto is, “With Pride, Worldwide!”

403rd Wing

The 403rd Wing, an Air Force Reserve tenant unit at Keesler, is the only DOD unit tasked to organize, equip, train and perform all hurricane weather reconnaissance in support of the Department of Commerce. The 403rd Wing is a subordinate unit of 22nd Air Force headquartered at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia, and the Air Force Reserve Command, with headquarters at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia. In wartime or a contingency, the 403rd Wing reports to Air Mobility Command at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois.

The 403rd Wing provides command and staff supervision to assigned squadrons and flights in support of tactical airlift missions, weather reconnaissance and combat support. When mobilized, the 403rd is gained by the AMC and executes missions in support of the theater commander, to include resupply, employment operations within the combat zone or forward area, and when required, aeromedical refugee evacuation and augmentation of other airlift forces.

Assigned Organizations

  • 403rd Operations Group
  • 403rd Operations Support Flight
  • 815th Airlift Squadron
  • 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron
  • 345th Airlift Squadron (19th Airlift Wing, Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas)
  • 403rd Maintenance Group
  • 403rd Maintenance Operations Flight
  • 403rd Maintenance Squadron
  • 403rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
  • 403rd Mission Support Group
  • 403rd Civil Engineer Squadron
  • 403rd Communications Flight
  • 403rd Force Support Squadron
  • 403rd Security Forces Squadron
  • 403rd Logistics Readiness Squadron
  • 41st Aerial Port Squadron
  • 403rd Aeromedical Staging Squadron
  • 96th Aerial Port Squadron (Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas)

Arrival

See the Getting To & Around Harrison County chapter on Page 34 for information about local airports, train service and public transportation. The closest commercial flights land at Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport in Gulfport, about 20 miles from the base. Transportation is not provided to the base.

SPONSORSHIP

Contact your sponsor and advise them of your estimated arrival time and flight information, if applicable, prior to your arrival at Keesler Air Force Base.

Sponsorship is vital to the relocation process. Don’t PCS without talking to your sponsor before departing for Keesler Air Force Base. Your sponsor will answer any questions you have about the base and the local area, make lodging or dorm arrangements, and meet you upon arrival. Your sponsor will be there to help you and your family until you are settled into your new community.

If you have not been in touch with a sponsor and your departure is nearing, contact your gaining unit or call the Airman & Family Readiness Center at 228-376-8728.

DRIVING DIRECTIONS

Cellphone use by the driver of a moving motor vehicle is prohibited on all Department of Defense installations, unless the cellphone is used with a hands-free device.

From Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport

Travelers leaving from the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport, New Orleans International Airport and anywhere west of Keesler Air Force Base should take Interstate 10 east. Proceed to Interstate 110 south and follow signs to Keesler Air Force Base.

From the East

Travelers leaving anywhere east of Keesler Air Force Base should take I-10 west and proceed to I-110 south. Signs on the interstate will direct you to the I-110 connector that leads to Biloxi and Keesler Air Force Base. Exit I-110 at U.S. 90 west and take U.S. 90 west to the second traffic light, White Avenue, then turn right. White Avenue directs you to the main gate.

You will travel straight into the base on Larcher Boulevard. Tyer House, where you check in for lodging, is the 24-hour arrival point. Tyer House can be located by driving straight on Larcher until you come to the medical center, turn left and Tyer House will be located on your right. Upon checking in, remember to contact your sponsor for additional direction and information.

CHECK-IN PROCEDURES

Visitors’ Center, Pass and Registration

310 M St., White Avenue Gate
Building 4605 | 228-377-3844

When you arrive at Keesler Air Force Base, your first step is to contact your unit. Your supervisor or sponsor will direct you to Military Personnel Section/Force Management (Sablich Center, Room 121). Newcomers must turn in their inprocessing package (a large sealed envelope) and a copy of their orders at the center. The office will inprocess you to the base and provide you with your unit’s specific checklist. There you will be scheduled for two additional informational briefings: inprocessing/finance and newcomers. Spouses are invited and encouraged to attend the newcomers’ orientation to learn much about the base, community, environmental conditions, services and programs. Then, report to your unit to inprocess.

If you arrive after duty hours or on a weekend or holiday, go to the 24-hour arrival point, the Inns of Keesler in Building 470.

Newcomers Orientation Event

All newly assigned members will attend the Newcomers’ Reception within the first month of arriving. The Newcomers’ Reception is on the inprocessing checklist and is scheduled by the Military Personnel Section. The reception is held from 8 a.m. to noon the third Wednesday of every month at the Sablich Center, Room 108. The Newcomers’ Reception is open to all newcomers: military personnel, DOD civilians, spouses and their family members; however, it is a mandatory formation for all newly assigned military members.

Technical Training Students

Technical Training Students (nonprior service) will arrive by airplane from Lackland Air Force Base. They normally arrive on Monday. All inprocessing for nonprior service students is in the Student Personnel Center in the Levitow Building. The first few days are filled with briefings and appointments that will keep students busy. Family members will not be able to spend much time together.

Air Force Reserve/Guard

The liaison office of the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve Command is the focal point for all coordination, questions, situations, health, welfare and morale issues of the ANG/AFRC 81st Training Wing. This office is in Bryan Hall. All ANG/AFRC students will inprocess and outprocess directly with this office.

TEMPORARY HOUSING

Inns of Keesler

Fisher Street
Building 470 | 228-374-0088

Reservations for temporary lodging facilities can be made as soon as you receive your orders. The Inns of Keesler (also known as Tyer House) offers a full range of options, and limited pet-friendly quarters are available.

If you are relocating to Keesler during the high PCS months, May through August, it is advisable to reserve space at least 60 days in advance. Reservations can be made by calling the Inns of Keesler at 228-374-0088. Reservations are taken 24 hours a day.

