Tacoma Veterans Day Events

Tacoma Veterans Day Events, Shows & Things to do – Tacoma News Tribune.

WikipediaFollow the link above for some really neat Veterans Day events, be sure to click so you can find all the details about free entrance, e.g. if ID cards are required. You can find many on either Sunday (Veterans Day) or on Monday (Veterans Day Observed). This is a great way to teach your kids about how great and rich our own history is with regards to the service provided by wonderful men and women. (I always thought it would be cool to have been a WAC…)

Saturday November 10th

  • State Parks: Free Entrance – No Discover Pass Required
  • Auburn: 47th Annual Veterans Day Parade at 11am on Main Street

Sunday November 11th

  • Seattle VA will induct 2 local Veterans onto the Wall of Heroes at 8:30am near East Clinic in Bldg 100
  • Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium: Free entrance for Active Duty/Retired Military
  • NW Trek: Free entrance for Active Duty/Retired Military
  • Washington State History Museum: World War I and origins of Armistice Day (FREE for Veterans and Active Military)
  • Museum of Flight: Veterans Day Recognition Ceremony at 11am (FREE entry for Veterans and Active Duty)
  • Olympia Symphony: Reduced tickets at Honoring Americas Freedom Concert 7pm at Washington Center for the Performing Arts

Monday November 12th

  • Puyallup Veterans Day Celebration: Pioneer Park Pavilion at 1pm
  • Seattle Childrens Museum: Veterans Day Activities

Ways to Honor the Veterans Near Us

Visit and tour a local military cemetery to pay your respects to those who have gone before, the Tahoma Cemetery on Sunday November 11th at 11AM. The cemetery has a Memorial walkway containing 28 memorials that commemorate solders of many of the 20th Century’s wars. A Blue Star Memorial is also located north of the Public Information Center. 18600 Southeast 240th Street Kent WA 98042

Go by the Washington State Soldiers Home in Orting at 1301 Orting/Kapowsin Hwy Orting WA 98360 at 2pm on November 11th for speakers and a reception. People who live in assisted living can ALWAYS use a visit and a friendly face to see. Bring the kids and let the vets tell their stories, it’s a good time to be had by all.

For even more events in other areas around Washington State, check a listing provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs here.  Above all, THANK YOU to those who have served and for those families who have supported their loved ones while serving. It is sometimes a thankless job, but not by me. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for all your hard work, dedication and ability to get it done!

Veterans Day Free Meals 2012

I am a HUGE supporter of our troops and this weekend is special for them. In the past, military members have not always been supported and loved as many of us do now. So, I take the time to honor my family (Dad and Husband) as well as the many friends and co-workers who have served. One way to do that, take them out to eat on Sunday November 11th. Its even easier with these participating restaurants:


  • Applebees
  • Olive Garden
  • Dennys (Monday Nov 12th)
  • TGI Fridays (Monday Nov 12th)
  • Chilis
  • Famous Daves
  • Red Robin (Monday Nov 12th)
  • Krispy Kreme
  • Outback Steakhouse (Sunday & Monday Nov 12th) – Blooming onion only
  • Einstein Brothers Bagels
  • Sizzler (Monday Nov 12th)
  • Red Lobster – Appetizer only
  • McCormick & Schmicks
  • Little Ceasars (crazy bread only)
  • BJs Restaurant & Brewhouse (Monday Nov 12th)

There are plenty of Veterans Day free meals to be had this year as well as some other additional discounts on items other than food. You’ll be able to stop into any of the restaurants below on or around Veterans Day this year to get your free meal.

Tip: Pay close attention to the date listed and what you need to bring so you qualify for the free meal. They don’t all take place on Veterans Day (Sunday, November 11, 2012 but observed on Monday, November 12, 2012) and some require different forms of identification.

Tip: Some of these Veterans Day free meals are nationwide but some are only at participating locations. Please call the restaurant you plan on visiting before you leave home to make sure they are taking part.

Looking for more freebies like this one? There are plenty of other military freebies that are available all year round. You can also get free meals on your birthday at many restaurants around the country.

via Veterans Day Free Meals 2012.

