U.S. service members here started their July 4 morning in ordinary fashion: early-morning resistance training at the 24/7 gym, followed by breakfast and a few cups of coffee at the dining facility.
Many reported to work; multinational forces either deployed to or stationed near the base and other locations across the Black Sea region — including Novo Selo Training Area, Bulgaria — are preparing to test their readiness during U.S. Army Europe’s upcoming regional exercise Saber Guardian 17.
Following a rainy morning that cleared by early afternoon, the dining facility team served a special meal fit for an all-American cookout.
By the late afternoon, crowds of Soldiers began gathering around Camp Mihail Kogalniceanu’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation area. Groups sprawled on the grass lawn, others started ping-pong battles and tug-of-war games with garrison division leads and members of their units. The air smelled of handmade pizza, grilled hot dogs and the outdoors — the perfect ingredients for an Americana festival.
Danika Portz, a folk and rock musician based in Nashville, Tennessee, kicked off the first stop on her European tour with a concert inside the Romanian camp’s deployment-style theater around 8 p.m. She played radio hits, patriotic tunes and some singles from her newest and soon-to-be-released albums. Soldiers cheered and sang along while celebrating our Independence Day from one end of the base to the other….