A morning at the Solar Inn Dining Facility

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Levin Boland
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
The sun slowly peaks up on the horizon as Airmen from across the base are swiping blindly at their alarm clocks trying to stop the high pitched rings that fill their dark rooms.

At the same time, U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Everett Brown and other cooks are also hearing the high pitched rings and buzzing from stoves and cooking timers, signaling that breakfast is done cooking - they have been up for hours.

Steam fills the air inside the dining facility as the food specialists shuffle to put the finishing touches on breakfast before lines of yawning young men and women stretch along the food lines to fuel up before their day begins.

From the time they wake up to late in the day, thousands of Airmen are always thinking about when and what their next meal is going to be.

The Altus AFB Solar Inn Dining Facility consists of 30 workers that are constantly preparing to provide more than 2,500 meals a week for Airmen including breakfast, lunch, dinner and a midnight meal.

"We provide nearly 450 meals a day," said Staff Sgt. Everett Brown, 97th Force Support Squadron Dining Facility food service supervisor. "When Airmen wake up, or when they get let go for lunch, they want to eat dinner or even when shift workers are hungry in the middle of the night, were here with a hot meal ready for them."

The Airmen working at the facility provide various kinds of food to make sure there are always both tasty and healthy options to eat. The "Go for Green" program educates Airmen about eating healthier and categorizes food options served with green, yellow and red labels. Green indicates to eat often, yellow to eat occasionally, and red to eat rarely.

"Go for Green is to promote healthier food," said Brown. "We put green labels on food that stand out to the Airmen's eyes and so they can figure out quick, if they're in a rush, what foods are healthy."

Feedback is always welcomed at the DFAC as they are constantly trying to improve their services for the Airmen of Altus AFB. Feedback can be submitted through comment cards found in the entrance to the dining facility.

"We always ask for customer feedback," said Brown. "We feed thousands of people on this base and we are not able to accommodate for what everyone needs. If we can get enough people to give input, we can try and generalize what everyone wants."

The dining facility is an essential part of the Altus AFB mission, replenishing Airmen and keeping the mission going of forging combat mobility forces and deploying Airmen warriors.

"We're here to feed the Airmen" said Brown. "We want to make sure these Airmen are eating healthy and not just eating tons of junk food or anything like that. That's why food service is important to me. If you're not eating the right kind of food, you can become unhealthy and sick. Then how are you supposed to fight the war downrange?"