For the sixth consecutive year, local veteran organizations have teamed up to host the Baytown Area Veterans Appreciation Day.
From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on June 22, guests will gather at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 912 at 8204 N. Main St.
All veterans and their families are welcome to attend and receive a free barbecue lunch prepared by Lenox Catering. The public is also invited to attend.
While the event is to promote fellowship between veterans in the community, it’s also about showing community support for service members.
“Last year we served a little over 400 meals,” Jerry Johnson, coordinator of the event, said. “It seems to grow each year and has done well.”
The VFW will have the Missing Man Table Ceremony, which a special table reserved to honor missing military service members. Set for six, the empty chairs represent Americans who were or are missing from each of the services — Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard — and civilians, all with them in spirit.
Military activities such as a Flag Retirement Ceremony and Presentation of Colors will occur, as well as an open entry car show with People’s Choice and Commander’s Choice trophies.
In addition, the day will include raffles, prize giveaways, children’s activities,
vendors, music, a display of military vehicles provided by the Military Museum of Texas and a World War II military collection, provided by the Bay Area Military Museum.
A hand full of essays submitted for the Patriot’s Pen, a VFW-sponsored youth essay competition that allows students to write essays expressing their views on an annual patriotic theme, will be on display for guests to read.
A swearing-in ceremony for Navy and Army will also take place during the event.
Members of the VFW Post 912 also hope to have a Vietnam-era “Huey” helicopter at the event for display and rides, but arrangements are pending.
Besides VFW Post 912, the American Legion Post 323, Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 922 and Disabled American Veterans Chapter 126 are sponsoring the event.
For more information, contact Jerry Johnson at 832-984-5852 or VFW Post 912 at 281-421-1257.