Getting Settled

HEALTH CARE

81st Medical Group

Keesler Medical Center
301 Fisher St.

Appointments | 800-700-8603
Emergency | 228-376-0500
Pharmacy | 228-376-4955

www.keesler.af.mil/units/81stmedicalgroup.asp

The 81st Medical Group operates one of the largest Air Force medical facilities in the Air Force. Its primary mission is to maintain medical readiness for worldwide contingencies by providing quality, cost-effective health care for more than 27,000 enrollees, including almost 7,500 active-duty members. In addition, the 81st MDG commander oversees the Gulf Coast Multi-Service Market, which includes five military medical treatment facilities from Mobile, Alabama, to New Orleans, coordinating care for 80,000 eligible beneficiaries along the Gulf Coast.

The group has multiple locations to provide care ranging from mental health to radiology, family advocacy to lab work. For information on locations, hours of operation and procedures visit www.keesler.af.mil/units/81stmedicalgroup.asp.

Keesler Dental Clinic

Building 824 | 228-376-0511

Dental care services are available to active-duty military only. Only emergency dental care is available for other eligible individuals. When services are unavailable, those eligible for medical and dental care are referred to TRICARE.

TRICARE

TRICARE is the health care program for active duty and retirees of the uniformed services, their families and survivors. TRICARE’s primary objectives are to optimize the delivery of health care services in the military’s direct care system for all military health system beneficiaries and attain the highest level of patient satisfaction through the delivery of a world-class health care benefit.

TRICARE coverage is completely portable so it moves with you when you relocate. The TRICARE Prime options include TRICARE Prime and TRICARE Prime Remote in the U.S. and TRICARE Prime Overseas and TRICARE Global Remote Overseas in regions outside of the U.S.

Follow these simple steps to ensure you have no break in coverage when you move:

  • Do not cancel your TRICARE Prime enrollment option before you move.
  • Update your personal information in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) immediately when you arrive at your new location.
  • Select a new primary care manager when moving within the same region or submit a new Prime enrollment form within 30 days if you’re moving to a new region.

Where you are moving will determine which Prime option you will enroll in. If you move to a new Prime service area, transfer your enrollment by submitting a TRICARE Prime Enrollment and PCM Change Form to your regional contractor. Be sure to include all family members who wish to use Prime on the form.

TRICARE Standard and Extra are available to family members only. Active-duty service members are required to enroll in one of the Prime options. TRICARE Standard and Extra are available throughout the U.S., and enrollment is not required. Any active-duty family member who is registered in DEERS may use these programs by seeing any network or non-network provider that is authorized by TRICARE.

If you’re already using TRICARE Standard and Extra, moving is easy. When you arrive at your new location, update your personal information in DEERS immediately. Then find TRICARE-authorized providers in your new area.

Here are a few things to remember about using TRICARE Standard and Extra in a new region:

  • In the U.S., visit your new regional contractor’s website for a list of providers. Remember, if you see network providers, you’ll be using the Extra option and pay lower copayments.
  • If you move to a new region, you’ll have a new claims address for submitting your TRICARE claims.
  • Learn your new region’s prior authorization requirements as these requirements may differ by region.

For a complete description of the different types of coverage programs and regions, please visit www.tricare.mil.

HOUSING

Housing Management Office

300 Patrick Drive | 228-376-8615

www.housing.af.mil/keesler

8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday

The Keesler Air Force Base Housing Management Office is ready to support you in the transition to your new home and community. Use the resources provided to become familiar with the housing options and support services available to you. When you arrive at Keesler Air Force Base, visit the HMO to receive invaluable information, counseling and guidance prior to entering into a written lease or rental or sales contract for housing.

Unaccompanied Housing

508 Sixth St. | 228-377-1730

www.housing.af.mil/keesler/unaccompanied

8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday

Unaccompanied housing is provided for unaccompanied airmen in the ranks of E-1 to E-3 and E-4 with less than three years of service. Each airman is provided a private sleeping room, furnishings, bed linens and supplies required for comfortable living. Permanent party unaccompanied housing consists of single-occupant rooms, a shared bathroom and an in-house laundry facility open 24 hours daily. The campus is within walking distance to the chow hall and Postal Service Center (PSC) mailboxes.

Unaccompanied airmen in the rank of E-4 with more than three years of service will move into housing in the local community.

Keesler Family Housing

Forest City Military Communities
300 Patrick Drive | 228-374-5336

www.fckeeslerafb.com

7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday

At Keesler Air Force Base, military family housing is privatized. In addition to your option to purchase and rent housing in the local community, you may now choose to live in privatized housing by signing a tenant lease agreement with Forest City Military Communities, which owns the family housing and is responsible for maintaining, repairing, constructing and managing the community. For comprehensive information about homes and amenities in the Keesler privatized housing community, visit the Forest City Keesler website.

MAIL

Post Office

201 Meadows Drive
Biloxi, MS 39534 | 228-374-7276

8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, closed Saturday and Sunday

The full-service post office on base provides window service weekdays, and the lockbox lobby is always open. To receive mail for general delivery, use the following address:

Your Name/Rank
General Delivery
Keesler AFB, MS 39534

If you plan to reside in the dormitory permanently, request a PSC mailbox in advance. Send your sponsor a copy of your orders and request the sponsor obtain a PSC box assignment from the center for you. A locator card must be filled out to receive mail at the general delivery address.

PETS

Veterinary Services

Building 408 | 228-376-7495

Keesler’s veterinary clinic offers immunizations, heartworm testing, microchipping and outpatient services to dogs and cats only.

Health certificates are also available for animals that will be traveling. Services are by appointment only. All pets residing in base housing must be registered with the Veterinary Treatment Facility within 10 days of arrival. Proof of rabies immunization is required of all cats and dogs over 4 months of age at the time of registration.

