Just completed PIR last week and we would have found the following information helpful: perhaps it's somewhere that we missed, or our son isn't the best at communicating, but anyway, we wish we had known:
1. BE EARLY. When they say the gate opens at 6:30 am, know there will be a LONG LINE of cars! There are 3 lanes that need to "zipper" and nobody directing traffic at the lights leading up to the entry The public street is not governed by the Navy so the local police would have to do it. We were in the far right lane: big mistake. Those in the left lane just whizzed by and the folks in the middle were stuck going nowhere as well, and this was 3 lights back.
We sat with the car (part of the time in park through 6 green lights) as the time ticked by (from 6:45 to about 7:45 getting nowhere) . I finally got out and walked in to save a seat for my husband and daughter. She went back out to trade driving with my husband, then parked the car and made it in at 9:00 am, just in the nick of time. Had they not delayed graduation she would have missed it.
2. Save the poor guy standing out in the cold having to repeat this a million time and HAVE YOUR GATE PASS VISIBLE IN YOUR WINDOW. It's cold out there and these guys would like to keep everyone moving smoothly.
3. When you get into the building, bleachers are on your right. Look to the left for portable signs that have your recruit's division number on them. That's the section they'll be in. You won't necessarily be able to see much of the actual ceremony if you're seated at the ends, but they do have big screens up so you can see those.
4. Do not stand up in the bleachers or climb over them: it's absolutely forbidden and you'll be scolded (firmly but kindly.) Walk to the end of the row and use the stairs.
And a side note... it's a long morning with an early start and no quick exit to the bathroom once the ceremony starts. Consider carefully if you want to bring small children. If you do, bring plenty to keep them occupied etc. It's a cool ceremony, but not very interesting for little ones who had to get up at the crack of dawn!
Enjoy and congratulations to the new sailors!
I had the worst dream!! Pretty much a NIGHTMARE that we were sooo late for PIR!!!
If we arrive by shuttle, how far of a walk is it from the gate to the building where graduation is held? I am bringing my mom and don't want her to have to walk too far. She has a bad back.
Thank you for sharing this, it was very helpful for us new moms. Can you shed any light on if there is a dress code. I'd appreciate it.
NavyNukMom, see PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend for info on that and more.
Thank you! Great information to have!
PIR Comments - 12/31/15
We booked our hotel reservations about mid Nov or just before Thanksgiving -- because there were so many of us we drove up (about 8 hrs) Stayed at the Navy Lodge. We had planned to drive on base until reading this post. We ended up opting for the shuttle from the Lodge over to PIR - GREAT decision!!! We arrived late on the night before PIR - too late for Sarges Meet and Greet (which we had really been looking forward to) So our shuttle choices were limited - took a 8:00 shuttle over, and honestly sitting was a bit full at that time. We sat in the balcony just off to the side of sons division. Was able to see well, maybe even better than if we were on the floor. Was nice to see the flags and marching from above. The walk in wasn't far, security wasn't a problem was very easy!!! Shuttle drive was very informative and helpful. Infact - we met and spoke to no one that wasn't just as nice as they could possibly be, at the lodge, on base .... the only down side I can comment on was when we were ready to go back to the lodge - the first van was full, had to wait 10 or 15 mins for him to come back. Since we had our sailor and spent the time visiting with him -- felt like it wasn't a problem
Side note: We did go up for Christmas on the adopt a sailor program - Stayed at Candlewood Suites which was also very nice, easy drive - great staff. But did take us almost 30 mins to get on base and where we needed to be that day.
What if we are a family of 4 and only 3 guest are permitted is there a way for the other family member to come
Morgansmom, those not on the Access List should watch the Livestream (at http://www.livestream.com/usnavyrtc or http://navylive.dodlive.mil/ ) at the hotel. The Chapel MAY be available, but not always. See the info on that in See PIR Day and Liberty during PIR Weekend.
Also, the answer does not change just because you ask it again. See http://www.bootcamp.navy.mil/upcoming_grads.html.
Check your My Page.