Service members now have a dedicated space to call their own.
The Warrior Zone, located in the Swabian Special Events Center on Patch Barracks,was designed with gamers and movie enthusiasts in mind.
Garrison and tenant unit leaders joined a crowd of more than 100 people to introduce the new facility to the community March 8 during a grand opening hosted by U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart’s Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, and Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers.
“We have come a long way,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Anthony M. Bryant, USAG Stuttgart command sergeant major. “I remember when I was a young troop living in the barracks … all we had was a day room with a pool table.”
The Warrior Zone goes far beyond that.
The facility offers service members of all branches opportunities to surf the Internet, play interactive games, participate in video game tournaments, watch sports and movies, or simply unwind after work. “We want service members to get out of their houses and meet new people … it’s a good way to network and interact,” said Joel D’Agostino, a Family and MWR community recreation assistant.
The Warrior Zone features a movie room equipped with two flat screen televisions, arm chairs, sofas and rocker recliners for a relaxed home-theater atmosphere.
The facility offers a selection of movies, or patrons can bring their own favorites.
The gaming room boasts four stations that include video game consoles and monitors, and recliner chairs with built-in speakers to enhance the virtual experience.
The Warrior Zone’s computer room has six computers with commercial Internet access and webcams for people to connect with friends and family.
“It’s an outstanding location,” said Master Sgt. Rodolfo Fuentes from the Defense Information Systems Agency Europe. “Service members needed a place to just unwind.”
Initially, the Warrior Zone was scheduled to open in the Patch Food Court, however, due to space constraints, a new location had to be found. The closure of the Le Rose restaurant last September signaled an opportunity for the Warrior Zone’s future home.
“It’s been a long, hard road to get here,” said Steve Dunlap, the Warrior Zone and BOSS manager. “We only had seven months to convert this place from an old restaurant to what you see today.”
“This means a lot for single Soldiers like myself. I come here to relax, get on the computers and play video games on my time off,” said Sgt. Walter Ayala, assigned to U.S. European Command.
The force behind the Warrior Zone endeavor was teamwork.
According to Petty Officer 2nd Class Vincent Aquado, the Stuttgart Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers president, the idea for the layout of the Warrior Zone came from BOSS members.
Aquado added that beside BOSS and Family and MWR, the Stuttgart Outreach Kontakt Club also supported the development of the new facility with hundreds of volunteer hours.
BOSS is a Family and MWR program which serves as the voice of the single service member. In Stuttgart, membership is open to all branches of service.
The BOSS program will now be located in the Warrior Zone and will meet there on the second and last Tuesday of each month.
The Warrior Zone is open Wednesday and Thursday from 4-9 p.m., Friday from 4-10 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 2-9 p.m. The Warrior Zone is open to all service members, single or married, and their guests age 18 and older.
For more information on the Warrior Zone, visit www.stuttgartmwr.com.