RELIGIOUS GUIDANCE

Keesler Base Chapel

311 Larcher Blvd. | 228-377-4859

www.keesler.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=4977

The U.S. Air Force Chaplain Corps is dedicated to preserving your right to worship. It provides, or finds a way to provide, for a broad spectrum of worshipers. If you are seeking spiritual support for any denomination or faith group, it will do its best to assist you.

The Keesler Air Force Base chapel offers various types of counseling and seminars to include premarital, marital, religious, stress, grief and loss, etc. All counseling sessions are covered by privileged communication.

Catholic Services

  • Tuesday and Thursday Mass, 11:30 a.m., Hospital Chapel
  • Sunday Mass, 10:30 a.m., Triangle Chapel
  • Sacrament of Reconciliation is by appointment only, please call 377-4859 to schedule

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

  • Service Member Branch, 1 p.m. Sunday, Triangle Chapel

Protestant Services

  • Community service, 9 a.m. Sunday, Triangle Chapel
  • Gospel service, 12 p.m. Sunday, Triangle Chapel

Islamic Services

  • Salaat ul-Jummah congregational prayer, noon Friday, Building 2003

VEHICLE REGISTRATION

There is no longer a requirement to register your vehicles with Keesler Air Force Base. All privately owned vehicles on base must be insured, and a current license plate is required. Mississippi state traffic laws apply on base; see the Getting To & Around Harrison County chapter on Page 34 for more information. All vehicles entering or leaving base are subject to search.

Serving You

DINING

For hours of operation, menus and special event information, visit www.keesler81fss.us/Dining-Fac2.html.

11th Frame Cafe

Building 1203 | 228-377-2036

Azalea Dining Facility

611 Parade Lane
Building 6960 | 228-377-3409

Live Oak Dining Facility

505 E St.
Building 2001 | 228-377-3854

Magnolia Dining Facility

216 Ploesti Drive
Building 7409 | 228-377-4368

EDUCATION

Education and Training Center

500 Fisher St. | 228-376-8708

8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

The Education and Training Center provides educational opportunities and counseling services to all Air Force members assigned to Keesler Air Force Base, active-duty personnel, DOD civilian employees, adult family members and military retirees.

There are several on-base universities represented — Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, William Carey University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and the University of Southern Mississippi. Active-duty members, their spouses and dependents are eligible for in-state tuition rates to Mississippi public colleges and universities while assigned within Mississippi.

FAMILY SUPPORT

Airman & Family Readiness Center

500 Fisher St.
Building 701, Room 110 | 228-376-8728

www.keesler81fss.us/AFRC.html

8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday

Airman & Family Readiness Centers are one-stop information and referral centers and are the cornerstone of the Keesler family support system, helping airmen and their families enhance their quality of life.

Programs include Volunteerism, Transition Assistance, Air Force Aid Society, Exceptional Family Member, Money Matters, Relocation Assistance and much more. For detailed program information, visit the A&FRC website.

Child Development Center

604 J St., Building 308 | 228-377-2211

www.keesler81fss.us/CDC2.html

5:30 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. Monday through Friday

Keeler’s Child Development Center offer weekly care for children 6 weeks to 5 years old, and hourly care is available on a space-available basis with reservations. The center provides a safe, nurturing environment that promotes the social, cognitive, language and physical development of youngsters. It is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and follows standards set by the Air Force Services Agency.

Children of active-duty military personnel, DOD civilian personnel, reservists on active duty and DOD contractors are eligible. Fees are based on total family income. Registration requires a completed DD Form 2606, immunization records, leave and earnings statements, and emergency contact info.

Exceptional Family Member Program

500 Fisher St. | 228-376-8513

This program provides special-needs families with information and referral services.

Family Child Care

500 Fisher St,
Building 701, Room 204 | 228-377-5935

www.keesler81fss.us/FCC2.html

Family Child Care provides an alternative to Child Development Center care for families that need evening care, weekend care, care for children with special needs, infants and school-age children, as well as care during swing and midnight shifts.

The program also offers an opportunity for spouses to contribute to the family income while caring for their own children.

FCC providers are well-trained, they and their family members undergo a thorough background check and their homes are inspected for fire safety, health, safety and other requirements. In addition, their homes are monitored on a regular basis (at least monthly) by the program staff.

School Liaison Office

500 Fisher St., Room 110 | 228-376-8505

The school liaison office is the connection between Keesler Air Force Base families and private and public schools. The office provides support to service members during all stages of transition and deployment to ensure children receive every opportunity for quality education.

Youth Center

603 J St.
Building 6801 | 228-377-4116

www.keesler81fss.us/YC.html

The Keesler Air Force Base Youth Center is for children age 9 to 18 years old. It offers a wide variety of activities that focus on character and leadership development, education and career development, health and life skills, the arts, informal youth sports, and fitness and recreation. The School-Age Program offers before- and after-school care as well as a full-time vacation program for children in kindergarten through sixth grade. It is accredited by the National AfterSchool Association.

Hours vary depending on school schedule; see the website for up-to-date information, including registration deadlines.

FINANCIAL SERVICES

Keesler Air Force Base

Keesler Federal Credit Union
2602 Pass Road | 888-KEESLER

www.kfcu.org

8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

LEGAL SERVICES

Legal Office

500 Fisher St.
Building 701, Room 227 | 228-376-8601

Legal assistance is available to active-duty personnel (including National Guard personnel and reservists on Title 10 status), their dependents and retired military personnel, regardless of service branch or unit of assignment. Attorney-client confidentiality is strictly observed. Types of services include: power of attorney, notary service, basic wills, living wills, information on other legal matters (bankruptcy, soldiers and sailors relief act, etc.) and referrals for other legal matters.

RECREATION

For detailed information about the recreational programs at Keesler Air Force Base, visit the 81st Force Support Squadron online at www.keesler81fss.us.

