Fun and games from MWR

Fun and games from MWR

Beth Reece

WHEN trends change, Morale, Welfare and Recreation delivers the “new and improved” to its military market. And when MWR managers want to build business, they look to the MWR’s Events Division for promotional packages that will draw customers.

“We look at social trends and the Army’s changing population to create cutting-edge promotions that appeal

Soldiers and their families,” said Coleen Amstein, director of the Events Division for the Community and Family Support Center–Business Programs.

Bowling, golf and club managers throughout the Army are taking advantage of promotional packages funded by the Department of the Army this year. Events range from the Lucky Bucket Sweepstakes, which is back for the second year by popular demand, to Nickelodeon-themed birthday parties.

Promotion packages include all point-of-sale materials and a how-to manual that steers managers from the beginning to end of each event. Even the prizes are included.

“Planning a promotion includes researching ideas, coordination, design work, selecting prizes and procuring all the materials,” Amstein said. “It’s very labor intensive, and that makes these centrally-packaged promotions affordable for the installation. There’s really no cost other than the implementation and a minimal amount of labor.”

Money made goes back into MWR programs at the installations where it’s earned. This year’s events include:


Army Bowling Centers will offer Nickelodeon-style birthday parties for children. The marketing package includes Nickelodeon-themed party goods and favors, and a guide to hosting the parties.

Adult parties are a new addition, and are offered by more than 130 bowling centers, club facilities and golf courses. Each facility has a party kit with party ideas, decorating tips and resources for supplies and decorations. Party themes range from birthdays and retirement to holidays and such special events as Academy Awards.


Popular demand brings back the Lucky Bucket Sweepstakes at participating golf courses May through June. Customers have two ways to win. Golf managers will drop one “lucky” ball in the range-ball machine each week. Golfers who get the “lucky” ball win such instant prizes as sunglasses and stereo systems.

Customers will also receive entry forms with every purchase for a national drawing to take place at the end of the promotion. Each golf course will give a mountain bike as the grand prize. Three to six “Great Golf Escape” packages will be awarded as the national prize.



Bowling Bucks debuts this year at 79 bowling centers. For every $5 purchase, customers will receive a bowling buck good toward the purchase of one of three plush toys. Customers may also save their bucks for an end-of-promotion party, when extra prizes will be auctioned off. Centers will run the promotion two consecutive months between April and August. Prizes will include Harley Davidson denim shirts, bowling balls and free bowling.

Bowling centers will also present the Leading Edge Bowling Club. Members pay a weekly fee good for two games, rental shoes and a portion of a custom Viz-A-Ball that the member gets to keep after 17 games. The promotion takes place in spring and summer with the theme of “Shrek 2.”



Almost 150 food and beverage facilities will hold a scratch-card promotion centering on NASCAR April through June. Each facility will have such instant prizes as souvenir cups and caps. Four grand-prize trips will be awarded–two to the Brickyard 400 Race and two to the Richard Petty Driving School.


COPYRIGHT 2004 Soldiers Magazine

COPYRIGHT 2004 Gale Group