As we prepare for our 21st annual Phoenix Veterans Day Parade this Saturday, we urge you to consider these ways you can show veterans you care on this important day. (Courtesy of www.military.com)
1. SHOW UP
Attend a Veterans Day event in your area ‒ not just a picnic with friends, but an honest-to-goodness parade or service for veterans. (The Phoenix Veterans Day Parade is a great choice!) Roy Rogers said, “We can’t all be heroes; someone has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by.” Veterans Day is a great opportunity to do just that.
There are a plethora of wonderful organizations who offer all manner of support, services and appreciation for our service members. To get a few ideas for donations, you can check out this page.
3. FLY A FLAG – CORRECTLY
Veterans Day is a great opportunity to fly the flag! Just make sure you’re observing the proper rules for display. Not sure exactly what those are? Check out Military.com’s guide to the flag.
4. ASK SOMEONE ABOUT THEIR SERVICE
It seems like we all know someone who has served and Veterans Day is a great time to ask them about their service. Some questions to get started are: What did you do in the military? How long did you serve? What was your favorite moment in all your time in the service? Did anyone else in your family serve? Why did you choose to go into the service branch you did? Do not ask if they’ve killed anyone and should your veteran be a combat vet who is either unwilling to share or plainly states what they went through, be supportive without being intrusive. Sometimes you don’t have to say anything, just listen and give them your full attention.
If you know a veteran, write a simple postcard or e-card that recognizes them on Veterans Day. If you don’t know a veteran, look up the closest military installation and send one there. Small acts of recognizing someone’s service, even anonymously, are appreciated.
6. DON’T CONFUSE VETERANS DAY WITH MEMORIAL DAY
Veterans Day is a time to thank those who are serving or have served and are still with us. Memorial Day is to reflect and remember those who lost their lives in service to their country. Confusing the two or combining the two diminishes the importance of both.
7. VISIT A VA HOSPITAL
Find out what the policies are at your nearest VA hospital for interacting with patients or volunteering, and spend the day with a veteran. Many VA facilities will have events on Veterans Day or a special lunch you can help prepare. Even if you never interact with a veteran, helping at a facility is a way to give back.
8. GET OUTDOORS WITH A VETERAN
Invite a veteran or a military family to explore a national park ‒ admission is free for all visitors on Veterans Day. Being outside helps improve physical and mental health, boosts emotional well-being, and is a great way to celebrate the day with a veteran.
We hope you will join us at the 21st Annual Phoenix Veterans Day Parade on November 11, 2017, to see Celebrity Grand Marshal Loretta Swit and all our Veteran Grand Marshals. This year’s parade theme is “SILENT SACRIFICE: Honoring Our Cold War Veterans.” The parade typically boasts more than 100 entries, and this year will have a special float with nearly Cold War Veterans riding on it. The parade will also feature patriotic floats, high school marching bands, JROTC marching units, color guards, Veterans Service Organizations, animals, novelty units and much, much more.
For more information on the parade and the parade route, click HERE.