Arts and Crafts Center

109 G St.
Building 5904
228-377-2821

www.keesler81fss.us/ArtsandCrafts2.html

Feeling crafty? Unleash your creativity using the center’s tools and tables for outlets such as ceramics, painting, engraving, shadowboxes, framing and more. Check the website for hours of each specific shop.

Auto Hobby Shop

109 G St.
Building 6005
228-377-3872

www.keesler81fss.us/Auto-Hobby-Shop2.html

Noon to 7 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

Do your own automobile maintenance at the center using its stalls, lifts and tools. It also offers auto classes for do-it-yourselfers, and mechanics if you prefer to leave the repairs in expert hands.

Bay Breeze Collocated Club

500 Ploesti Drive
Building 6732
228-377-2334

This all-ranks club overlooking the Biloxi Back Bay provides a great gathering spot for any event: birthdays, re-enlistments, anniversaries and more. The lounge serves food and beverages, and catering is available as well.

Bay Breeze Golf Course and Driving Range

500 Ploesti Drive
Building 6732
228-377-3832

Open daily 7 a.m. to dusk

Get into the swing of things at this 18-hole, par-71 golf course featuring a driving range, pitching and putting greens, and a pro shop. Golf lessons are available upon request.

Fitness Centers

www.keesler81fss.us/Fitness-Centers2.html

Three fitness centers offer so many programs you’ll always be motivated toward your next workout. In addition to free fitness classes and a variety of cardio and weight equipment, the centers also feature racquetball courts, boxing rooms, massage therapy, intramural sports, dodgeball and kickball tournaments, herbal body wraps and more. Visit the website for more information — such as general hours, lists of fitness classes, etc.

Blake Fitness Center

1201 H St.
Building 1201
228-377-4385

Dragon Fitness Center

606 Chappie James Blvd.
Building 4106
228-377-4409

Triangle Fitness Center

7504 Falcon St.
Building 7504
228-377-3056

Gaudé Lanes Bowling Center

409 G St.
Building 1203
228-377-2817

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday, noon to 6 p.m.
Sunday

Strike up some family fun at the bowling center. Shoe rental, professional instruction, bowling leagues, free Wi-Fi and a snack bar are available.

Information, Tickets & Travel

500 Ploesti Drive
Building 6732
228-377-3818

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to noon Saturday

Find information and get military discount tickets for regional attractions, including Graceland, RainForest Adventures Discovery Zoo, Six Flags and more.

Whatever travel destinations you seek, the ITT staff can also help you plan your trips with assistance with airline tickets, hotels, rental cars and even cruises.

Fam-Camp

2003 Atkinson Road
228-377-9050

www.keesler81fss.us/FamCamp2.html

8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

Fam-Camp provides an economical way for families to hit the road and vacation. Reserve a spot for your RV and enjoy complete hookups for water, electric, sewer and cable. Visit the website for fees and more information on reservations.

Outdoor Recreation and Marina

625 Marina Drive
Building 6734
228-377-3160

7 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily

Outdoor recreation has equipment rentals, the Outdoor Adventure program, family camping, sailing lessons, fishing excursions, paintball, disc golf, recreational vehicle storage, open air pavilions and more. Services are available to military ID cardholders.

Equipment rental is one of the most popular programs, offering everything from lawn and garden items to camping and boating equipment, as well as sports gear and tools.

SHOPPING

Keesler Commissary

508 Larcher Blvd.
228-377-4288

www.commissaries.com

9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily

Save an average of 30 percent of your hard-earned dollars when shopping for groceries at the Keesler Commissary. In-store amenities and specialties include an ATM, bakery, custom photo cakes, deli, fresh sandwiches to go, hot foods department and plants.

Keesler Exchange

www.shopmyexchange.com/exchange-stores/United%20States/MS/Biloxi/Keesler-AFB--1032749?searched=true&state=MS

The Keesler Air Force Base Exchange wants to be your first choice for shopping. It offers a price-match program that guarantees the lowest prices in town. Hours of operation for services outside of the Main Exchange vary, so call or visit the website for detailed information.

Main Exchange

506 Larcher Blvd.
Building 2306
228-435-2524

Exchange Mobile Center | 228-432-8243
Military Clothing Store | 228-435-3579

Exchange Restaurants

Baskin-Robbins | 228-435-1191
Charley’s Grilled Subs | 228-435-1191
Manchu Wok | 228-435-1191
Starbucks Coffee | 228-435-3661
Taco Bell | 228-435-1191

Concessions

Asian Gifts | 228-374-2382
Barbershop | 228-436-9505
Floral Shop | 228-435-9012
GNC | 228-432-2594
GameStop | 228-436-9728
Nail Shop | 228-374-9350
Optical Shop | 228-435-4418
Optometry | 228-432-8272

Express with Class Six/DVD Rental/Firestone

Building 1510 | 228-432-2404
Barbershop | 228-435-7590
Enterprise Car Rental | 228-436-9248
Firestone Auto Care | 228-436-7701

Triangle Mini Mall Exchange

Building 6970 | 228-436-6608
Barbershop | 228-432-7224
Beauty Shop | 228-432-8765
Express/Instaflix DVD Kiosk | 228-436-6608
GNC | 228-435-1000
Laundry/Dry Cleaning | 228-374-6993
Military Clothing Store | 228-435-3579

Our Military at Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport

Location

You can find Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport on the beachfront of the Gulf of Mexico, in Harrison County in the city of Gulfport, Mississippi. The center is home to the Atlantic Fleet Seabees, known as the East Coast Seabees. NCBC Gulfport is in the middle of the intermodal system that includes the Mississippi State Port of Gulfport, the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport, Interstate 10 and a regional rail system. New Orleans is only 90 miles west.

Population

The center hosts more than 4,400 active-duty personnel and their families as well as 6,400 retirees and their families, plus nearly 800 DOD civilians.

