Update: Public health emergency extended at Air Force Academy

  • Published
  • By Ray Bowden
  • U.S. Air Force Academy Public Affairs

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- The 10th Air Base Wing commander has extended the public health emergency declaration at the Air Force Academy through Nov. 11, as the base continues to operate amid the nationwide COVID-19 pandemic. 

Col. Brian Hartless issued the original declaration March 23, giving public health personnel the authority to use any necessary means to identify, confirm and control the spread of the COVID-19 disease. 

The declaration instructs anyone working, residing or visiting the installation to follow public health guidance to mitigate risk and protect the health and safety of the workforce or face potential criminal charges. 

"This has been a challenging time for the Academy and our Colorado Springs community," Hartless said. "We've come a long way in these last five months and we know there are more challenges to come. Not adhering to public health measures not only endangers yourself and others, but it’s also a military readiness issue. Continue to practice social distancing in all venues including vehicles; wear masks; stay home if you are sick; and wash your hands often."

Hartless said a public health emergency declaration gives military commanders the authority to make adjustments to increase security and safety across their installations, including who can and cannot access the base. These adjustments do not necessarily reflect what guidelines state, county and city officials have applied for people in areas outside the Academy, he said. 

With the declaration extension, the base will remain closed to the public through Nov. 11. Only those with Defense Department identification will be allowed on the base. Hikers and bicyclists who do not live or work on base are not allowed on the installation.

Along with the public health declaration, Hartless authorized the Trusted Traveler Program to continue after being curtailed in April. Instead of a 100% check for DOD identification, this program allows drivers with DOD identification to sponsor passengers riding in their vehicles.

Many services at the Academy have reopened in the wake of the pandemic for cadets, active duty service members, staff and beneficiaries who possess the appropriate identification.

Army and Air Force Exchange Service
Burger King, Subway and Domino’s Pizza are open for dine-ins with limited capacity using statewide social distancing guidelines. Call Burger King at 719-472-1211, Subway in Arnold Hall at 719-472-1321 or in Fairchild Hall at 719-472-9664.

Academy Lanes Bowling Center
Bowling lanes are available by reservation only. Lunch is served via dine-in or for curbside pick-up. Call the Academy Lanes at 719-333-4709.

Aero Club
Reservations required. Call the Aero Club at 719-333-4542.

Airmen and Family Readiness Center
By appointment only. Call the AFRC at 719-333-3444.

Arts and Crafts Center
Accepting instructional class reservations for a maximum capacity of two students. Drop-offs and pick up are allowed and studio access is by appointment only. Call the center at 719-333-4538.

Auto Skills Shop
Car washes are open and personal-project stalls are available by reservation. Call the Auto Skills Shop at 719- 333-4759.

Civilian Personnel Office
By appointment only. Call the civilian Personnel Office at 719-333-4363.

Eisenhower Golf Course
Golf carts are available for rent and limited to one person in each cart unless the passenger is a family member. Tee times may be reserved online or via phone call. The tavern and snack bar are open. Call the Eisenhower Golf Course at 719-333-2606.

Equestrian Center
Open for the care of non-appropriated funds and boarder horses. The rental office is open during duty hours and trail rides are available by reservation only. The center is open to Remount Foundation equine therapy. Call the Equestrian Center at 719-333-4607.

Falcon Club
A limited menu for pickup and delivery only is available. All dining areas are closed but full service catering for official functions and private events is available. Rooms at the club can be reserved for military training sessions. Call the Falcon Club at 719-333-8189.

Farish Recreational Area
Open for weekend camping and by reservation only. Rental cabins are available on the weekends but are booked through Labor Day. Staff and patrons are required to wear facemasks when checking in and if they are not able to abide by social distancing measures. Common showers and restrooms are closed. Visit www.usafasupport.com/farish.html or call the Farish Recreational Area at 719-687-9098.

Fitness and Sports Center
Open to active duty service members who live and work at the Academy and dependents of active duty members, weekdays 9 a.m.–noon, and weekends 6 a.m.-7 p.m. Workouts are limited to cardio and weightlifting equipment. The pool is open 9 a.m.-6 p.m. but limited to six lanes. Basketball courts are reserved for prep school students only. The sauna, showers and classrooms are closed. Call the Fitness and Sports Center at 719-333-4522/3531.

Military Personnel Flight
By appointment only. Call the Military Personnel Flight at 719- 333-8766.

Outdoor Recreation Office
Hosting limited trips and tours by reservation only. The Informational Tickets and Travel Office and Outdoor Rec retail store are open by appointment to a limited capacity. Equipment rentals and reservations must be made online or by phone. Call the Outdoor Recreation Office at 719-333-4753.

Peregrine Pines Family Camp
All recreational vehicles and campsite slots are available by reservation. Public showers and restrooms are now open. Call Peregrine Family Camp at 719-333-4980.

Polaris Perk
Now open. Call Polaris Perk at 719-333-7930.

Visit www.usafasupport.com for more information.