Installation Overview --Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, South Carolina


Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, home of the Marine Corps' Atlantic Coast fixed-wing, fighter-attack aircraft assets, is located in the heart of the South Carolina Lowcountry. Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort is among the United States military's most important and most historically colorful installations. Consisting of some 6,900 acres 70 miles southwest of Charleston, South Carolina, the installation is home to seven Marine Corps F/A- 18 squadrons. Three versions of the F/A-18 Hornet are found aboard MCAS Beaufort, the F/A-18 Hornet A/Cs and the F/A-18 D.

The acreage occupied by the Air Station was formerly the site of several prominent Lowcountry plantations. In 1779, during the Revolutionary War, British troops landed at what is now the Laurel Bay Housing area and battled American revolutionary troops at Gray's Hill. The Beaufort area was also a staging area for both Confederate and Union troops during the civil war and elaborate plantation homes still line Bay Street, overlooking the Beaufort River.

On June 15, 1943, the Civil Aeronautics Authority established Naval Air Station Beaufort as an auxiliary air station which supported advanced training of anti-submarine patrol squadrons which ensured the security of shipping along the Eastern seaboard.

Fightertown's Hornet squadrons rotate overseas regularly, either for deployments to support Operation Iraqi Freedom, for six month Western Pacific deployments or aboard Navy aircraft carriers. At any given time up to half the squadrons may be found at various points around the globe, and are routinely called into action when the Commander in Chief requires airborne strikes or support for ground forces. Most recently squadrons have seen combat in the skies over Serbia and Iraq.

MCAS Beaufort has weathered installation closures in the post-cold War, and with the recognition of the growing role of air power in conflicts in the developing world.

Official website for MCAS Beaufort

Location/Driving Directions

Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort is located in the southeast corner of South Carolina's low-country, within Beaufort County. MCAS Beaufort is situated 65 miles south of Charleston and 50 miles north of Savannah, Georgia.

There are no shuttles or public transportation from Charleston International Airport or Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport to MCAS Beaufort. If you need transportation from either airport upon arrival, please contact, The Operations Duty Officer at 843-228-7301/2/3.

From Charleston International Airport To MCAS-Beaufort: Upom Leaving airport get on I-526 (Mark Clark Expressway) heading South. When I-526 ends take a right at the stop light. This will put you on US17 South. When you come to Jacksonboro you will veer to the left (still on US17 South) following signs to Beaufort. You will stay on US17 for approximately 50 miles altogether. At Garden's Corner, you will take a left on Hwy 21 South towards Beaufort. MCAS is on the left at the second stoplight.

Beaufort from Savannah International Airport or from I-95 Northbound to MCAS: Upon Leaving airport get on I-95 North. Take Exit 8, Beaufort/Hilton Head. Go 5 miles on four(4) lane road. Take left toward Beaufort. Go 3 miles to stop sign. Take a left on hwy 278. Go 1 mile and turn right on Hwy 170. After about 10 miles and 2 bridges you will come to a stop light, intersection of Hwy 170 and 802. Turn left. Go to the next stop light and turn left on Hwy 21 North. MCAS-Beaufort will be 2 miles down on the right (You can turn on the ramp or at the stop light).
Driving Directions

On I-95 South, take Exit 33. Hwy 21 combines with US 17 North. Follow signs towards Beaufort. At Garden's Corner merge right onto Hwy 21. MCAS will be on your left.

Main Phone Numbers

Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

Base Operator DSN: 832-7100

Bachelor Enlisted Quarters (843)228-6905 DSN: 335-6905

Bachelor Officer Quarters (843) 228-7658 /(843) 228-7676 Fax: (843) 228-7674 DSN: 335-7658 DSN Fax: 335-7674

Beaufort Naval Hospital (843) 228-5600/ 888-231-0742 DSN: 335-5600

Billeting Office (843) 228-6454 DSN: 335-6454

Branch Dental Clinic (843) 228-7512 DSN: 335-7512

Child Development Center (843) 846-1160 Fax: (843) 846-2531

Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) (843) 228-7353 Fax: (843) 228-6105 DSN: 335-7353 DSN Fax: 335-6105

Housing Office (843) 228-6000 Fax: (843) 228-6422 DSN: 335-6000 DSN Fax: 335-6422

MCAS Branch Dental Clinic (843) 228-7512

MCAS Branch Medical Clinic (843) 228-7051 DSN: 335-7051

Population/Major Units Assigned

Morning Colors Ceremony. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

MAG-31 has seven F/A 18 squadrons, and a logistics/support squadron. Support Commands include MWSS-273, CSSD-23,AND MACS 2 DET-A. The population of the on-base "city" includes nearly 4,000 active-duty servicemembers and more than 700 civilian workers.