“Pictures for Patriots Contest” — Take Two! | Operation Gratitude Blog

“Pictures for Patriots Contest” — Take Two! | Operation Gratitude Blog

This is a great contest for the littles.  It is after Memorial Day and too soon for Veterans Day, but it is still a great practice to show our gratitude for our troops. The airmen, soldiers, sailors and marines who put themselves in difficult situations, just so you and I can live freely. I try to do a gratitude journal every day (it’s more like every week at this point, but hey – I’m trying). Point is, we can always teach our kids to be grateful for what they have and what others do for them.

This blog has directions where your child can submit a drawing where they can thank troops for their sacrifices.  And, if your childs drawing is chosen, they may win a prize and their picture will be chosen as a magazine cover.

WHO: Students entering grades K-12 may submit original artwork to the “Pictures for Patriots 2012 Contest”

WHAT: Artwork (up to 8″ x 10″ laid out in a vertical format) with a “Patriotic-Thank you Military” theme.  The winning entries will be selected by a panel of Veterans. Enter as often as you wish — the more the better: All appropriate artwork submitted to the contest will be sent in Operation Gratitude care packages!

WHEN: Entries may be submitted now through July 10. (Must be postmarked by July 10, 2012.) Include name of entrant, plus age, grade and full mailing address and contact email address on the back of each entry.

Click the link above for the directions on entry such as: mailing address and other specific requirements such as paper size and portrait vs. landscape.

PRIZES: ALL entrants will receive a special Operation Gratitude Dog Tag just for entering! 

In addition, the top three winning entries will receive these additional prizes:

1st PLACE:
•$100 Target Gift card
•Operation Gratitude Battalion Buddy
•Paracord  “Survival” Bracelet
•Artwork featured on the front cover of the next Operation Gratitude Magazine
•Copy of the Magazine

2nd PLACE:
•Operation Gratitude Battalion Buddy
•Paracord ”Survival” Bracelet
•Artwork featured on the back cover of the next Operation Gratitude Magazine
•Copy of the Magazine

3rd PLACE:
•Paracord ”Survival” Bracelet
•Artwork featured in the next Operation Gratitude Magazine
•Copy of the Magazine

Every child receives a small token of appreciation in the mail.

Reunification: Children Returning Home « casaofnela

Reunification: Children Returning Home « casaofnela.

Many in our community are affected by multiple deployments and military separations.  This blog post talks about the best processes, at different age groups, to help ease the integration process.  Adults have a hard time with separation, and children do too.  I myself was an Air Force brat myself and an Army wife.  While a child might intellectually know why the parent is gone for long periods of time, the emotional fall out during re-integration can be difficult for a young person to handle.  This post has great ways of re-connecting with your children and helping them navigate those feelings.  Re-integration can be difficult, but keeping a child connected during deployment is also important.

Some of my ideas for keeping parents connected to the family life and routine while deployed:

  • If the deployed parent has a key piece of the bedtime routine, like reading books, gather the favorite books and have the soon-to-be deployed parent record the reading of the story on a digital recorder.  Digital recorders do not wear out as easily as the cassette tapes of my youth.  Be sure to play the recording before deployment to make sure the rhythm and cadence is just right for the little ones.
  • Record small special messages on blank photo cards, put a picture of both the deployed individual in uniform and in civilian clothes. This reinforces the reason for the deployment, but humanizes the parent at the same time.  Kids love to get mail and the visuals are a great way to keep them connected.
  • Have the family work together to send care packages. Have the kids create a craft, a drawing or even perform a dance/skit on DVD and send it in the care package. They will feel special about supporting their parent and goodness knows those types of things are always appreciated!
  • Before my husband was deployed, we went to Build a Bear and daddy put a message on a voicebox.  So, when they wanted a hug from their father, they could squeeze the bear.  Archie wore out his voicebox right after daddy came home.  Thank goodness – he was home to re-record it.
  • Send the deployed parent with a box of notecards or postcards. Kids love mail and anything they receive is one more connection.
  • Take advantage of Skype, Messenger, Webcams etc. that you can get access to.  That real time connection on the video monitor is priceless.

What are some of the ways you stay connected during deployment?