This site is for mothers of kids in the U.S. Navy and for Moms who have questions about Navy life for their kids.



Choose your Username.  For the privacy and safety of you and/or your sailor, NO LAST NAMES ARE ALLOWED, even if your last name differs from that of your sailor (please make sure your URL address does not include your last name either).  Also, please do not include your email address in your user name. Go to "Settings" above to set your Username.  While there, complete your Profile so you can post and share photos and videos of your Sailor and share stories with other moms!

Make sure to read our Community Guidelines and this Navy Operations Security (OPSEC) checklist - loose lips sink ships!

Join groups!  Browse for groups for your PIR date, your sailor's occupational specialty, "A" school, assigned ship, homeport city, your own city or state, and a myriad of other interests. Jump in and introduce yourself!  Start making friends that can last a lifetime.

Link to Navy Speak - Navy Terms & Acronyms: Navy Speak

All Hands Magazine's full length documentary "Making a Sailor": This video follows four recruits through Boot Camp in the spring of 2018 who were assigned to DIV 229, an integrated division, which had PIR on 05/25/2018. 

Boot Camp: Making a Sailor (Full Length Documentary - 2018)

Boot Camp: Behind the Scenes at RTC

...and visit - America's Navy and also Navy Live - The Official Blog of the Navy to learn more.

OPSEC - Navy Operations Security

Always keep Navy Operations Security in mind.  In the Navy, it's essential to remember that "loose lips sink ships."  OPSEC is everyone's responsibility. 

DON'T post critical information including future destinations or ports of call; future operations, exercises or missions; deployment or homecoming dates.  

DO be smart, use your head, always think OPSEC when using texts, email, phone, and social media, and watch this video: "Importance of Navy OPSEC."

Follow this link for OPSEC Guidelines:



**UPDATE 4/26/2022** Effective with the May 6, 2022 PIR 4 guests will be allowed.  Still must be fully vaccinated to attend.

**UPDATE as of 11/10/2022 PIR vaccination is no longer required.

**UPDATE 7/29/2021** You now must be fully vaccinated in order to attend PIR:

In light of observed changes and impact of the Coronavirus Delta Variant and out of an abundance of caution for our recruits, Sailors, staff, and guests, Recruit Training Command is restricting Pass-in-Review (recruit graduation) to ONLY fully immunized guests (14-days post final COVID vaccination dose).  


RTC Graduation

**UPDATE 8/25/2022 - MASK MANDATE IS LIFTED.  Vaccinations still required.

**UPDATE 11/10/22 PIR - Vaccinations no longer required.


Please note! Changes to this guide happened in October 2017. Tickets are now issued for all guests, and all guests must have a ticket to enter base. A separate parking pass is no longer needed to drive on to base for parking.

Please see changes to attending PIR in the PAGES column. The PAGES are located under the member icons on the right side.

Format Downloads:

Navy Speak

Click here to learn common Navy terms and acronyms!  (Hint:  When you can speak an entire sentence using only acronyms and one verb, you're truly a Navy mom.)

N4M Merchandise

Shirts, caps, mugs and more can be found at CafePress.

Please note: Profits generated in the production of this merchandise are not being awarded to the Navy or any of its suppliers. Any profit made is retained by CafePress. Para Familias

Visite esta página para explorar en su idioma las oportunidades de educación y carreras para sus hijos en el Navy.



PIR: What to Wear/Bring and Tips; PIR Reference Group/Forum links; GPS for RTC

(posted by FTLW)

PIR: What to Wear/Bring and Tips

Comment by JessicaB-Sailor Mom on May 27, 2011 at 5:59am

Be there as early as you can-before 7:30 am. Wear dressy casual, nice jeans are fine. If your PIR is in the winter months , you may want to wear flannel underwear. Wear comfortable shoes-you may have to climb bleachers and will be doing a lot of walking. Remember layers are the way to go. Gloves, hat, scarf. (For winter PIR) One thing I did was a few weeks before PIR, start a “PIR bag”, not necessarily one you’ll carry but just something to throw things into you don’t use daily or routinely that you might forget. Binoculars, camera, a baggie full of tissues, lint brush, tide pen, etc. Bring: photo ID, camera, binoculars, tissues, lint brush and tide pen (dress blues in the winter and dress whites in the summers), chapstick; hand lotion (cold weather dries you out) towel for your recuit to sit on while ya'll are out enjoying Chicago after PIR and for you to sit on while you watch PIR, Don't forget an umbrella just in case. Watch your make-up when you hug him/her--he/she has to be very careful with their uniform , a checkbook-for the photo packages (minimum pkg is ~ 140.00) and anything else you want to buy at PIR. R

