With summer winding down and to celebrate National Relaxation day (yes, that’s a thing), my wife, friends, and some academic contemporaries decided to enjoy a sunset picnic at the Battleship Missouri Memorial at Pearl Harbor. Embarrassingly, this would be my first time visiting the Mighty Mo. I was excited.
After parking our cars, a bus shuttled us from the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center to what is known as Pier Foxtrot-5 on Ford Island, where the Mighty Mo rests. We soon saw the very large and formidable USS Missouri directly in front of us. We passed an aisle of American flags as we walked toward the Missouri. There were military personnel and vehicles on the pier for photo-ops. We shamelessly took advantage of this.
After claiming our picnic spot, we quickly took advantage of the free tour of the Missouri. I have to admit, I was impressed. As I climbed up the stairs leading to the 1st floor of the ship, the somber USS Arizona memorial came into view, with the Koolau mountains draping its background.
We had a great time. The Steel Beach Picnic was definitely a unique experience. How often do you get to watch the sunset from the Mighty Mo while Hawaii’s Naval Band, the Tropic Knights, play Bobby Darin classics? Not too often.
The Battleship Missouri Memorial is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. during summer (8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. the rest of the year). General admission, which includes choice of an optional tour, is $25 per adult and $13 per child (4-12). Military, kama‘aina (local resident) and school group pricing is available. For information or reservations, call (toll-free) 1-877-644-4896 or visit USSMissouri.org.