USS Mount Whitney, CNE band sailors paint and play at Varna orphanage
VARNA, Bulgaria — Sailors from USS Mount Whitney (LCC/JCC 20) and Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe (CNE) Band combined efforts for a community relations (COMREL) project at the Little Friend House and Princess Hope Orphanage here Nov. 9.
Sailors painted playground equipment and put together two donated swing sets while the CNE Band's Saxophone Quartet played two 30 minute concerts for more than 50 children.
"The biggest hit with the kids was the chicken dance," said Musician 2nd Class Tony Carter. "They flooded the stage and went wild. They had a really good time with it and so did we." The music education teacher for Little Friend House Orphanage, Margazita Raykova, said the children at the orphanage love to sing at dance and that she and the other teachers are always on the look-out for chances like these.
"Even as we were leaving, the kids didn't want us to go and were yelling out, asking us when were coming back," said Carter. "I truly hope that could happen."
Mount Whitney, home ported in Gaeta, Italy, is on a regularly scheduled deployment to the Black Sea and is currently hosting the multinational Black Sea Partnership Cruise. The six-day, at-sea event is designed to strengthen ongoing partnerships and increase interoperability among Black Sea nations.