While we've taken the eleventh day in November each year since 1954 to observe Veterans Day, the respect- and memory-filled occasion has its roots in the ending of the first World War.
How that will be marked in 2018, a hundred years after the fighting drew to a close remains to be seen, but the on-approach anniversary reminds us that pausing to pay our respects to those who have served is very much a time-honored rite for Americans.
And Americans will pause again, on Wednesday, Nov. 11, to say thank you. But the ceremonies are starting early in some quarters, and definitely in...
San Pedro... the home to the U.S.S. Iowa. A Saturday, Nov. 7 celebration included historic automobiles, '40s-style swing tunes, a helicopter landing, and more.
The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Library: The Annual Veterans Day Commemoration opens at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 11. "(A) program honoring all branches of our military" is part of the event, as well as live music. Following the presentation? A book signing for "Tough as They Come: A Memoir" by U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne.
Forest Lawn: The Veterans Day Ceremony & Job Fair "features patriotic music, static military displays, the Golden Stars Skydiving Team, free souvenirs..." and more. It's a free happening, and a venerable one, too; this is the 56th year for the ceremony. It's all happening from 11 to 2 on Wednesday, Nov. 11.
Griffith Park: Eager to run alongside those showing their support as well as those who have served? Make for the Crystal Springs area of the park on Saturday, Nov. 7 for the Inaugural Los Angeles National Veterans Day Run. There's a 5K and a one-miler for families, but you don't need to sign up if you'd like to stand along the route and lend some cheers.
Long Beach: The annual Veterans Day Parade begins at Houghton Park at 10 o'clock in the morning on Saturday, Nov. 7. Food, tunes, and activities for kids are part of the day. Also in Long Beach, but with a different date? The Aquarium of the Pacific is offering free admission to veterans, as well as military personnel, on Wednesday, Nov. 11.
San Fernando Valley: The S.F.V. Veterans Day Parade happens on Wednesday, Nov. 11 with a significant start time: 11:11 in the morning. It's a large-scale affair, with past years seeing "more than 120 veterans groups, numerous high school marching bands, and the San Diego-based Navy Band Southwest." Laurel Canyon Boulevard, beginning at San Fernando Mission Boulevard in Pacoima, is the main thoroughfare.
Palm Springs: One of the hallmarks of the annual procession through the downtown of the desert resort city is a concert following the parade with patriotic songs as the highlight. It's the 19th annual parade, and "Honoring All Who Served" is a theme shared with the Veteran's Administration.