Local Veterans Day events slated

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MANISTEE COUNTY — Many local groups and organizations are banding together on Nov. 11 to honor veterans of the U.S. armed forces.

In observation of Veterans Day, there are a variety of upcoming events throughout the county that will be held to thank troops who are currently serving or who have served in the past.

American Legion Post No. 10 in Manistee will host a Veterans Day open house beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday at their 10 Mason St. post.

There will be a commemoration ceremony to start the day, followed by a luncheon at 11:30 a.m. There is a suggested donation, and the public is encouraged to attend.

Veterans will eat free at the Veterans Dinner hosted by the VFW Walsh Post No. 4499.

The dinner, to honor those who have or are serving, will be held from 4:30-7 p.m. on Saturday at the post, located at 1211 28th St. in Manistee.

The menu will include pork loin, mashed potatoes, vegetables, rolls and dessert.

Margaret "Peaches" Sanovice rang the bell 11 times on the 11th day of the 11th month to honor veterans during the American Legion Post No. 10's Veterans Day ceremony in 2017.  (News Advocate file photo)

Margaret “Peaches” Sanovice rang the bell 11 times on the 11th day of the 11th month to honor veterans during the American Legion Post No. 10’s Veterans Day ceremony in 2017. (News Advocate file photo)

There is a charge for all non-veteran guests.

The Manistee Elks annual Veterans Day dinner will honor the Catholic War veterans at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Winning tickets for the Elks Raffle will be drawn after dinner, with music by Jeri and Tony following around 8 p.m.

For more information or to make reservations, contact the Lodge at (231) 723-2060.

The Bear Creek VFW Post No. 6333 will host a pork dinner from 4-6 p.m. on Saturday, at 13300 Nine Mile Road in Kaleva.

The dinner is free for all veterans and a free will donation for all others.

Local organizations are not the only groups getting involved.

Wahr Hardware in Manistee will be hosting a soup lunch from noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday, which is free for all to attend.

Don Wahr, owner, said the event is hosted alongside the “In Their Shoes” Homelessness and Poverty Awareness week in Manistee but also brings to light that many veterans are homeless.

“What you hate to see is people who have served our country in that situation. In a country this rich, it’s a shame,” he said.

“It is open for all to attend, and brings awareness to an issue that’s in our community,” said Wahr. “We’re happy to be part of this event.”

In honor of Veteran’s Day, the Michigan 2nd Cavalry Civil War reenactors will be returning to the Free Soil area on Sunday.

There will be a presentation of the American flag, and patriotic music during mass including Taps.

The ceremony will begin at 8 a.m. at St. Bernard Church (5734 W 10 1/2 Mile Rd) in Irons and again at 10 a.m. at St. John Cantius Church (2845 E. Michigan St.) in Free Soil.

There are several events taking place in Benzie County as well, including:

•Benzie County Veterans’ Memorial

The Benzie County Office of Veteran’s Affairs will be hosting a service at the Benzie County Veteran’s Memorial in Benzonia’s Memorial Park at 1 p.m. on Veterans Day (Sunday). There is no set agenda, but there will be cannon fire, and the American Legion Post No. 221 Honor Guard will fire a 21 gun salute.

Visitors will be able to see the progress made on the construction of a pavilion at the memorial, which began recently thanks to a $62,000 grant from the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians.

•National Lakeshore

The Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore) will be fee-free on Sunday, in honor of Veterans Day.

Many of the popular attractions at the National Lakeshore remain open during this time of year, including the Philip A. Hart Visitor Center, Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive, Dune Climb and a hundred miles of hiking trails.

The campgrounds at Platte River and D. H. Day also remain open, though the fee waiver does not apply to camping fees at the National Lakeshore.

The Departments of the Interior and Agriculture began this annual fee waiver 12 years ago on Veterans Day.

The fee waiver applies to entrance and/or standard amenity fees at public recreation lands managed by the National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, and U.S. Forest Service across the country.

Active duty members of the U.S. military and their dependents can also pick up a free Military Pass, which provides free entry to all 418 national parks for one year. Active duty members of the U.S. military must show a current, valid military identification card (CAC card), and dependents of active duty military must show a current, valid dependent identification card (DD Form 1173) to obtain their pass. More information is available at www.nps.gov/findapark/passes.htm.

•The Gathering Place

The Gathering Place also will be honoring veterans with a small ceremony at 11:20 a.m. on Monday at the Gathering Place’s Honor location.

Veterans will be invited to a free lunch after the ceremony.

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