As the Space Force continues to make itself known in DoD installations across the country, Air Force bases are getting new names, new missions and new Guardians to lead the charge on the next frontier. AFB Patrick now has a new life as the Patrick Space Force Base, and this is one exciting place you definitely want to be! Not only are there plenty of state-of-the-art buildings everywhere on base, but the installation’s location means fun and sun are always within reach!
Located between sunny Satellite Beach and Cocoa Beach, Patrick Space Force Base is home to Space Launch Delta 45, the 45th Space Wing (45 SW). The 45th is responsible for controlling and operating Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and the Eastern Range. For a while in the 40s, it operated as Naval Air Station Banana River. Since then, it’s been an Air Force base. A few years back, it was renamed a Space Force Installation as part of the standing up of the DoD’s newest branch.
Patrick Space Force Base Location
What was formerly known as AFB Patrick is located on the East Coast of Central Florida. This Space Force installation is just three miles south of Cocoa Beach and approximately 8 miles north of Melbourne, all of which are located in Brevard County. Interestingly, it sits on an island with the Banana River directly to the west and the Atlantic Ocean on the east, separated only by State Road A1A.
Patrick SFB can be reached by car using the following routes.
Heading in from the north? Take I-95 S and follow signs for Patrick SFB
Coming from Southern Florida? Take I-95 N along the coast of Florida and follow signs for Patrick SFB
Coming from the west? Take I-40 E to I-20 E to I-10 E to I-95 S and follow signs for Patrick SFB
Flying to the closest airports: Melbourne International Airport, Orlando International Airport
Melbourne International Airport (15.1 miles) – Melbourne is served by Allegiant, American Airlines, and Delta Airlines, with non-stop service to 5 locations. Flights from the UK to Melbourne began via TUI in March 2022. Passenger service to Patrick SFB is located on the ground level adjacent to baggage claim.
Orlando International Airport (58.3 miles) – Orlando is served by all the major airlines and multiple regional airlines. Several shuttles go to Patrick SFB hourly from the ground level (Space #18).
Driving would allow you to visit nearby Melbourne and the beaches in the area. Patrick SFB is on an island off the east coast of Florida, so be prepared for a long drive!
Get excited about experiencing all four seasons at Patrick SFB! Of course, the highs in winter are nowhere near what they’re like in cooler climates. You can expect the following.
Winter – highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s
Summer – highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s.
Contacts at Patrick SFB
Airman & Family Readiness: (321) 494-5676
Base Operator: (321) 494-1110
Chapel: (321) 494-4073
Child Development Center: (321) 494-7028
Civilian Personnel Office: (321) 494-4189
Command Post: (321) 494-7001
Commissary: (321) 494-5841
DEERS and ID Card Office: (321) 494-6144
Dental Clinic: (321) 494-6366
Equal Opportunity Office: (321) 494-6333
Family Advocacy: (321) 494-8171
Family Child Care Program: (321) 494-2233
Household Goods & Inbound Transportation Office: (321) 494-5084/5083
Housing Office: (321) 494-2594
Inspector General: (321) 494-4373
Legal Assistance: (321) 494-2281
Lodging Reservations: (321) 494-5428/6590
Mental Health Clinic: (321) 494-8234
Outdoor Recreation: (321) 494-2042
Pediatrics: (321) 494-8241
Personnel Support Office: (321) 494-4252
Pharmacy: (321) 494-9313
Public Affairs Office: (321) 494-5933
Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) 24-HR Line: (321) 494-7272
School Liaison Office: (321) 494-1991
Veterinarian: (321) 494-6080
Welcome Center: (321) 494-5428
Mission and Units
Patrick’s mission is simple – to act as one team and deliver access to space for Guardians and the country.
Mission areas include Eastern Range Operations and Launch Ops support. What might surprise you to learn is the Patrick mission areas also overlap to include expeditionary and contingency readiness, too.
Units at Patrick SFB include Space Launch Delta 45, the 45th Medical Group, Space Launch Delta 45 Support, Space Launch Delta 45 Operations, and multiple staff agencies and mission partners.
Space Launch Delta 45’s priorities are to maintain mission success and help shape the future of space exploration.
