June 13th, 2015

Navy Trooper and Ewok

Garrison Carida Academy Bash and Church Family Dinner

This weekend was the 501st Garrison Carida's (PA/DE/WV) Academy Bash and BBQ. Garrison members met for fellowship and cadets had the opportunity to work on costume builds with help from advisors. I had never been to this event before, so I didn't know what to expect. I was looking forward to meeting friends whom I had met on the forums and who had given me advice as I completed my Navy Trooper costume.

The drive to Milesburg was lovely. It was a cloudy day and the mountains were green. I stopped at the Sheetz along the way to fill up my car and to get an iced latte and breakfast. Then, just a few miles up the road to the community center! The building was a nice size with parking out front. Outside, the air was cool and a bluebird came to say hello. It rained lightly for a short time, but otherwise was overcast and refreshing.

When I got there, folks were already setting up to work on stormtrooper armor shaping, fitting, and assembly. I met the folks who helped me with my costume and others whom I got to know over the past four months. We had fun sitting out on the porch chatting and working on projects. I also got to try on some TIE pilot armor and helmets :3 In fact, a table inside the center had an assembly of all different types of Star Wars Imperial, Bounty Hunter, and other helmets - so fun! For lunch, they grilled burgers, hot dogs, and bbq sausage. I brought deviled eggs and there were plenty of sides and drinks and even donuts left over from breakfast. I sat around most of the morning wearing the TIE breastplate/backplate grinning when people shook their heads at me :P

Later in the afternoon, a few people got photos taken for costume review. My advisor gave me a Garrison patch and some trading cards! We ate watermelon and talked blasters, mods, games, and troops. It was lovely. I can't wait to hang out with these troopers again, but it may be a while since we all live in different areas. Before I left, I got a certificate for being an approved member and another Garrison patch :D

Around 3, I drove back and unpacked. For dinner, I was invited by our church elder and his wife for dinner. They made spaghetti with fresh tossed salad and garlic bread. It was delicious :) We talked about work and birds and summer activities. Then we went in the backyard and made s'mores! It was such a nice evening by the fire. We were even visited by some catbirds :3 I learned a little bit about fires and cooking during the time of the French and Indian War and the local chipmunks, hehe. It was so kind of them to welcome me to their home and to share the evening together. I had a delightful time and the weather was perfect.

I'm glad to be back in PA again. I'm looking forward to more 501st trooping and more peaceful evenings together with my church family.