Base Size

NCBC Gulfport sits on 1,100 acres with 45 tenants in 600 facilities. The center stores millions of dollars in gear and equipment on 500 acres of warehouse space, which contains everything a Seabee battalion needs to deploy — from trucks and weapons to bulldozers and cranes as well as food, ammunition and communications equipment.

About Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport

The center exists to maintain and operate facilities and provide services and material in support of Naval Construction Force Units, to include Amphibious Construction Fleet Units, the Maritime Prepositioning Force (Enhanced), and other fleet and assigned organizational units deployed from or homeported at NCBC Gulfport, and to perform such other functions and tasks as may be assigned by higher authority.

On June 2, 1942, an Advanced Base Depot was established in Gulfport and the first Seabees started arriving. In 1992, the center celebrated its 50th anniversary on the Gulf Coast. Today, the Seabees occupy a special place throughout the mid-South. The men and women of the center have been honored for their distinguished community service and awarded the prestigious Laurel Wreath Award for significant contributions to local communities.

Economic Impact

In fiscal year 2012, NCBC Gulfport had an annual economic impact of $365.3 million and an annual payroll of $245.7 million. The defense contracts total for 263 contracts awarded in Harrison County were valued at nearly $77 million in 2012.

History

America’s long-range defense plans in the early stages of World War II called for an uncongested deep-water port to serve the Caribbean area. Gulfport offered this as well as a moderate, semitropical year-round climate, which permitted training and out-loading in winter and summer. Land for the installation was acquired on a plot a mile northwest of the Port of Gulfport in April 1942, and an Advanced Base Depot was established two months later. An Armed Guard School and a Cooks and Bakers School were added in October 1942, followed by an Advanced Base Receiving Barracks in November, at which time some of the first Seabees were stationed on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The mission of the center changed from a receiving organization to a U.S. Naval Training Center in March 1944 and provided for training in basic engineering, diesel, radioman, quartermaster and electrician’s ratings.

Continuing realignments occurred, creating a single command of the Naval Training Center and the Advanced Base Depot. The depot became the U.S. Naval Storehouse in 1945, and the Training Center was decommissioned in 1946. In 1948, the station became custodian of certain national stockpile materials. Bauxite, tin, copper, sisal and abaca have been stored there in varying quantities since that time. Huge piles of bauxite, the imported ore from which aluminum is extracted, are currently being shipped off base to be made into aluminum. The bauxite covers an estimated 24 of the center’s nearly 1,100 acres.

Old-timers on the coast report that there were times when some 25,000 naval personnel were stationed at the center. They lived in wooden barracks, tents and Quonset huts. Civilian employees fluctuated with the amount of strategic supplies and construction equipment being received, stored and transshipped.

Some important organizational changes were made early in 1952 when the Naval Storehouse was disestablished and the U.S. Naval Construction Battalion Center was established. The Navy’s mushrooming commitments for construction forces in Southeast Asia led the way to an increased mission for the center in February 1966. Ten months later, the center had expanded to include new functions such as Seabee Team Training and a new tenant, Construction Training Unit. The staff for the Naval Construction Battalion Center had expanded to 183 military and 523 civilian personnel to support approximately 4,200 Seabees. A personnel training facility, inactive for 20 years, was effectively forming, staging, training and homeporting first two, then five, seven and now four mobile construction battalions.

The impact on the community made by the Seabees and their associates has been astounding. The first group of 509 Seabees arrived unannounced from Davisville, Rhode Island, in March 1966. The first few hours of cooperation between Seabees and the civilian community set the pattern for an association that has since grown into the mutual admiration society it is today. Gulf Coast residents refer to the Seabees as “Our Navy.” They use every opportunity to show their admiration for the fighters and builders. And the Seabees respond in kind. From the beginning they have been good citizens, active in community affairs and taking the lead in many segments of community life.

Seabee assistance to the Gulf Coast following Hurricane Camille captured the attention of news media nationwide and earned the NCBC and supporting commands the Navy Unit Commendation for the part they played in recovery operations. Seabees also worked long and hard following Hurricane Katrina. Seabee volunteers contributed more than 6,000 hours assisting in the local community since Hurricane Katrina, and they continue to be good neighbors answering various requests for help from the local community on a daily basis.

In the midst of the Gulf Coast recovery process, the Seabee Center built more than $300 million in new facilities as a result of damage caused by Hurricane Katrina. Permanent repairs, which include the Military Construction Program Recapitalization Plan, are underway.

The Gulfport Seabee Center is one of the finest installations the Navy has. With military readiness as its primary concern, it is the Navy’s best homeport, mobilization base and logistics support center; the leader in efficient base operations; No. 1 in innovative technology; and the finest in sound business practices.

Organizations

NAVAL CONSTRUCTION BATTALION CENTER GULFPORT

This base is home to the Atlantic Fleet Seabees. The active units currently stationed at Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport include:

  • 20th Seabee Readiness Group
  • 22nd Naval Construction Regiment
  • 25th Naval Construction Regiment
  • Inspector-Instructor Staff
  • Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center
  • Naval Construction Training Center
  • Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 1
  • Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 11
  • Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 74
  • Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 133

There are also more than 45 tenants who call the base home.

Arrival

See the Getting To & Around Harrison County chapter on Page 34 for information about local airports, train service and public transportation. The closest commercial flights land at Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport, about 7 miles from the base. Transportation is not provided to the base.

SPONSORSHIP

If you have not been assigned a sponsor from your gaining unit, contact the quarterdeck of your command and request a sponsor. This request should be part of every PCS move. Your sponsor will answer any questions you have about the base and the local area, make lodging and dorm arrangements, and meet you upon arrival. Your sponsor will be there to help you and your family until you are settled into your new community.

DRIVING DIRECTIONS

Cellphone use by the driver of a moving motor vehicle is prohibited on all Department of Defense installations, unless the cellphone is used with a hands-free device.