Patrick SFB History
Patrick Space Force Base began its service to the Nation during World War II as the Banana River Naval Air Station in 1940. NAS Banana River supported seaplane patrols. Seven years later, it was shuttered.
In 1950, the Air Force named its long-range proving ground AFB Patrick. This was to honor the late Major General Mason M. Patrick. Patrick retired as the first chief of the Air Corps in 1927. During his six-year tenure as chief of Air Service, he approved the first flight around the world by Army pilots in 1924. He initiated the experimental flying organization at Wright Field, Ohio, and recommended legislation for the Air Service to become the Air Corps in 1926 under the Secretary of War but separate from the War Department, which eventually led to the U.S. Air Force as an independent branch.
Then, in 1979, Patrick Air Force Base and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station joined missions. Collectively, they became the Eastern Space and Missile Center (ESMC). The Eastern Test Range and affiliated facilities supported the Department of Defense, National Air and Space Administration, Air Force, and other test and evaluation agencies, including the operation of “down-range” facilities at Antigua and Ascension Islands.
What makes Patrick stand out is that it’s the first of its kind. Patrick Air Force Base and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station rebranded as Patrick SFB, marking it as the first Space Force Installation! However, space exploration is nothing new for the DoD. In fact, it’s been happening for nearly 100 years.
Things to Do Around Patrick SFB
America’s Best Value Inn Satellite Beach Melbourne (3 miles)
La Quinta Inn by Wyndham Cocoa Beach-Port Canaveral (7 miles)
South Bean Inn (3.9 miles)
Goombay’s Beachside (3.4 miles) – Caribbean fusion, seafood, live music five nights a week
Hula Moon Tiki Grill (7 miles) – Hawaii and California-inspired cuisine, Polynesian-themed
Banana River Cafe (6.2 miles) – breakfast and lunch staples
Air Force Space and Missile Museum (38.2 miles) is located at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and contains historical pieces involved in developing U.S. Space Force space launch activities.
Andretti Thrill Park (16 miles) is located in Melbourne and offers go-kart tracks, batting cages, amusement park rides, laser tag, miniature golf, a ropes course, a climbing wall, and an arcade.
Game Over Retro Arcade & Bar (19 miles) in West Melbourne is the perfect place to go for a great meal, a good beer, and retro arcade games and pinball machines.
Patrick SFB Housing
First things first – call the MHO on base when you get orders. They can give you all the most current info about Keesler AFB housing. After, explore these options that are awaiting you on base.
Patrick offers unaccompanied housing for unaccompanied Airmen in the ranks of E-1 to E-3 and E-4 with less than three years of service. Each Airman is provided a private sleeping room, furnishings, bed linens and supplies required for comfortable living. Unaccompanied Airmen in the rank of E-4 with greater than three years of service and above can live in the local community.
As you might expect, on base housing is privatized. Hunt Communities manages on base housing. This private housing company offers 616 single family homes in several communities on base.
A dazzling array of vibrant communities are close to Patrick, so your family will have plenty of choices. Palm Bay and Melbourne are south of base while Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral are to the north.
Schools Near Patrick Space Force Base
Unfortunately, there are no schools located on base. However, mil-kids have access to the many schools located nearby in Brevard County. As with most DoD installations, it’s wise to check with your School Liaison Officer for specifics regarding your family’s situation. On-base residents will be required to attend specific schools, while living in town will result in other school selections.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Patrick SFB beaches open?
Yes, they are open. Both Blockhouse Beach and Tides Beach Club are accessible only by those with a DoD ID card. However, Tables Beach, 2nd Light Beach, Hangars Beach, and Pineda Beach are open to anyone. You can find visitor hours posted in parking lots. The Space Force forbids kites and drones.
Does Patrick SFB have a pool?
Yes, there is a pool at Patrick SFB for DoD ID Cardholders and family members. It is open SAT-SUN, 10 am – 2 pm.
Can families stay on Patrick SFB?
Yes, families with a member stationed at Patrick SFB can live on-base.
Can civilians go to Patrick SFB?
Sadly, no. You’ll need a DoD or Federal-issued identification card or a Patrick SFB-issued pass to enter.