Cavalier SFS Spartan Café opens, brings community together

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. BreeAnn Sachs
  • 319th Reconnaissance Wing Public Affairs

At the end of a dirt road, after miles of farms and open land, a group of approximately 130 personnel tracks over half of all earth-orbiting objects and provides critical, real-time information to top decision makers within the Department of Defense and White House with the Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System (PARCS).

Due to the size of the base and the limited resources in the area, Cavalier has lacked a hot food option for permanent party and temporary duty personnel living and working at the base. Meals were either prepped prior to traveling to the base, in base housing or in dorm kitchens, but no restaurant or hot food option existed until the opening of the Spartan Café, May 31, 2023.

“It took us about seven years to get this open, and the last two years we were pushing really hard,” said U.S. Space Force Senior Master Sgt. Stephen Compton, senior enlisted leader for the 10th Space Warning Squadron. “A dining facility hasn’t been open for about 20 years and 2016 was the last time there was a hot food option available.”

The 10th SWS is a geographically separated unit of Space Delta 4, located at Buckley Space Force Station, Colorado.

Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, home to the 319th Reconnaissance Wing, augments the services and capabilities Cavalier’s limited manning cannot facilitate. Most notably, teams of 319th Security Forces Squadron defenders provide additional security for the base on a 4-day on, 4-day off rotation year-round.

Compton added the 319th SFS personnel on temporary duty at Cavalier are unable to leave base during their 4-day rotation. The opening of the Spartan Café offers these personnel an area to enjoy a hot meal and relax between their 12-hour shifts.

“Everybody’s really excited, we only have a few of what I would term local options,” said USSF Lt. Col. Travis Kennebeck, commander for the 10th SWS. “Having an option of hot food you don’t have to make yourself, whether you’re in the dormitory or in base housing, is great! Once we get into winter, I think it will really shine because travel here makes it difficult to get anywhere.”

Although the 10th SWS’s footprint is relatively small, their dining and entertainment options are limited and the northern tier winters are harsh, the resilient civilians and Guardians of Cavalier have cultivated a strong sense of comradery and community.

“It brings us a spot to just meet and be together; that’s the biggest part about this unit, the togetherness,” said USSF 2nd Lt. Gabriella Gerving, crew commander for the 10th SWS. “This will be the perfect opportunity for us to get food, be together and to stay warm.”

The Spartan Café is located in the Cavalier Community Center and is open every day for breakfast from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., and for lunch from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.