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FWB hotel hosts beach ball radar
The first hotel that also hosts an active Air Force Radar Receiver has been open for a month now, and things seem to be going well for everyone.
The Fort Walton Beach Holiday Inn Resort opened last month on Eglin Air Force Base property on Okaloosa Island.
The military couldn't make good use of the land for training or test missions without building a tower to raise equipment above the surrounding hotels and other businesses.
The beach ball on the roof masks a radar dome.
It's high enough that it extends the base's range.
Chris Nixon, Director of Range Support Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base: "And what that does, that gives us better quality data and allows us to have missions without data dropouts, and that's huge."
Wesley Mason, Contractor: "When they decided to paint it like a beach ball they wanted a landmark and it's turned out to be that pretty well."
As part of the deal, the hotel also provides the base with a secure conference room for classified meetings.