[ Triad Online Home ]                                                                                           Sept. 24, 2004

Morale, Welfare and Recreation profits fund McCoy quality-of-life programs 

      Revenues generated by the Fort McCoy Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) program support a number of activities and events that improve the quality of life for Soldiers, and consequently, for other members of the Fort McCoy community, said Mike Lupacchino.

McCoy's personnel serve customers during lunch. (Photo by Rob Schuette)
McCoy's personnel serve customers during lunch. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

      Lupacchino, the director of Community Activities (DCA), said the MWR program has several sources that generate most of the net profits before depreciation. For the current fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30, the MWR program is expected to show a net profit of about $900,000 before depreciation, he said. All of the profits are put back into the program to improve facilities, etc.

      "In many activities, our goal is to provide the service and break even if we can," he said. "We're trying to offer a variety of programs and events to meet the needs of the community."

      Some of the activities/events included in this category are the Child and Youth Services programs, Arts and Crafts, Recreation Center, Auto Crafts, the Rumpel Fitness Center and the MWR Car Wash, among others, he said.

A record crowd attends the Army Concert Tour event at Fort McCoy. (Photo by Sheila Cullen)
A record crowd attends the Army Concert Tour event at Fort McCoy . (Photo by Sheila Cullen)

      The top MWR money generator at Fort McCoy is the club, McCoy's, in building 1571. McCoy's generates about 50 percent of the Fort McCoy MWR net profits before depreciation, Lupacchino said. The next most profitable source is the Outdoor Recreation Program, which includes the Pine View and Whitetail Ridge Recreation Areas. Pine View and White Tail generate about 25 percent of the MWR net profits before depreciation, he said.

      The Army Concert Tour is the third highest profit generator at 10 percent. The eighth Army Concert Tour performance at Fort McCoy in July (the first was in 1997) attracted a sold-out crowd of almost 9,000 people.

      "This is important to us because it's a one-day event, albeit one with a lot of planning, that we can make a good profit from," Lupacchino said. "Our future goal is to keep offering the concerts and continually upgrade the acts we have coming here."

      Lupacchino said another important MWR revenue stream is Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) dividends. This is not an MWR program, but some of the proceeds come back to the installation and MWR. The AAFES dividends are generated by profits on sales of AAFES merchandise, such as at the Post Exchange Mini Mall.

The Tactics Paintball Course is operational near Whitetail Ridge Recreation Area. (Photo by Rob Schuette)
The Tactics Paintball Course is operational near Whitetail Ridge Recreation Area. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

      For the past few years, the MWR profits have predominantly gone to McCoy's to improve its offerings, Lupacchino said. That included the McCoy's Courtyard addition to provide an outdoor venue.

      "We've invested a lot of money in the club, and now we believe we have it where it needs to be for the next four to five years," he said.

      During this year, the profits will be aimed at improving the Car Wash and Pine View. Lupacchino said the upgrades at Pine View will continue over several years.

      Improvements at the car wash will include an automatic touchless bay to go along with the self-service bay(s), he said.

      The next big project is to improve Pine View by installing water and sewer and other amenities on the east side of Squaw Lake to provide the infrastructure to add up to 40 cabins, he said. Currently, the installation has four cabins.

      "We now predominately run a weekend camping operation except for the cabins," Lupacchino said. "Their occupancy rate is in the 90 percent range. We're looking at making Pine View a destination location. And we're looking at adding things that would encourage campers to stay longer than a weekend and to stay here all year-round."

      The new Tactics Paintball Course recently completed at Whitetail Ridge also has the potential to bring in additional MWR revenues. Lupacchino said the sport is one of the top-rated extreme-action adventure sports

      "These amenities will help sell our current campground," he said. "They're all money-generating activities."

      Lupacchino said increased profits at Pine View and Whitetail would help reduce the reliance on McCoy's to generate MWR profits.

      "We feel if we provide a quality product and customer service, the goal of generating revenue will take care of itself," he added.

      For more information about MWR events or services, call the MWR Events Line at (877) 864-4969 or visit the MWR Web site at http://www.mcccoymwr.com.

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