Temporary Lodging

The Detreville House. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

The Detreville House (bldg 1108) is the temporary lodging facility for MCAS Beaufort. The DeTreville House (TLF) is located next to the Hard Corps Cafe. This 66 room facility has rooms with and without kitchens and also king-size rooms. Due to recruit graduation at MCRD Parris Island, out in town lodging is limited Thurs-Sun, please call for reservations. Service members on accompanied PCS orders must check in with TLF for availability/non-availability statement for TLA reimbursement.

For single or unaccompanied service members, the S-1 or Staff Duty Officer will make arrangements for you to check into the barracks.

Bachelor Officer Quarters are available and Geo Bachelor Housing is available for E-7 and below. The cost depends on how many per room and rank. For more information call the Bachelor Enlisted Quarters at DSN 312-228-6905.


New SNCO Housing located in Laurel Bay - Freedom Sound. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

Service members can apply for housing prior to arrival by mailing or faxing a DD 1746 (Housing Application) along with detachment or web orders. The DD 1746 can be obtained from any housing office. The service member with detachment orders can check in with the Officer In Charge, Installation Personnel Administration Center (IPAC) located at Bldg. 807. The service member can then provide endorsement and orders to the housing office in order to place their name on the waiting list or to accept available housing. The detachment date from your last permanent duty station is what becomes the control date on the wait list.

Housing has been Privatized with Tri-Command Communities in charge. Call 843-846-5300 or 866-803-1487 for more information or a tour of homes. Once you have seen all that Tri-Command Communities has to offer, you can schedule an appointment at our housing offices located on Parris Island and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort. At the Military Housing office, you will fill out a Housing Application. Tri-Command Communities will receive your referral from the Military Housing Office. At that time, we will assign a home to you based on availability, rank in the service and the number of persons occupying the home. A new Tri-Command Communities address will be given to you one week prior to a scheduled move-in date.Visit the MCAS Beaufort website to find all of the forms needed to apply for housing. For questions regarding your housing application status, please contact the MCAS Military Housing Office at 843-228-6000 or the Parris Island Housing Office at 843-228-2583 or 843-228-2853.

Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) Manager, in close coordination with Family Housing and TCMH, work closely together to meet the needs for specifically Cat 4 families and other families assigned to the program. A family, Cat 4 priority, inbound should have their EFMP coordinator contact the EFMP Office at 843-228-6903 at MCAS Beaufort or 843-228-3188 at Parris Island as soon as possible. Our goal is to have a home available upon your arrival. Families, Cat 4 status, are given priority to housing. Homes on base have air conditioning and were constructed to accommodate special needs for all ranks.

For our single service members MCAS Beaufort has two man rooms with a small refrigerator, microwave, wall locker, bed with drawers, free cable, outside grills, picnic tables, heat and air conditioning. GEO Bachelor housing is available for a monthly fee.


Grades Pre-K through 2nd. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

The Laurel Bay Schools are part of the larger consolidated school district known as the South Carolina/Ft. Stewart Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (SC/Ft. Stewart DoD DDESS). The Fort Jackson Schools in Columbia, SC and the Ft. Stewart Schools in Hinesville, GA are also part of our consolidated district. The schools are attended by dependent children in grades PK-6 who reside on federal property in the vicinities of Beaufort, Columbia, and Hinesville. Our students represent three branches of the Armed Forces: Army, Marine Corps and Navy.

Galer Elementary School accommodates children in grades PK-3, Elliott Elementary serves children in grades 1-3, and Bolden Elementary School houses children in grades 4-6.

Technology is integrated unto all areas of the curriculum through the use of a wide variety of software and hardware components. Students receive instruction leading to mastery of the DoDEA Technology Standards. All classrooms have computers for student use, and all schools have a computer lab. Every student has access to the Internet and electronic mail systems.

The alternative school in Beaufort County is called Right Choices and is located at 2900 Mink Point Blvd, Beaufort, SC 29902. You may contact them at 843-322-0744.

In South Carolina, parents/guardians may home school their children in one of three ways:

1. Through the local district
2. Through the South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools
3. Through a private home school association

The parent must hold at least a high school diploma or its equivalent. The home schooling program must meet certain specified requirements for curriculum, scheduling, lesson planning and record keeping. Parents must ensure that the child has access to library facilities.