From Regional Airports

The closest commercial airport is the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport. Airlines serving Gulfport-Biloxi Airport include: American Airlines, Delta, United and US Airways. Taxi service to Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport from the airport costs an average of $15 to $20. There is also an airport in New Orleans approximately one hour west of Gulfport. Most major carriers including American, JetBlue, United and Southwest Airlines serve the New Orleans airport.

Contact your sponsor and advise them of your estimated arrival time and flight information, if applicable, prior to your arrival at NCBC Gulfport.

Driving Directions

Take Interstate 10 Exit 34A to Highway 49 south toward Highway 90 (the beach). Turn right on Highway 90. Go to the third traffic light (Broad Avenue), and turn right on Broad Avenue, which will dead end at the main gate. The visitor and pass office is at the Broad Avenue gate.

From the Airport

Take Highway 49 south until the Naval Construction Battalion road sign is visible. Take a right on Pass Road, and this will lead you into Gate 2. If you need a visitor pass, you must go to the Broad Avenue gate.

CHECK-IN PROCEDURES

Relocation Assistance

5301 Snead St.
Building 30
800-342-3525

7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friday

The Fleet & Family Support Center can help you prepare for your PCS move. It offers services to help you manage the financial aspects of your move, help you settle into your new community and provide information about the Mississippi Gulf Coast area. Lending Locker items are available to active-duty service members on PCS orders. Call for more information.

Reporting Procedures

All check-ins will report to their respective commands during duty hours. Prior arrival arrangements should be made through the command sponsor coordinator. After-hours check-in will be done through Naval Construction Battalion Center quarterdeck, which can be contacted at 228-871-2555.

If you marry before your PCS, you must inform your command and follow the procedures exactly as given. Failure to follow proper procedure will result in the military not paying for travel or housing of your spouse. The same policy is true for moving personal effects (household goods) to your new duty assignment. You must have prior approval from the Military Transportation Office. The Gulfport office can be contacted at 228-871-4741.

TEMPORARY HOUSING

Combined Bachelor Housing

5401 Sixth St.
Building 314 | 228-871-2505

7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday

Numerous hotels and motels are within 3 miles of the base, and Combined Bachelor Housing office can supply a list of those closest to Naval Construction Battalion Center. Combined Bachelor Housing has transient rooms for personnel on official travel orders, pay grades E-1 to O-10. Rates vary based on rank. Reservations can be made prior to arrival. No pets.

Stethem Memorial Navy Lodge

First Street
Building 463 | 228-864-3101

6 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily

The Navy Lodge offers complimentary breakfast, Wi-Fi and newspapers to its guests — plus, room rates can be up to 45 percent less than civilian hotels. All accommodations are air conditioned with private baths and family accommodations. The lodge is nonsmoking, and pet-friendly rooms may be available. For reservations, call or go to www.navy-lodge.com/lodge_page.html?p_lodge_number=26.

Getting Settled

HEALTH CARE

Naval Branch Health Clinic Gulfport

5501 Marvin Shields Blvd. | 228-871-2810
Appointments | 877-879-1621
Dental | 228-871-2605

Deployment Health

and Readiness Team | 228-822-5715
Health Benefits Advisor | 228-871-2821
Occupational Health | 228-822-5780
On-base Emergency | 228-871-2333
Pharmacy Refills | 888-513-4164
Radiology | 228-871-2813
Wellness Center | 228-871-2256

www.med.navy.mil/sites/pcola/nbhc/NcbcGulfport

Provider appointments: 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Ancillary services: 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

TRICARE

TRICARE is the health care program for active duty and retirees of the uniformed services, their families and survivors. TRICARE’s primary objectives are to optimize the delivery of health care services in the military’s direct care system for all military health system beneficiaries and attain the highest level of patient satisfaction through the delivery of a world-class health care benefit.

TRICARE coverage is completely portable so it moves with you when you relocate. The TRICARE Prime options include TRICARE Prime and TRICARE Prime Remote in the U.S. and TRICARE Prime Overseas and TRICARE Global Remote Overseas in regions outside of the U.S.

Follow these simple steps to ensure you have no break in coverage when you move:

  • Do not cancel your TRICARE Prime enrollment option before you move.
  • Update your personal information in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) immediately when you arrive at your new location.
  • Select a new primary care manager when moving within the same region or submit a new Prime enrollment form within 30 days if you’re moving to a new region.

Where you are moving will determine which Prime option you will enroll in. If you move to a new Prime service area, transfer your enrollment by submitting a TRICARE Prime Enrollment and PCM Change Form to your regional contractor. Be sure to include all family members who wish to use Prime on the form.

TRICARE Standard and Extra are available to family members only. Active-duty service members are required to enroll in one of the Prime options. TRICARE Standard and Extra are available throughout the U.S., and enrollment is not required. Any active-duty family member who is registered in DEERS may use these programs by seeing any network or non-network provider that is authorized by TRICARE.

If you’re already using TRICARE Standard and Extra, moving is easy. When you arrive at your new location, update your personal information in DEERS immediately. Then find ­TRICARE-authorized providers in your new area.

Here are a few things to remember about using TRICARE Standard and Extra in a new region:

  • In the U.S., visit your new regional contractor’s website for a list of providers. Remember, if you see network providers, you’ll be using the Extra option and pay lower copayments.
  • If you move to a new region, you’ll have a new claims address for submitting your TRICARE claims.
  • Learn your new region’s prior authorization requirements as these requirements may differ by region.

For a complete description of the different types of coverage programs and regions, please visit www.tricare.mil.

HOUSING

Housing Service Center

3502 E. Eighth St.
Family Housing | 228-871-2586
Unaccompanied Personnel Housing | 228-871-2505

7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday

The Housing Service Center provides housing support for all of the service members assigned to NCBC Gulfport and their accompanying family members. The center helps locate suitable and affordable housing with a range of housing options that include privatized family housing and barracks for unaccompanied personnel and students. It also provides services to assist customers in locating housing in the local community.

