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Veterans deserve to be celebrated every day, but Veterans Day is a great time to honor our veterans with special events, discounts, and celebrations. At Lincoln Military Housing, we are always grateful for the selfless sacrifices our veterans have made. Read below to learn more about Veterans Day and discover some fun ways to celebrate with family and friends while honoring our veterans.
A History of Veterans Day
The first Veterans Day was celebrated on November 11, 1919, and became an official national holiday in 1938. Veterans Day honors all American veterans, living or dead. It’s celebrated on November 11 because that date represents the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month that signaled the end of World War I. Veterans Day was initially called Armistice Day!
The US isn’t the only country that celebrates Veterans Day. Canada has Remembrance Day, Britain has Remembrance Sunday, and Australia and France also call it Veterans Day.
Here are a few more facts about today’s veterans:
- 18.2 million living veterans served during at least one war as of 2018
- 9 percent of veterans are women
- 7 million veterans served during the Vietnam War
- 7 million veterans served during the Persian Gulf War
- Of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II, about 496,777 were still alive as of 2018
- Connecticut was home to the highest percentage of World War II veterans as of 2018 at 7.1 percent
- 2 million veterans served during the Korean War
- As of 2017, the top three states with the highest percentage of Veterans were Alaska, Maine, and Montana, respectively
Now that you know a little bit more about Veterans Day, let’s look at ways to celebrate with the veterans in your life.
Veteran’s Day 2019 Celebrations
Celebrating Veterans Day is an excellent opportunity to honor the veterans in your life. Here are some things to do to celebrate Veterans Day this year:
Look for Local Events
Depending on where you live, there’s sure to be a Veterans Day celebration you can do with the whole family. Our communities host regular events to bring families together, such as picnics, events for kids, parades, and more. Neighborhoods all across the country host Veterans Day events and these gatherings will help you meet more veterans in your area.
Host a Lunch in a Vet’s Honor
Hosting a Veterans Day lunch at work or home is a great way to bring people together and remember the meaning behind the day. Make it a potluck and have every family bring their favorite dish. You could also go around and have everyone share their favorite memories about the vets in their life.
Create Veterans Day Care Packages
Not all vets are lucky enough to be home on Veterans Day, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t celebrate and honor their sacrifice. Spend some time this year creating care packages for deployed service members. Getting a care package is the perfect Veterans Day surprise for those spending the day overseas.
Volunteer in the Community
One of the best ways to celebrate the veterans in your community is to give back. There are many charitable organizations to choose from, including the Department of Veterans Affairs, Disabled American Veterans, Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, and many more. Your community might also have local organizations that benefit the vets in your area.
Veteran’s Day 2019 Discounts
Another way that communities and businesses celebrate veterans is to offer savings and discounts on Veterans Day. You can often find travel discounts, moving and home expenses, healthcare, food, and more. Here are some of the highlights this year:
Restaurants Offering Veterans Day Discounts
Many restaurants are proud to honor veterans this year. Vets receive a free meal at Applebee’s, BJ’s Restaurant, California Pizza Kitchen, Chili’s, Golden Corral, and many more. This list has more free meals!
Retail Stores Offering Veterans Day Discounts
In addition to free meals, veterans and their families can also find discounts at a variety of retail stores, including:
This Veterans Day, take the time to celebrate yourself if you’re a service member or the veterans in your life. These discounts and celebrations are just a small token of our gratitude for our veteran military members' service. From Lincoln Military, happy Veterans Day!