MINOT AIR FORCE BASE The Combined Community Complex, affectionately known as the Triple C, at Minot Air Force Base was originally constructed as a commissary in 1959. In the years that followed, the building housed a shoppette, furniture store, class six and video rental. After more than three decades, the commissary was later relocated to its current location in 1993.
In 2008 Army and Air Force Exchange Service completed construction on the Exchange and shoppette, leaving this facility vacant until 2013 when the Combined Community Center was created. The facility now houses the installation honor guard, first shirt pantry, Airman's Attic, linen exchange, thrift shop and Cinderella Boutique.
"Base leadership wanted to create a way to take all these private organizations scattered across the base and place them into one building," said Staff Sgt. Joshua Hull, noncommissioned officer in charge of the installation honor guard and Combined Community Complex building manager.
Hull explained that the Airman's Attic and thrift shop are located in the facility and are open to all ranks. Regardless of rank, whether a chief or lieutenant, they can get whatever is available at the facility.
The Airman's Attic and thrift shop provide a variety of items from donations dropped off by the base population, with a 24-hour drop-off location available behind the frosted glass at the main entrance.
"I think the Triple C is a hidden gem on Minot AFB," he said. "I think we need to bring awareness to everybody that we are here for them. We're here to serve you."
The Cinderella Boutique, also within the Triple C and run by the enlisted spouses club, offers members across base an opportunity to save money and get a lightly used or new dress and accessories for almost any occasion for free.
"If you can get on base they'll provide you a dress to wear for the Air Force ball, International Military Ball, prom or whatever event you have coming up, free of charge," Hull said. "They only ask you return the dress with a dry cleaning ticket."
Units and private organizations can also reserve the main foyer for holiday parties, baby showers, meetings, boy or girl scout parties and private organization officer meetings, Hull said. Anything someone would want to use a large space for can be used here.
"Moving the Honor Guard, linen exchange, thrift store, Airmen's Attic, Cinderella Boutique and food pantry into this facility has paved the way for demolition of four other buildings on base, helping Minot AFB reduce operating and maintenance expenses," said Renetta Pearson, 5th Civil Engineer Squadron deputy base civil engineer.
"We are saving $65,000 a year by demolishing those buildings," Hull added. "That was a huge savings and an incentive to combine everything into the Triple C."
Agencies at the Combined Community Complex are always in need of more volunteers.
"The Combined Community Complex, a one-stop shop where you can come in here and stop at the Airman's Attic, go next door to the thrift shop or rent a dress from the Cinderella Boutique," Hull said. "And guess what, if I'm around, I'm going to recruit you for honor guard."