JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas —
An annual event that brings holiday cheer to Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph while supporting a special group of families is set for next week.
The seventh annual Holiday Tour of Homes, which benefits the Airman and Family Readiness Center's Warrior Family Fund, will be held from noon-3 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. Tuesday.
"There will be 10 different historic homes at Randolph on display," Kristine Goodfellow, event spokeswoman, said. "People who take the tour will be able to see them decorated to the hilt for the holidays."
Sponsored by the Randolph Community Spouses and the 12th Flying Training Wing Spouses, the tour, which is open to any Department of Defense ID card holder, benefits three programs that are part of the Warrior Family Fund - Key Spouse, Hearts Apart and Heart Link, Goodfellow said.
Two of the programs support spouses and families experiencing separation due to deployment, remote assignment or extended TDY.
Key Spouses are trained volunteers who provide families of deployed service members with information from their squadron's leadership about events, programs and other available resources, while Hearts Apart gives families of deployed members a social setting, typically a dinner or other activity, that allows them to bond and build friendships. Heart Link orients spouses new to Randolph to the installation's services and programs and gives them a chance to meet new people.
"The purpose of the Warrior Family Fund is to help fund programs that support families of deployed Airmen," Goodfellow said. "It's particularly hard to be without your spouse at Christmas, so we want to help these programs continue to support the families."
Tickets payable by check are available 8 a.m.-5 p.m. through Monday at the Hunt Housing Office, Bldg. 133, and tickets payable by check or cash can be obtained 9 a.m.-5 p.m. through Monday at Randolph's Information, Tickets and Tours. On the day of the event, tickets are available at the Parr Club deck. Suggested "early bird" donations are $15, while suggested donations on the day of the tour are $20.
Participants will receive a wristband and a map that shows a recommended path to tour the homes. Cookies, cocoa and cider will be served on the Parr Club deck during the tour.
Donations have risen steadily in the last three years, from $600 in 2009 to $1,400 in 2010 and $1,675 in 2011, Goodfellow said.
"We're pleased with the support we've received," she said.
Goodfellow said the programs supported by the tour are important to the families of their deployed loved ones because they show the support of the Randolph community and bring them together with people who are experiencing the same emotions and facing the same challenges.
"It's much harder when you're all alone," she said. "We don't want them to be isolated."
For more information, call Goodfellow at 314-6251 or Cindy Gifford at 334-0304.