Air Force Chapel Hard Hat Tour (Members Only)

June 26, 2024

About the tour: A history of the United States Air Force Academy campus and Cadet Chapel will be provided to the participants prior to the tour of the chapel. The presentation will include physical parts of the building that haven’t been seen for over 60 years, close up viewing of a restored stain glass Dalle de Verre strip window, and details of the extensive matching that is taking place for all elements that are visible to the public, down to matching screw heads to replicate the originals used on the building. The tour will take you from the exterior of the amazing skeletal structure of the chapel to the interior of the structure. We will visit three different rooms of worship. No photos are allowed.

About the building: The United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel is the most visited man-made tourist attraction in Colorado.  Architectural Digest notes the chapel as the most iconic building in Colorado. The chapel was completed in 1962, dedicated in 1963. This iconic chapel was designed by Walter Netsch of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. The Cadet Chapel was the first fully federally funded building to be awarded the American Institute of Architects 25 Year Award in 1996. It was named a National Historic Landmark in 2004 and is considered a classic example of modernist architecture. The Cadet Chapel’s unique design features 17 spires and a steel frame that is comprised of 100 identical tetrahedrons, each 75 feet long.

About the tour guides: Duane Boyle is the long time Campus Architect for the United States Air Force Academy and continues in that role today. He oversees all master planning and design on the iconic Air Force Academy campus comprising 18,500 acres. After attending the University of Colorado and receiving his Bachelor of Environmental Design, Master of Architecture, and Master of Public Administration degrees, Duane worked for Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM) prior to starting at the Academy and shortly after developed a friendship with Walter Netsch, Jr. who, for SOM, was in charge of the design of the campus specifically designing the Cadet Chapel himself.

Marty Rickett joined JE Dunn in 1995 and has since made a notable impact on the landscape in Southern Colorado working in virtually every market sector from healthcare to higher education. He has had the privilege of delivering projects for numerous repeat clients including the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Parkview Medical Center, UCHealth Memorial Hospital, and the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Currently, Marty is serving on the team to restore the historic United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel, his fourth project at the Air Force Academy, a project that he considers to be the apex of his career.

Accessibility: This tour will not have wheelchair access or areas to rest during the tour. This is an active construction site and therefore we will require long pants and sleeved shirts. A site access release form will also be required to tour the building.

******* IMPORTANT *******

This is an active construction site and anything can happen. PPE (hard hat, safety vest, safety glasses and gloves) is required for this tour. DAF will have loaner sets available for use, but if you would prefer to bring your own, please do so.

For safety purposes, attendees’ clothing must adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Close-toed sturdy shoes: Boots do not have to be steel toe. Hiking boots are permitted if they are durable and at least ankle high. Tennis shoes, high heels, sandals, flip flops, and fashion boots are not acceptable footwear for the tour.
  • Full-length pants or jeans: Pants must be long enough to touch the top of your shoes. Shorts, capri pants, skirts and dresses should not be worn.
  • Long-sleeve shirts

We will park offsite and walk to the chapel. All parking and meeting location information will be in your confirmation email.