The main attraction at The Lake of The Ozarks, of course, is the Lake itself. We spend so much time swimming, fishing, skiing, and just enjoying the wind in our hair as we skim across the water, that most of the time we simply forget to look up. Then there are those times when you have to look up, when you hear a thunderbolt on a perfectly clear day. Not a literal thunderbolt, but an A-10 Thunderbolt II, nicknamed Warthogs. The A-10’s that we see flying overhead in the “Land Of The Magic Dragon” are part of the 442d Fighter Wing based at Whiteman Air Force Base. Whiteman Air Force Base is 65 miles southeast of Kansas City, just off US Highway 50 near Knob Noster. During missions the Warthog’s objective is to provide close air support by attacking tanks, armored vehicles, and other ground targets. Seeing them fly overhead you can’t help but feel their power with a surge of patriotism and pride.
Many veterans, retired military, and former service members call The Lake of The Ozarks home or their home away from home. The proximity to services at both Whiteman Air Force Base and Fort Leonard Wood make this area a natural choice for retired military members.
Whiteman Air Force Base provides a Commissary and a Base Exchange. Shoppers must show appropriate ID cards when making purchases at both facilities. The Commissary is a modern supermarket that offers a complete line of meat, produce, grocery, bakery, and deli items. The Commissary is open 6 days a week. The Base Exchange Main Store is located next to the Commissary and is open 7 days a week. The Base Exchange Main Store also offers Anthony’s Pizza, Frank’s Franks, Burger King, Robin Hood Deli, a coffee shop, flower, barber and beauty shops, a laundry/dry cleaner and a cellular phone retailer.
Fort Leonard Wood is located just off Interstate 44 near the towns of Waynesville and Saint Robert. The Main Exchange Mall is open daily and has a food court and offers a variety of concessions including barber and beauty shop, shoe shine, flower shop, optical shop, among others. The Commissary is also open 7 days a week and offers a complete line of grocery products, including Rotisserie Chicken and Sushi. General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital has 450,000 square feet of clinic and ward space and offers a full range of medical services to active military personnel, military retirees and family members enrolled in TRICARE Prime. Non-prime patients are seen as space allows. The Army Morale, Welfare, & Recreation department operates Lake Of The Ozarks Recreation Area (LORA) in Linn Creek. LORA Welcomes Active Duty, Retired Military, Members of the National Guard and Reserves, DOD Employees with ID cards, Family Members and Fort Leonard Wood Contract Employees.