REMEMBER: In public sailors must remain in military issue clothes...even to swim or workout. I've read to take a shuttle if possible (even if you rented a car)-it'll bypass the long line of cars at the gate and drop you off at Gate 8 on Ohio…you’ll still have a good 15-20 minute walk but it is flat and you’ll see new recruits marching with their division flags. I don’t think my feet touched the ground during the entire time. Sit at the top of the bleachers so you'll have something to lean against (besides some one’s knees) Try to sit across from where your sailor is and to the right that way you can see him/her better. There will be signs indicating where your Sailor’s division will be. Be careful about too much kissing and hugging You also need to leave their R arm free while on liberty in case they have to salute to an officer. No hand holding is allowed. They have to behave very differently from a civilian.

Bring their laptop and phone to hotel so they can catch up with their family and friends at home. If you rent a car (and I suggest that you do) Google addresses: RTC, the airport, hotel, Navy Pier, Gurnee Mall, restaurants. Etc. & write down the address. If you have a GPS, take it with you, if not rent one with the car. Take plenty of change for the tolls’. Liberty is ‘time off’ from the daily routine. Graduating Sailors will be granted liberty to go off-base during the day with their families. 1. Graduating Sailors may not smoke, drive, or consume alcoholic beverages while on liberty. 2. Graduating Sailors must stay within a 50-mile radius of RTC. 3. Graduating Sailors must remain in their complete uniform while on liberty. If they are engaging in physical activity or swimming, they must be in authorized Navy issued workout gear. 4. Liberty expires at 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 8 p.m. on Sunday (These times will vary). No overnight liberty is authorized. Due to security checks and transit time, please allow ample time for graduating Sailors to walk back to their assigned ship prior to the end of liberty. On time…is late. 5. Families may not enter the base after graduation and will need to meet graduating Sailors for liberty at the main RTC gate. 6. Graduating Sailors departing RTC for follow-up training the same day as graduation or in a duty status will be granted limited on-base liberty. 7. Graduating Sailors receive an in-depth liberty briefing prior to their graduation day. While you wait for your Sailor following graduation, MCPON Hall and eateries at RTC are available, or you may use your graduation parking pass to visit the USO, building 27 onboard Naval Station Great Lakes (Mainside). Parking is available outside Gate 1 adjacent to Mainside’s Visitors Center located on Sheridan Road. Walk through Gate 1 and proceed to the USO located on the corner of Farragut Avenue and Rodgers Street; escorts will assist. Snacks and drinks will be available on the second floor of the USO Ladies...the question of when they switch from white to blue dress uniforms and vice versa was brought up in another PIR group. I asked Hoppi (aka Angie) and she said: Great Lakes switches in April and Oct. BTW...She also said: Hawaii never switches to Blue and Iceland never switches to White. The music at PIR is VERY loud, drums, trumpets, etc. I would bring ear plugs for your little ones, it could hurt your baby (or worse, wake her up!). Bring quiet, soft toys for them to play with. They can run around until about 8:45, then they will need to stay put, but you can walk around still or stand near entrance to bathrooms. There are two very large motion picture screens so you'll still be able to see the graduation. (the hall is huge!). Oh..... and bring $5 bucks to buy you 4 yr old a dixie cup (Sailors hat, or Lid as the sailors call it). They are NOT ever allowed to try on or wear any part of a military uniform, so they sell these hats to help prevent that and kids love it (it's their size too). They sell them near the coffee stand inside the hall, but they go quickly, so find your seat, then go get a hat before they are gone!


PARKING - Family and friends will be directed to general parking in the Parking Garage that is adjacent to the Visitors Center. It has two levels and elevators. There is handicapped parking.

SHUTTLES - Most hotels in the area also have shuttle service to the graduation. Shuttles will drop off guests either at the gate or just inside the gate and then guests will walk about 100 yards to the visitors center.

PIR Reference Group links

Here is a link to the PIR info group:

Here is one to the PIR forum:


RTC GPS address 3355 Illinois Street Great Lakes, IL 60088 Gate 8 at Ohio & Buckley is where you enter to go to PIR

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