The Briefing Room

WWII Weekend Jefferson barracks After Action Report

April 26th, 2009

April 24-26 WWII Weekend 09 at Jefferson Barracks. The event started Friday morning at 0900 when unexpectedly two school buses full of kids started the school educational tours. Boy scout groups, home schoolers, and regular schools alike all came in droves until about 1400.  Throughout the day reenactors came in to register and set up camp.  Dinner was served to reenactors at 1800 with spaghetti with meat sauce. Nobody walked away still hungry.  Park visitors came by and watched as people set up camp and displays anxious to see what the rest of the weekend had in store for them. After dinner The unit COs briefing took place at the Ranger camp. Safety issues and battle plans were discussed. at night the park was filled with the sounds of people laughing, singing, and having a good time with their friends by the camp fires. These camp fires were visible throughout camp square. Saturday morning at 0800 the Officer’s briefing took place for units that arrived during the night.   Followed by the raising of the flag accompanied by reveille.  Afterward was the safety and authenticity briefing of all reenactors where Cpl Owens had an embarrassing moment with a dud blank. The Germans moved out to the battlefield first, followed by allied units in the convoy. There we met a huge crowd of spectators and the battle  started with explosions and a hail of gunfire.  Approximately 350 reenactors put on a show with vehicles to a record audience. A parks employee stated that he had never seen this many people at this event.  Both battles Saturday had record crowds and before and after each battle those crowds moved to the camps. An estimated 12,000 spectators attended this event, which broke last year’s record. Saturday night was the dance sponsored by The Friends of Jefferson Barracks. The dance was sold out and everyone had a good time. Sunday morning there was a memorial service at the monument of the Battle of the Bulge. Attending were allied reenactors and members of The Gateway Chapter of the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge.  Sunday’s battle at noon was an intense fight, with an even more intense brush fire that started as a result of the pyrotechnics. With dry grass and heavy winds, the fire was a challenge to put out, but it was extinguished before the fire department arrived.  No reenactors required medical attention, but a few were singed in the fight. On a personal note. I would like to deeply thank all of the reenactors that helped douse the blaze.  On top of eighty degree weather, a hot sun beating down, wearing wool, and already partially exhausted by the battle. they still managed to put out the fire under extremely hot circumstances. THEN, continued the battle for the delight of the audience. From the bottom of my heart I thank you all. It shows your dedication to our hobby, and your steadfastness in the face of adversity. It makes me proud to be part of this experience with all of you. Thank you for your attendance and support of this event, both public and reenactors alike.

Sgt. Kevin Owens

D Co. 2nd Ranger Bn  (reenacted)

WWII Weekend Jefferson Barracks 2009

April 22nd, 2009

Just a few days away from our biggest event of the year, WWII Weekend at Jefferson Barracks, St.Louis county Park. Since my last post there have been many updates. So many that I have been too busy to update this blog, I apologize. I spoke with  the office at the park. Their phone, and mine as well, has been ringing off the hook. We will be having amazing weather this weekend, which will bring out people not only locally but people have been calling from all over the midwest wanting to see this event. It sounds like we will have a record numbers in attendance.

Last year we had 19 re-enacting units. This year we will have 30. Which means we will be having record numbers of re-enactors in attendance. We are anticipating numbers close to 400.  We will also be having a record number of vendors this year. From nationally known vendors such as At The Front, and Hessen Antique, All Era Militaria, and many more,  to independant vendors wanting to sell off their collections.  Calls and e-mails came flooding in after seeing articles in West Magazine, AAA Midwest Travel Treasures, Suburban Journals, The New York Times, and more. These articles can be found by clicking our MEDIA link.

I really hope you chose to spend your weekend with us. You will not regret it.

Thank you,

Cpl. Kevin Owens

President,  U.S. 2nd Ranger Battalion of St.Louis, Inc.

WWII Weekend

April 1st, 2009

With three short weeks to go WWII Weekend 2009 at Jefferson Barracks it is shaping up to be the largest WWII Weekend yet.

My phone has been ringing constantly with people wanting to see this event. We will also have more vendors than before, and more reenacting units than we had in years past. The Veterans of the Battle of the bulge will be there signing books telling their stories. Stop by the vendors and pick up a souvenir for the kids, watch the battle, and weapons demonstrations, and see the vehicles and hear the roars of their engines.

This event is total immersion into the 40s. Walking around the camp you will smell the canvas, hear the music from the era, and be able to watch how soldiers lived, and trained with living history displays. The sounds of jeeps driving around, and soldiers marching fills the air. You will feel like you are right there in 1944. I could describe it to you, but you really have no idea until you see it for yourself. Come witness this 30 plus year tradition and see history come alive at Jefferson Barracks April 25th and 26th.

Cpl. Kevin Owens
“D” Co. 2nd Ranger Bn (reenacted)
U.S. 2nd Ranger Infantry Battalion of St.Louis, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization

Hello Rangers!

January 1st, 2009

Welcome to our new website!

In addition to a new look and feel we also have a lot of new pages and features that we hope you enjoy.

Use the main navigation above to explore the new site and if you get lost - or are looking for something specific - try our Site Map, which is located under the HOME button on the main navigation.

Some of our new features include:

  • An Event Calendar - send your events to
  • WWII Glossary - the look is still being customized but it is fully functional and open for submissions - this is where our WWII Word of the Day comes from.
  • Photo Galleries - categories, photo titles, photo descriptions, photo ranking, favorites, and user submissions - if you’re a regular photo contributor contact to request a login.
  • An online enlistment form to make enlistment easier on new recruits.
  • A Blog called The Briefing Room - to keep up with our latest news, events, and anything else that we think you should know about.
  • Online Chat so you can talk with other rangers and the public in real time.
  • Online Newsletter Signup (on the home page).

Upcoming features include:

  • Online Event Registration - pre-register for events to save time upon arrival.
  • Newsletter Archive - read all of our past newsletters.
  • Downloads - including: WWII posters for all sides, ration containers, songs, and more.
  • Video Archive - give your videos to Kevin Owens to post in the online video archive.
  • Discussion Forums - discuss any and everything.
  • Classifieds - post everything you want to sell, WWII period or not.
  • Guestbook - share your thoughts about us with others.

We hope you enjoy our new site and we are always open to your comments - positive or negative - so please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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