Reflection, memory, and words of hope and honor play a focal point in each Veterans Day, and while the speeches and stirring remembrances might alter from year to year, the message does not: thank you.
We pause to share our gratitude for those who served each November, and several locations around Southern California will host ceremonies, tours, and quiet moments, for veterans, their loved ones, and those who want to also take time to reflect.
The reflection can happen this Tuesday, Nov. 11 aboard...
THE U.S.S. IOWA: The "battleship of presidents" just wrapped a full weekend of Veteran's Appreciation activities, from a vintage military auto show to a 5K, but Nov. 11 will be very much about a morning memorial. Be on the fantail of the San Pedro-based battleship at 9 a.m. for the memorial, and stay for a tour. "All Active Duty, Retired, and Military reservists (with ID) will receive FREE tours of the historic ship all day," says the IOWA's Facebook page, and there are ticket discounts for friends and family joining the veterans. Information? It's here.
THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY VETERANS DAY PARADE: The start time for this annual procession is easy to remember -- 11:11 a.m. -- and the motto, "Honoring Those Who Serve Past and Present" is hard to forget. "(M)ore than 120 veterans groups" plus the San Diego Navy Band Southwest will walk Laurel Canyon Boulevard starting at San Fernando Mission Boulevard.
LOS ANGELES NATIONAL CEMETERY: While no ceremony is scheduled for Nov. 11, family will be visiting the grounds throughout the day to remember their loved ones. There are a number of national cemeteries throughout the state, and the Golden Gate National Cemetery and Riverside National Cemetery will both hold morning ceremonies.
CALIFORNIA STATE PARKS: If you're a veteran and desire to spend Nov. 11 in a natural setting, from a park at the beach to a park on a mountaintop, you'll receive a free day-use pass on Veterans Day. This benefit extends to active duty military and to Memorial Day state park visits as well.
SPACE SHUTTLE ENDEAVOUR: While there are no ceremonies scheduled alongside the space shuttle inside the California Science Center, there are specially timed tickets available for Nov. 11, which suggests that many people looking to observe Veterans Day in a place that lauds our country's space program will be making for the Exposition Park institution. Want to see the shuttle on Veterans Day? Secure your free (with a small fee) ticket.