Unaccompanied Housing is conveniently located near the center of the base on Sixth Street, allowing immediate access to the main dining facility, chapel, gym and fitness center. It’s just a short walk away from the Navy Exchange, commissary, McDonald’s and the MWR Liberty Center.

To get started, contact the Housing Service Center for personalized support.

Balfour Beatty Communities

3502 E. Eighth St.
Building 452 | 855-289-2621

8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday (open until 7 p.m. Wednesday), 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday

At Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport, military family housing is privatized. The Navy manages the application of housing and the waitlist, and Balfour Beatty Communities makes the assignment and is responsible for all property management and meeting residents’ day-to-day housing needs.

For comprehensive information about the privatized housing community at Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport, visit the Balfour Beatty website at www.ncbcgulfporthomes.com.

MAIL

Post Office

5301 Bainbridge Ave.
Gulfport, MS 39501
228-871-2259

7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday

PETS

Only two pets are permitted for those who reside in base housing. No exotic pets are allowed (snakes, farm animals, ferrets, etc.) or pit bulls. Pets must be registered within five days after initial occupancy and annually at the Housing Office with proof of vaccination (rabies). Gulfport does not have an on-base veterinary service. Service members are encouraged to visit local area veterinarians for animal care. Limited services are available through the Veterinary Treatment Center at Keesler Air Force Base.

RELIGIOUS GUIDANCE

Seabee Memorial Chapel

Building 366 | 228-871-2454

www.fb.com/ncbcchapel

The mission of the chapel is to ready sailors and Marines and their families — demonstrating spiritual, moral and ethical maturity — and to support them by the innovative delivery of religious ministry and compassionate pastoral care. Programs include prevention and relationship enhancement, grief counseling, premarriage counseling, Critical Incident Stress Management & Debriefing Counseling, religious education and other spiritual counseling. A chaplain is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week; to reach the duty chaplain call the quarterdeck at 228-871-2555.

Protestant

  • Sunday service, 10:30 a.m.
  • Sunday school, 9:15 a.m.

Catholic

  • Catholic Mass, 9:30 a.m. Sunday and
    11:15 a.m. Tuesday

Call the chapel for more information about other faiths and services.

VEHICLE REGISTRATION

There is no longer a requirement to register your vehicle with NCBC Gulfport. All privately owned vehicles on base must be insured, and a current license plate is required. Mississippi state traffic laws apply on base; see the Getting To & Around Harrison County chapter on Page 34 for more information. All vehicles entering or leaving base are subject to search.

Serving You

DINING

For hours of operation, menus and special event information, visit www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/cnrse/installations/ncbc_gulfport/ffr/things_to_do/food_and_beverage.html.

Galley (Colmer Dining Facility)

Building | 367 228-871-3460

The Grill

Building 418 | 228-871-2494

McDonald’s

Marvin Shields Boulevard

(Across from Galley) | 228-864-7355

The Snack Bar

Building 446 | 228-871-4775

Subway

Building 174 (NEX Home Gallery/

Garden Shop) | 228-871-5799

EDUCATION

Navy College

Building 60, Room 239 | 228-871-2785

8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday

The Navy College Office, a component of the Navy College Program, provides information on all matters relating to academic programs, including steps to degree completion, authorization of tuition assistance to active-duty Navy and Marine Corps personnel and administration of the on-base education program. Contact the office or visit www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/cnrse/installations/ncbc_gulfport/ffr/navy_college.html for more information.

FAMILY SUPPORT

Child Development Center
& Child Development Homes

1706 Bainbridge Ave.
Building 352
228-871-2323

6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

The Child Development Center offers care for children from 6 weeks old to 5 years of age. The center is based on the developmental program model, which focuses on play and its importance in a child’s learning process. The center is also a part of the 7 percent of programs in the U.S. accredited or pursuing accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Child Development Home programs are provided by authorized family members in base housing or homes off base. Programs serve children 6 weeks to 12 years old and include full-day, part-day and hourly care as well as before- and after-school options. Care is provided in small multiage groups in a home environment. Child development homes must meet state licensing requirements and Navy standards.

COMPASS

www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/cnrse/installations/ncbc_gulfport/om/compass.html

COMPASS is a spouse-to-spouse mentoring program in which participants are introduced to the many aspects of the Navy including its mission and history, customs and traditions, rights and benefits, deployment, pay and more. It is a 12-hour program taught in three four-hour sessions. All Navy spouses are welcome and child care is provided. Email compassgulfport@nsfamilyline.org or call 877-673-7773 for more information.

Exceptional Family Member Program

This program provides special-needs families with detailed information and referral services, individualized service plans and case management from one duty station to the next. Email ncbc_gulfport_ffsc@navy.mil for more information.

Fleet & Family Support Center

5301 Snead St.
Building 30 | 228-871-2581

7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friday

Fleet & Family Support Programs are the cornerstone of the NCBC Gulfport family support system, helping service members and their families enhance their readiness and quality of life.

Navy FFSP are organized into three sub-functional areas: deployment readiness, career support and retention, and crisis response. Services include information and referral, individual clinical and nonclinical consultation, and educational classes and workshops.

Programs include deployment and ombudsman support for sailors and their families, personal and family wellness education and counseling, emergency preparedness and response, crisis intervention and response, military and personal career development, financial education and counseling, relocation assistance, transition assistance, and spouse employment.

School Liaison Office

1706 Bainbridge Ave.
Building 352 | 228-871-2117

The school liaison office is the connection between NCBC Gulfport families and private and public schools. The office provides support to service members during all stages of transition and deployment to ensure children receive every opportunity for quality education. The office also provides subject matter expertise for education-related issues such as postsecondary preparations and special education system navigation.

