Friday, April 10, 2009

Fort Ord Dunes State Park, Monterey Bay, CA

The Ft Ord Dunes State Park is finally open. It occupies in part the site of the now demolished Stillwell Hall, well remembered by vets from WWII to Vietnam as the enlisted men's rec facility at Ft Ord. It succumbed to the erosion of the dunes a few years ago. The park had to go through a Super Fund environmental cleanup, mostly due to lead from the firing ranges that occupied the shore side of the dunes.

Stillwell Hall was the creation of "Vinegar Joe" Stillwell who built this unique and superb rec facility for enlisted men. It was superior to most any officer's club at the time. It says a lot about "Vinegar Joe" and how he felt about the common soldier.

If you would like to see what Stillwell Hall looked like, and it's worth a look, follow this link

General Joe Stillwell is a story unto himself and for those so inclined, there is a wealth of information on line about him. Google ""Vinegar Joe Stillwell" and take a look at the remarkable figure from American history.

I was glad to finally have access to the dunes without having to hike long distances through ankle deep sand up steep dunes.

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