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Gritty, on-post entertainment

Blood-pumping fun for single servicemembers at JBLM

A skateboarder at the JBLM Skate Plaza takes on the “Rainier Gap.” The JBLM Skate Plaza is open seven days a week, offering patrons a chance to enjoy heart-racing activities on post. Photo courtesy of JBLM Family & Morale, Welfare & Recreation

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There's nothing like sleeping in on a Saturday morning, then rolling out of bed and letting the day take you where it may. It's a lifestyle most single people, particularly single servicemembers, take full advantage of at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, where on-base entertainment can keep anyone busy long before the weekend disappears.  

When it comes to outdoor entertainment, especially, single servicemembers have a plethora of adrenaline-filled options. The JBLM Skate Plaza, located in Freedom Park on JBLM Main and open from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. daily, is a great place to start an action-packed weekend. The skate plaza opened in 2012 and has 14,000 square feet of skate-able concrete. Professional skaters Joey Brezinski and Torey Pudwill have even visited the plaza and spent several hours skating its boxes, pipes, rails and ramps with fellow skateboarders and onlookers.

Another place to keep your blood pumping while enjoying a hassle-free afternoon is to spend time at JBLM's Rifle & Pistol and Trap & Skeet (Shotgun) Ranges. For a small usage fee, active-duty servicemembers, retirees, DoD employees and family members and accompanied guests can all access the ranges to practice long and short-range marksmanship. JBLM's rifle and pistol range, Range 15, is open year-round and offers shooters 10- and 20-yard berms for pistol firers, use of action targets starting at 100 yards and a range shop where patrons can find ammunition, water and snacks. The Trap & Skeet Range (Shotgun Shooting Complex) is comprised of skeet fields, trap fields with a duck tower, and monthly skeet and sporting clay competitions.

If you want to put your marksmanship skills to the test after hitting the range, head to Paintball Inc. on JBLM North, where you can spend hours diving through mock village buildings, attacking hilltop bunkers, or crawling through underbrush to achieve your paintball objective. Paintball Inc. has two main paintball fields: a "speedball" field where players move through an inflated field of obstacles, and a grittier "recreation/woodsball" field that allows players to move across mud and rock-covered hillside and woods. If you don't have your own gear, don't worry, because gear is available to rent on-site along with paintballs for purchase.

For a more relaxed experience while flying solo, try your hand at either of JBLM's bowling alleys, Bowl Arena Lanes and Sounders Lanes Family Fun Center. Bowl Arena Lanes, which is located on JBLM Main, is open seven days a week and offers Xtreme Bowling on Saturday nights, adult bowling leagues each fall and access to 10-Pin Bar, a relaxed bar and lounge for patrons 21 and older. Sounders Lanes Family Fun Center is a smaller bowling center at McChord Field, but it packs just as much of a punch with its Laser Maze, photo booth and Saturday night cosmic bowling. Both bowling alleys are equipped with a Strike Zone Snack Bar or Café to satisfy your late-night cravings.

Speaking of late nights, Samuel Adams Brewhouse, one of JBLM's newest additions, is the perfect place to unwind after a long, action-packed day on post. The venue has 16 beers on-tap, plays major on-screen sporting events and UFC Pay-Per-Views, hosts trivia nights and has a full dinner menu for patrons. The brewhouse also holds frequent special events, including "Yappy Hour" nights in which patrons are encouraged to bring their dogs to relax on the patio or compete in dog-oriented games for prizes. There is also Bingo, BUNCO Night and themed celebrations at the brewhouse throughout the year.

It's almost a guarantee that the more you look for on-post entertainment at JBLM, the more inundated you'll be with information about sports, special events, outdoor activities and venues catering to single servicemembers and the untethered lifestyle. To ferret out information on even more activities of the sort, visit JBLM's Family and Morale, Welfare & Recreation (MWR) website.

JBLM MWR, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday-Friday; closed Saturday and Sunday, 2013B N. 3rd & Pendleton, Room 117, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, 253.967.5200,

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