“Lights out in all berthing compartments. Maintain silence about the decks. The smoking lamp is out in all berthing compartments.” – 1MC announcement at 10 p.m. each night on naval ships at sea

After a 22-month COVID hiatus, the sounds of laughing kids once again wafted through the berthing compartments on the USS Midway Museum when the ship’s new educational Overnight Adventure program was successfully relaunched in January.

“We’re excited to have them back on board for our exclusive adventure.”

“In the first three months of 2022, we’ve hosted nearly 1,400 scouts, JROTC cadets, students, teachers and parents from all over California, Arizona and Nevada,” said Chase Odell, Midway’s youth and leadership programs manager. “Many are returning guests who had to cancel their trips in 2020 due to the pandemic.” 

Youths don colorful vests to learn about the roles of the flight deck crew during a recent sleepover.

The new program starts later to allow participants ample time to arrive and more hands-on activities have been added so that they can experience the life and duties of sailors who served on board aircraft carriers.

“Your team and program really brings the naval service and history to life for our students,” said a high school teacher from Nevada.

Much of the credit for the triumphant relaunch of the museum’s overnight program goes to Rachel Cremering, Midway’s new youth programs overnight coordinator.

“Since coming aboard six months ago, Rachel has done an amazing job building and training our overnight team,” said Chase. “She works tirelessly to ensure that every overnight program is a success.”

Another enhancement to the overnight program is that breakfast is now served in the museum’s new Café 41 where participants enjoy a view of San Diego city skyline from the fantail and aircraft elevator 3 as the sun comes up.

“We’re excited to have them back on board for our exclusive adventure,” said Chase. “We have received great reviews so far.”

“I want to thank all the volunteers that keep this history alive,” said a grandfather and Navy veteran from California who recently participated in the overnight program with his family. “It was great to share this with my family.”

Currently, all overnight dates through July are sold out, and the second half of the year is filling up fast.

“Youth groups and families are getting out and wanting exciting experiences,” said Chase. “We feel honored they have chosen to come to Midway for their overnight adventure.”

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