News: 316th ESC continues dining out tradition
Story by Spc. Dalton Smith
PITTSBURGH – Laughter, taunting and spoons slamming on tables could be heard throughout the banquet hall of a local hotel during the 316th Expeditionary Sustainment Command Mission Support Element’s dining out in Coraopolis, Pa., Dec. 15.
Soldiers of the 316th ESC MSE assembled for the traditional dining out ceremony before the holidays to promote camaraderie and teach junior soldiers how to continue on with these customs.
“These events are still very necessary,” said Warrant Officer Will Glass, of Pittsburgh. “Everyone loosens up and humor is always present.”
During a speech, Col. Stephen Falcone, of Hudson, Mass., rear operations commander of the 316th ESC, spoke about each step a dining out should perform. Where camaraderie is always present, music is always played and certain Soldiers act out specific roles as if the night was a play.
Glass said the one thing different with this dining out, when compared to a typical one, was that a grog bowl was present. Typically, a grog bowl is present only in a dining in. A grog bowl is a punch filled with a mixture of both disgusting and delightful concoctions that are poured into a bowl for violators of etiquette. Once the grog mixture is complete, certain brave and unfortunate soldiers are challenged to drink from it.
Dining outs normally don’t have grog bowls because service members invite family or loved ones as guests for the event.
The challenges to drink from the grog bowl were tamed because of this, said Glass.
During the night, random soldiers would stand up and shout out for another guest to drink from the bowl. These challenges came out in response to minor violations, such as a Soldier not dressed to regulation or earlier personal and humorous grudges that needed to be settled.
A local disk jockey, Kevin Davidson, of Monaca, Pa., volunteered his DJ services for free as a show of support for the military. He said this was his first military event, and enjoyed it so much that he would consider doing it again.