There are a number of 2013 Veteran's Day events planned in the Jacksonville, FL area to honor the military service of American men and women. In addition many restaurants offer free or discounted dining and military members and veterans are also eligible for free haircuts.
Veterans Day, originally known as Armistice Day, has been observed since the end of World War I and in President Wilson's words was to be "filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…"
Parades, Celebrations and Ceremonies:
A celebration will be held at Browns Creek Fish at 5212 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville. Sponsored by the Northeast FL Chapter of Heroes on the Water, the event includes kayaking and an old-fashioned barbecue. www.heroesonthewater.org
Wreath Laying Ceremony at 1pm at the Veterans Memorial in Billard Park, 11642 Brady Rd., Jacksonville www.mandarincommunityclub.org
A Veteran’s Fly-In and Open House will be held from 1-5pm at Hanger H in Cecil Center, 13510 Aerospace Way near the Jacksonville JetPort at Cecil Airport. Veterans may take a free “discovery flight” and with their families can tour FSCJ’s aviation and air traffic control center. Reservations are recommended for the flights and can be made by calling (904) 586-3660.
As part of Jacksonville’s Week of Valor, the Veteran’s Day parade will step off from Everbank Field and travel west on Bay St. to the Prime Osborn Convention Center. In addition to veterans groups, the parade will feature active-duty and retired military units, senior military officials, local high school marching bands, ROTC units and floats. http://www.makeascenedowntown.com/Events/Veterans-Day-Parade.aspx
A ceremony to recognize and honor veterans of the Korean War will be held at 10am at Francis Field in St. Augustine. Rear Adm. Rick Williamson, commander, Navy Region Southeast, Jacksonville Naval Air Station will be the featured speaker. www.staugustine-450.com/nov11-veterans-day-ceremony
World War II veteran retired Army Cpl. John Valente will be the speaker at a celebration beginning at 10:30am at 4750 Palm Valley Rd in Ponte Vedra Beach. Several riding clubs will be participating and there will be dual taps and bagpipes. Attendees should bring lawn chairs or blankets. www.pontevedravalley.com
Veterans of Foreign War Post 3270 will present Veterans Day at the Park beinning at 1:30pm at Beaches Veterans Memorial Park. Retired Navy Capt. Richard Stratton and Alice Stratton will be speaking, and the event will include live music and a drill team exhibition. (9040 220-3630
A memorial program will be held from 3-5pm at Lakeside Park Veterans’ Memorial, 2200 Florida A1A, St. Augustine Beach. The program includes speakers and refreshments. www.sabevents.com
A concert to benefit the Missing In Action Project will be held from 5-9pm at the Green Turtle Tavern in Fernandina Beach. www.Miap.us.com
Throughout The Weekend
The National Park Service is waiving entrance fees to all of its parks for all visitors throughout Veterans Day weekend. For more info. or to find a park near you visit http://www.nps.gov/findapark/military-honor.htm.
On Monday, 11/11 active/inactive/retired military member of any branch, including the National Guard can go to any Great Clips and receive a free haircut or pick up a free haircut card to use, with proof of service, any day before Dec. 31, 2013. Non-military customers who get haircuts that day will receive a free haircut card that they may give to a military member to use before 12/31/2013. http://www.greatclips.com/about-us/press-room/vets-day-promotion-2013
Free or Discounted Dining:
On Veterans Day many restaurants offer free or discounted dining to military veterans or active duty military members. Following are some of the participating restaurants; please check with the individual restaurant in advance for details and be prepared to show proof of service.
Applebees: Free entrée
Bob Evans: All-you-can eat hotcakes
BJs Restaurant and Brewhouse: Free lunch entrée or mini pizza for dinner
California Pizza Kitchen: free pizza
Champps Americana: Free burger
Chilis: Free signature entrée
Dennys: Free all-you-can-eat pancakes
Einstein Bros. Bagels: Free bagel and schmear
Golden Corral: Free meal from 4pm-9pm
Hooters: Free meal when you buy a drink
Krispy Kreme: Free donut and small coffee
Longhorn Steakhouse: Free onion appetizer and non-alcoholic beverage (11/11-11/14)
Olive Garden: Free entrée for veteran and 10% discount for dining companions
Outback Steakhouse: Free onion appetizer and beverage on Veterans Day; 10% discount through 12/31/13
Red Lobster: Free appetizer (11/11-11/14)
Subway: Free 6” sub or flatbread
Texas Roadhouse: Free entrée and non-alcoholic beverage from 11am-2pm on Monday
T.G.I. Fridays: Buy one entrée, get one free
Village Inn: Free breakfast (choose from specific items)