Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Veterans Day is Wednesday. Here’s how you can celebrate…and there are freebies for vets, too

Iwo Jima Memorial in Williamsburg. (WYDaily file)
Iwo Jima Memorial in Williamsburg. (WYDaily file)

Veterans Day is a nationwide holiday which commemorates the men and women who served in the Armed Forces.

While the day is usually marked with some city offices closures, parades and social gatherings, because of the coronavirus pandemic some events throughout the Historic Triangle, greater Peninsula and Hampton Roads have been canceled.

Others have opted for virtual events or gatherings with social distancing measures and masks requirements.

See the list of commemorative events below.

  • Virtual Veterans Day Ceremony– Braxton-Perkins American Legion Post 25 will live stream the Victory Arch ceremony on Veterans Day via Facebook live at 11 a.m. You can also drive by the Victory Arch, 2501 West Ave. wave an American Flag and honk.
  • Colonial Williamsburg Virtual Veterans Day Salute 2020 – Starting 11 a.m. on Wednesday, veterans can join the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and community chapters of the Sons of the American Revolution, the Daughters of the American Revolution, and the American Friends of Lafayette in a national salute to military veterans . The virtual event will be hosted by General George Washington, as portrayed by Ron Carnegie, with musical accompaniment by the United States Air Force Heritage Brass.
  • The annual York County Historical Committee Veterans Day Ceremony will not be held this year. To honor our veterans, the committee has developed a website including a slide show featuring photos of veterans from years past, as well as patriotic programs.
  • Tune in to WYCG-TV (Cox 46, Verizon 38) throughout November to watch special programming honoring our nation’s veterans. Watch World War II soldiers recall their stories of battle. Tune in daily at 10 p.m. to see last year’s Veterans Day Ceremony at York Hall. For those without cable television, watch these programs live from their website.
  • Annual Grace Church Veterans Day Ceremony – The church is hosting a special Veteran’s Day Ceremony Wednesday at 10 a.m. The ceremony will be followed by the playing of “Taps” and a replacement of flags “with Honors” of the 96 known veterans from pre-Revolutionary War all the way to Korea and Vietnam. Attendance is restricted to the first 50 to 75 people who arrive.

In addition, veterans can receive freebies at the following locations in Hampton Roads. The free services are for veterans only unless otherwise noted:


  • Virginia War Museum: free admission for active duty, retired military, veterans and current or former National Guard and Reservists from Nov. 11-14.  
  • Colonial Williamsburg: From Wednesday to Sunday, Nov. 15, active duty military, reservists, retirees, veterans, National Guardsmen and their immediate dependents receive free admission.
  • National Park Free Entrance Day: On Wednesday, all National Park Service sites with an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone. View the list of parks here.

Restaurants/ local eats

  • Mission BBQ: Free sandwich 
  • 7-Eleven: Free coffee or Big Gulp. Sign up here.
  • Bar Louie: Free craft burger or flatbread of your choice for active or retired military. Dine in.
  • BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse: Free entrée up to $14.95 and free Dr. Pepper beverage for current and former military. Dine in.
  • Chili’s: Free meal for all veterans and active military. Dine in.
  • Red Lobster: Free appetizer or dessert for veterans, active duty and reservists. Dine In.
  • Red Robin- Free Tavern Double Burger with Steak Fries from Nov. 12-Nov. 30. Dine or takeout. Sign up here.


Julia Marsigliano
Julia Marsigliano
Julia Marsigliano is a multimedia reporter for WYDaily. She covers everything on the Peninsula from local government and law enforcement agencies to family-run businesses and weather updates. Before WYDaily, she covered Hampton and Newport News for WYDaily’s sister publication, HNNDaily before both publications merged in December 2018. Julia was born in Tokyo, Japan and moved to Long Island, New York in 2001. A true New Yorker, she loves pizza, bagels and good Chinese food. Send comments, tips and other tidbits to You can follow her on Twitter at @jmarsigliano

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