Twentynine Palms owes its birth to another Marine Corps base, Camp Pendleton. During the Korean War, the Marine Corps recognized the need to train in live fire action. Due to the limitations of Camp Pendleton, the Marines needed more space. What they found was Condor Field, a place that was once an Army base. It was redesigned as a place for Marines to train on live fire artillery. In the 1970’s the base grew to accommodate airfields. It was then that the name was changed to reflect the combined arms training that this base could and still does provide.
Today the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center houses numerous units including training other military units for warfare in the Middle East. Units included are 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Bn 7th Marines, 2nd Bn 7th Marines, 3rd Bn 7th Marines, 3rd Bn 4th Marines, 3rd Bn 11th Marines, 1st Tank Bn, 4th Tank Bn, 3rd Combat Engineering Bn, 3rd LAR Bn, Combat Logistics Bn 7, D Co 3rd AA Bn, MAWTS 1, MWSS 374, VMU 1, VMU 3 and 23rd Dental.
Marines also come here to train for oversea assignments under the ‘Mojave Viper’. Here support trains the Marines to perform under live fire, tanks, artillery and air support. The base also has a two acre area built to simulate a Middle Eastern town to train Marines, which also contains IED simulators.
Twentynine Palms is located in a desert, yet don’t let that damper your fun. The town offers plenty of fun activities to escape the day’s heat. There is plenty of shopping and sightseeing to do, cool off at many of the movie theatres.
One of the best things about Twentynine Palms is how close you will be to other major cities. Big Bear is just a quick drive away and offers skiing in the winter and lakeside activities in the summer.
Lake Havasu is a fun place year round and offers many cabins with military discounts. L.A., San Diego and Las Vegas are all about a two hour drive away, perfect for any weekend getaway.
Children living at Twentynine Palms will attend an elementary school located on base or off base.
The on base school, Condor Elementary School, is for enlisted families. Officer families’ children attend an off-base school, 29 Palms Elementary School. Junior High and High School are both located off base and in the local community.
The Robert E. Bush Naval Hospital services the bases. It covers in-patient and out-patient care as well as an emergency room. While it does not offer walk in service, you can call for same day appointment.
Housing at Twentynine Palms is run by a private company, Lincoln Military Housing. There are thirteen neighborhoods within the community. All offer pools, fitness rooms, maintenance and computer labs. Offered in two, three, four and five bedrooms; all homes include utilities, appliances, water and trash. As with most military housing, size and amount of bedrooms depend on rank and family size. Families can apply for housing as soon as they receive their PCS orders.