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Shades of Green at Disney World Now to Reopen in March 2004

Special to American Forces Press Service

ORLANDO, Fla., July 15, 2003 – The refurbished Armed Forces Recreation Center Shades of Green on Walt Disney World Resort won't open till March 1, 2004, instead of the originally planned Dec. 15, 2003, date.

Unexpected construction delays caused officials to move the date back 76 days, according to Peter F. Isaacs, chief operating officer at the U.S. Army Community and Family Support Center. The Army serves as the executive agent, operating AFRCs for DoD.

"When we were on schedule, we began accepting guest reservations in December of last year," said Isaacs. "We sincerely regret the inconvenience this causes our customers and want to give them as much advance notice as possible. We are in the process of notifying those who have reservations and offering them other options."

Shades of Green General Manager Jim McCrindle personally signed more than 2,200 letters to guests already booked at Shades of Green, informing them of the delay. "We're genuinely sorry for the delay, but it was unavoidable," he said.

Guests who already hold reservations are offered three options:

 

  • Keep the same vacation dates for 2004 at the same room rates guaranteed in 2003.

 

  • Keep their vacation dates for 2003 at a comparable Disney Resort at the same room rates plus the applicable state tax of 11 percent.

 

  • Cancel the existing reservation and receive a full refund.

The renovation and expansion project that began in April 2002 was driven by high demand that kept the original 288 rooms at or near 100 percent occupancy. The hotel is financially self-sufficient, and no taxpayer dollars are used in the operations or for the new construction. When it reopens, there will be 586 new or renovated rooms, 500 new covered parking spaces and 7,500 square feet for special events.

The current room rates of $66 for E-1 through E-5 will only go up $4 to $70. Other rates are computed on a sliding scale based on rank.

The Armed Forces Recreation Center is open to DoD ID-card holders in all branches of military service: active duty and reserve components, DoD civilians, both military and civilian DoD retirees, and their families.

"The information about our new opening date and reservations is on our web site," said McCrindle, adding, "The best way to make a reservation is to use the Web site as the phones tend to be overloaded."

For more information, access www.shadesofgreen.org or call toll free 1-888-593- 2242.

(Based on a Community and Family Support Center news release.)

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