rows of American flags placed in the ground

What to Do for Veterans Day

Veterans Day (this coming Friday) gets less attention than some other holidays. Perhaps you’ve even met someone who was outraged to find the bank or post office closed on November 11. Which is a shame: given the hardships many Veterans have endured, one day’s inconvenience is a small price to pay in their honor.

Veterans Day deserves acknowledgment beyond a day off for federal workers, though. Even if you’ll be working regular Friday hours yourself, make some time to join the patriotic observances.

military truck in a parade

What ESGH People Do for Veterans Day

Dr. Jennifer Wright, Veterans Service Dog Program: As a family, the children and I walk around the neighborhood and purposefully notice the flags. I remind the kids to appreciate what this country has to offer and not ever assume that they are entitled to anything.

Cristen Reat, Program Director, BridgingApps:

  • Veterans Day is among our yearly days for hanging a flag on our house. We have taught our children that the flag should always be treated with respect, and that it should never touch the ground.  
  • As a Veteran myself, I am always eager to meet fellow Veterans and find out details about their service.
  • This year, I will be visiting my father’s grave. He was a Veteran of the Air Force and passed away last year. I will reflect on his life, on his service, and on my grandfather and great-grandfather who also served in the Armed Forces. 
  • We are not big fans of parades and other loud public events, because our son Vincent has many sensory issues. However, we love military bands and traditional songs of national pride, so we typically will watch something music-related on TV.

Other Things You Can Do

  • Houston’s official Veterans Day celebration and parade begins at 10 a.m. Friday near City Hall. If you’re reading this from somewhere else in the country, check the Veterans Administration website for events in your area.
  • If you can’t find a convenient event, or prefer not to brave the crowds and/or weather, try your own mini-parade: gather your household and any interested neighbors to walk around the block waving flags, and dressed in red, white, and blue. If you want to be a little more elaborate, feel free to decorate bikes, scooters, and the dog with flags and streamers.
  • If you or anyone in your household is a Veteran, bring out the old uniform for the day.
  • Have a patriotic lunch or supper: set up a flags-and-eagles centerpiece, and serve red-white-and-blue foods and/or all-American favorites such as apple pie.
  • Say a big “Thank you for your service” to every Veteran you meet.
  • At 11 a.m. on Veterans Day, observe a moment of silence to reflect on the commitment and sacrifices of military service.
older veterans of various military branches lined up for a photo

Texas-Located and Virtual “Veterans Month Events” from the Veterans Administration

To many, all of November is a time to honor Veterans. Here’s a sampler of events scheduled for the weekend after Veterans Day and the rest of the month.

Additional resources:

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