Beaufort County School District serves South Carolina's most rapidly growing county, with a student population of over 19,000 students attend 28 schools across the county.

Child Care

CDC located in Laurel Bay Housing. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

The MCAS Beaufort ‘s Child Development Center (CDC) programs include: hourly care for 6 weeks of age to five years (up to 25 hours per week), part-day preschool for three & four year olds, full day care for thirteen months to five years old.

The dependents of: active duty military, active duty reservists, retired military, DOD civilians & DOD contractors are eligible to attend CYT programs. The fees are based upon total family income (TFI). Priority care is given to single/dual active duty military that are stationed at MCAS Beaufort. There is an excess demand list, projected wait list and preference for care wait list. MCAS Beaufort has one Child Development Center, and does not have a Youth Center. However, dependents can use any CYT programs at Laurel Bay and Parris Island.

The MCAS Beaufort Child Development Center offers a variety of child care programs. Following is a description of each: Full day developmental programs for pre-toddlers, toddlers and preschool children ages 11 months to 5 years of age. The full day program hours are 6:30 a.m. until 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Drop-In Child Care is now open in Bldg 1142 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.. Reservations may be made up to 2 weeks in advance.

Please call 843-228-7114/7290 to reserve space. Maximum usage 20 hours/week. $7 registration fee & $2.50/hour. SC Certificate of Immunization required for all children.

Family Child Care (FCC) homes offer safe, high quality child care through high standards for quality and well-trained staff in a family/home atmosphere with a small group of children in either government housing or a private home off the installation. For more information call 843-846-2270. FCC Referral List website.

The School Age Care (SAC) program is offered for children 5 to 12 years of age, or Kindergarten - 6th grade at the Parris Island and Laurel Bay Youth Centers. The Youth Centers provide a safe haven for school age children offering recreation activities, and before and after school programs. The facility boasts a full sized gymnasium, playground, arts and craft room, game room and teen center. Rates are base upon Total Family Income.MCRD Parris Island, 843-228-3302 Ext. 7344; Laurel Bay, 843-228-7640, Monday - Friday 6:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.

The Youth Centers provide a safe haven for school age children offering recreation activities and before and after school programs. The facility boasts a full sized gymnasium, playground, arts and craft room, game room and teen center. The center is affiliated with the Boys and Girls Club of America.

There are 2 Youth Centers available for use by personnel stationed at MCAS Beaufort:

* MCRD Parris Island, located aboard Parris Island. They can be reached at 843-228-3302, ext. 7344.
* Laurel Bay, located in the Laurel Bay Housing area. They can be reached at 843-228-7640.

The centers are open Monday through Friday, 6:00 am until 6:00 pm.

Medical Care

Naval Hospital, Beaufort. Photo courtesy U.S. Marine Corps

Naval Hospital, Beaufort consists of the hospital and two Branch Medical Clinics – one at Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD), Parris Island and the other at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS), Beaufort.

Naval Hospital, Beaufort is one of the few military medical facilities which is a complete military compound in itself, rather than a tenant of a larger command. Located within the grounds of the Naval Hospital, Beaufort are 53 family housing single-story units, two Bachelor Enlisted Quarters, able to accommodate 190 residents, a Navy Exchange Retail store, Gas Station and Mini Mart with package store. This command also has its own complete Public Works facility. Recreational facilities include two softball fields, swimming pool, lighted tennis and basketball courts, outdoor fitness course, a gym, fishing pier and a children’s play ground.

Naval Hospital, Beaufort provides general medical, surgical, and emergency services to all Active Duty Navy and Marine Corps personnel, as well as Retired military personnel and all military dependents residing in the Beaufort area, a total population of approximately 35,000 beneficiaries.

All eligible patients with medical problems not covered by the specialties within the hospital are referred to either an appropriate military hospital, or receive treatment elsewhere which is covered by the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services (TRICARE).

When referral for civilian care is initiated, family members will be specifically advised concerning the health benefits available and expected costs by the Coordinated Care Department located on the first floor of the hospital. Their phone number is 843-228-5506.

The Naval Hospital has one physician on duty to treat emergency cases. The Emergency Department personnel use a "triage" system to identify those individuals with serious life-threatening illness/injury requiring immediate attention and those individuals whose condition is not serious and could await physician evaluation.