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Feature Stories

NEWS | June 3, 2021

Kuwait MWR holds first in-person tournaments following a year of COVID restrictions

By Spc. Elizabeth Hackabrth U.S. Army Central

Programs and events at Camp Arifjan are beginning to return to normalcy as more personnel on base receive the COVID vaccine. The Morale, Welfare and Recreation Community Center hosted a chess tournament and darts tournament for service members and civilians at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, on May 23, 2021, and May 26, 2021, respectively.

Service members and civilians said they were grateful for a chance to compete and meet new people.

“It’s refreshing to be able to come out and do group events again,” said Sgt. 1st Class Luis Fortuna, a logistics noncommissioned officer for U.S. Army Central.

“It’s important that stuff is opening up because it helps a lot with the loneliness that comes with deployment,” said Spc. Maximilian Huth, a mass communication specialist with U.S. Army Central Public Affairs. “Under COVID, it was extremely difficult to socialize the way we do now with everything opening up.”

The MWR plans to routinely host various competitions moving forward, including ping pong, poker, tailgate toss, and eight-ball.

“Now that the MWR has events every day, it’s great,” said Sgt. 1st Class Russell Kechely, a U.S. Army National Guard recruiting and retention career counselor at Camp Arifjan. “It helps pass the time. I look forward to every day. There is always something new, something different.”

A full schedule of events and competitions is planned to boost morale and improve connectedness on base.

“It’s really awesome that I can find a group of like-minded people who share the same interests,” said Huth. “It will make this deployment a lot more enjoyable now that COVID is being lifted.”