Youth Activity Center

Building 335 | 228-871-2251

School-age care: 6 to 7:30 a.m. and 2 to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday
Summer camp: 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday
Open youth and teens: 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday
Movie night, dances, pool, teens: 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday

School-age care is available to children of active-duty military, DOD civilians and contractors, and reservists on active duty. Children must be age 5 to 12 and enrolled in school to be eligible.

The center offers a variety of recreation programs for children ages 5 to 18 years old. Some fees apply; call for more information.

FINANCIAL SERVICES

Navy Federal Credit Union

Building 448 | 888-842-6328

www.navyfederal.org

8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday

This member-owned credit union provides the following services: 24-hour ATM at the exchange in Building 314, online banking services, direct deposit, IRAs, traveler’s checks, wire transfers, loans, investment services and more.

LEGAL SERVICES

Naval Legal Service Office

5301 Snead St., Building 30 | 228-871-2620

7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

The Gulfport Branch of Naval Legal Service Office is available to represent all military personnel in military justice matters as well as administrative board proceedings. The office provides general legal assistance to military personnel, their family members and retired military personnel concerning matters of federal and state, civil and criminal law.

RECREATION

For information about recreational programs at NCBC Gulfport, go to www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/cnrse/installations/ncbc_gulfport/ffr/things_to_do.html.

Anchors and Eagles Club

Building 303 | 228-871-4607

2 to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday

Designated as place of relaxation for chiefs and officers, the club has four big-screen TVs with cable and satellite TV and is manned by friendly bartenders. The club is available for rental for special occasions.

Auto Skills Center

Building 397 | 228-871-2804

11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday

Do your own automobile maintenance at the Auto Skills Center using its stalls, lifts and tools. It offers technical assistance, tire mounting and balance, as well as rotor and drum resurfacing.

Aquatics

Building 445 | 228-822-5103

5:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday

This outdoor chlorine pool is 25 meters with 10 lanes. Depth ranges from 4 to 6 feet and the temperature is in the mid-80s year-round.

Beehive All Hands Club

Building 352 | 228-871-4009

4:30 to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4:30 to 11:30 p.m. Friday, 5 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday

Throw darts, shoot pool or just relax with a cold one at the club. It is available for rent for special occasions on Sunday only.

Community Pool

Building 338 | 228-863-0424

10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday

The community pool is managed by Balfour Beatty Communities and is for use by housing residents and their guests.

Fitness Center

Building 445 | 228-871-2668

4:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday

The center has an Olympic weight room, a physical fitness room featuring cardio machines and strength-training equipment, basketball, steam rooms and saunas, as well as two softball fields. Eligible patrons, 18 years or older, may sponsor one guest per visit at no cost.

Information, Tickets and Travel

Building 365 | 228-871-2231

9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Find information and get military discount tickets for regional attractions, including Gulf Island Water Park, Walt Disney World and Universal Studios, New Orleans Saints games and more. Whatever travel destinations you seek, the ITT staff can also help you plan your trips with assistance with airline tickets, hotels and rental cars.

Liberty Center

Building 365 | 228-871-4684

10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sunday, 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 4 to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 4 to 11 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday

The center is the Navy’s home for positive recreational options targeted at 18- to 25-
year-old single or unaccompanied service members. Day trips, recreational-usage computers with Wi-Fi, video game consoles, vending machines and pool, pingpong and foosball tables are just some of the center’s offerings.

Outdoor Recreation

Building 456 | 228-871-2127

8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, closed Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday

Outdoor Recreation offers equipment rentals — from outdoor water sports to bounce houses and party supplies to tools, camping gear and paintball equipment. Reservations may be made up to six months in advance.

Seabee Heritage Center

Building 446 | 228-871-3619

10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

The center’s exhibits depict the history of the Seabees, and the gift store carries a variety of Seabee swag such as challenge coins, T-shirts, flags and jewelry.

Seabee Lake

Pavilions 231, 410 and 411 | 228-871-2127

Canoes and rowboats are available on-site as well as a floating dock in addition to pavilions equipped with a fishing pier, picnic tables, barbecue grills, a covered playground and restroom facilities — everything a family needs to enjoy a day at the lake.

Seabee Parks and Recreational Area

228-871-2127

The Seabee Parks and Recreational Area offers diverse sports recreation including golf, paintball, a dog park, a walking trail and batting cages.

Shields RV Park and Recreational Lodging

453 Katrina Court | 228-871-5435

Shields RV Park is recreational lodging open to all active duty, reservists, dependents, retirees and DOD civilians. Its 68 sites offer amenities such as free cable TV, Wi-Fi, water, sewer and coin-operated laundry. Restrooms and showers are open 24 hours a day. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.

SHOPPING

Gulfport Commissary

1707 CBC Second St.
Building 32 | 228-871-2039

www.commissaries.com

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, closed Monday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Friday and Saturday

Save an average of 30 percent of your hard-earned dollars when shopping for groceries at the Gulfport Commissary. In-store amenities and specialties include a deli, fresh sandwiches to go, plants and sushi.

Gulfport Exchange

www.mynavyexchange.com

The Gulfport Exchange wants to be your first choice for shopping. It offers a price-match ­program that guarantees the lowest prices in town. Hours of operation for services outside of the Main Exchange may vary so call or visit the website for detailed information.

Main Exchange

Building 722 | 228-864-6877

9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday

Concessions

Barbershop | 228-871-2350
Beauty Shop | 228-863-4820
Check Cashing | 228-864-1514
Flower Shop | 228-864-1514
Laundry/Dry Cleaning | 228-863-5078
Navy Pride Shop | 228-864-1514
Package Store | 228-863-4506
Security/Check Collections | 228-871-3243
T-Mobile | 800-957-8997
Tailor Shop | 228-863-5078
Uniform Center | 228-868-6069
Western Union/UPS | 228-864-1514

Mini Mart

Building 470 | 228-864-8565


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