USS KIRK Reunion 2016 – Update #3
Greetings USS KIRK Shipmates and Friends of KIRK,
We hope you are busy planning your trip to Branson during the week of July 18th, and are looking forward to a fun week. Everyone will have a different take on what the week should be like, but if we have a good idea of what to expect day-to-day from the reunion, then we can have a great deal of flexibility in making the very best of our personal time in Branson. So here is a brief look at the organized aspects of our USS KIRK reunion daily schedule:
We will try not to “over-manage” this daily schedule, since there are so many competing attractions in Branson. Our Shipmates will want to make the best of their entertainment week in Branson, as well as spending their time with their old KIRK Shipmates. So, we will leave significant predictable “blocks” of time to just be tourists on vacation.
We will monopolize your time for just one 4-hour “block” each day on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, plus the “all hands” banquet Thursday evening, plus the 2-hour “business meeting” on Friday morning. The rest of the time will be at the discretion of our Shipmates to come and go as they please, with whomever they please. That really has been our experience at all our previous reunions, hasn’t it? (We say “morning” and “afternoon” in the following sample schedule, but those “blocks” could be reversed on any particular day, depending on the circumstances of the day – the only thought is to have a predictable daily 4-hour “block” where we all come together as a band of USS KIRK Shipmates on each of those three specific days.)
— Monday: Arrival day, and getting settled in at the hotel. This day will purposely be one of little structure, allowing our KIRK Shipmates to congregate in the hospitality suite, greet old shipmates and get to know our new arrivals. Drinks and snacks in the hospitality room, and perhaps a very informal and simple buffet-type evening meal. The theme of Monday is purely “reconnection,” fellowship, and brotherhood. And, of course, a chance to begin to explore the many attractions of Branson.
— Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday: the morning “session” each day will be free time, allowing our shipmates to sleep in if they choose (or if they need to!), go to breakfast, and generally “unwind” from the night before. And perhaps optional group tours to various Branson attractions, based on pre-reunion surveys of our shipmates’ interests.
— Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday: the afternoon “session” in the hospitality suite each day after lunch will be structured, and specifically devoted to focusing on the crews of the three separate homeports of KIRK: Tuesday — San Diego; Wednesday — Yokosuka; Thursday — Long Beach. The history and accomplishments of those specific crews should be the highlight of “their day.”
— Thursday evening: Our traditional reunion banquet, with Captain Brad Bell (the last CO of KIRK in Long Beach) as our keynote speaker.
— Friday morning: sleep in, breakfast, unwind until about 10:00 AM, then convene the formal USS KIRK Association Business Meeting, where we will elect new officers across the board, and chart a course into the future for a rejuvenated USS KIRK Association, devoted to the history and accomplishments of ALL 21years, and all three homeport crews of our good ship. The location of next year’s USS KIRK reunion will hopefully be nailed down at this session.
— Friday afternoon: A final “auld lang syne” session as our shipmates check out of the hotel and say their farewells to friends and Shipmates old and new.
We hope this look at the “skeleton” of your week will assist you in your personal plans for your visit to Branson.
And finally, if you have not yet made your hotel reservations, please do so as soon as you can. Here is the information you need:
The Branson Woods Resort
2201 Roark Valley Road
You can reserve your room by calling 877-502-7058, and use the “Group Code” 60-383.
We should have the cost details for the reunion finalized by the next Reunion Update, and we will provide a registration form to be downloaded, completed, and mailed beck along with your check. So keep an eye out for the next update!
On to Branson!