10 Patriotic Places to Observe Veterans Day

Honor the men and women of America's armed forces Nov. 11 at these special sites across the nation.

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October 30, 2019

Photo By: steve larese

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Photo By: Maj. Raymond Geoffroy

Photo By: National WWI Museum and Memorial

Photo By: Steve Larese

Photo By: Beverly & Pack, flickr

National World War II Museum, New Orleans, Louisiana

The Smithsonian-affiliated National World War II Museum details the events and stories of the men and women who fought during the Second World War. Personal testimonies and artifacts including aircraft such as a B-17 Flying Fortress bomber are displayed, and the war’s theaters of engagement, strategies and costs are detailed throughout the 32,000-square-foot museum. In 2020 the Liberation Pavilion opens and will explore the "joys, costs, and meaning of liberation and freedom" and World War II’s continuing affects on the world today. World War II veterans are always admitted free to the museum, and all veterans may visit free of charge on Veterans Day. Newly opened is the 1940s-themed Higgins Hotel New Orleans, a Curio Collection by Hilton.

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National Museum of the Marine Corps, Triangle, Virginia

Located on 135-acres next to the Marine Corps Base at Quantico, the National Museum of the Marine Corps honors the history and explains the role of the U.S. Marine Corps. Exhibits take visitors through the Marine Corps creation on Nov. 10, 1775 through the Vietnam War. A new 115,000-square-foot exhibit hall documents the Marine Corps mission from 1976 through today. Annually on Nov. 10 the Marine Corps founding is celebrated, and Nov. 11 sees Veterans Day observances.

National Museum of the United States Air Force, Dayton, Ohio

Located at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, the National Museum of the United States Air Force houses more than 360 types of aircraft, missiles and rockets spanning the dawn of aviation through the Air Force’s creation in 1947 to the role it plays today in national defense and scientific exploration. Air Force veterans are on hand on Veterans Day during the museum’s Plane Talk series to discuss their careers, experiences and aircraft.

National Museum of the United States Navy, Washington, D.C.

The National Museum of the United States Navy is free and open to the public at the Washington Navy Yard. Make sure to have your driver’s license to enter the base. Naval artillery, a replica battleship bridge, submarine conning towers, items from past conflicts including the Revolutionary War and even a Japanese kamikaze training glider are displayed. Civilians must pass a quick background check before entering the base, and the museum is only open during the week.

National Infantry Museum & Soldier Center, Columbus, Georgia

Opened in 2009, the National Infantry Museum & Soldier Center honors the men and women of the US Army. Interactive displays and thousands of artifacts are displayed and explained, along with the role and duties of infantry personnel. On Veterans Day, ceremonies begin at 10 a.m., with a moment of silence at 11 a.m.

National World War I Museum, Kansas City, Missouri

In 2006 the National World War I Museum and Memorial opened, joining the Liberty Tower that was dedicated in 1921. Exhibitions and collections tell the story of the Great War, its horrific human toll and its impact on the world still felt today. Veterans Day marks the end of World War I, when the guns finally stopped on Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. Enjoy free general admission for active duty military/veterans and half-price general admission for the general public Veterans Day weekend. The museum hosts family-friendly activities throughout the weekend and debuts the new exhibition The Vietnam War: 1945–1975. Honor veterans on Monday, Nov. 11 as the Museum and Memorial host a free public ceremony at 10 a.m. featuring dignitaries, inspiring musical performances and a keynote address from Dr. Pellom McDaniels, former Kansas City Chiefs star and current Curator of the African-American Collections at the Rose Library at Emory University.

National Naval Aviation Museum, Pensacola, Florida

The National Naval Aviation Museum is the world’s largest naval aviation museum. Explore naval aviation’s rich history and see more than 150 restored aircraft representing Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard aviation, as well as flight simulators, uniforms and other exhibits. Historic and one-of-a-kind aircraft are displayed both inside the museum’s nearly 350,000 square feet of exhibit space and outside on its 37-acre grounds.

National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Albuquerque's National Museum of Nuclear Science & History details the development of the world's first atomic weapon in New Mexico, its use during World War II and its impact since. Exhibits including nuclear weapon casings explain the science and culture surrounding nuclear weapons and energy, from propaganda and Cold War fears to medical breakthroughs. The role of the armed forces during the tense Cold War is highlighted. Admission is free for active duty personnel and veterans on Veterans Day.

National Museum of the Pacific War, Fredericksburg, Texas

The National Museum of the Pacific War honors veterans Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. in its Memorial Courtyard. The Fredericksburg Chorale will perform and Texas State Senator Dawn Buckingham will deliver the keynote address. This event is free, and veterans receive free admission to the museum. The National Museum of the Pacific War details the lead up to and the events in World War II’s Pacific Theater. Hundreds of displays include equipment and items donated by both American and Japanese veterans. Fredericksburg, Texas was chosen for the museum as it’s the hometown of Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet who commanded all Allied air, sea and land forces in the Pacific Theater.

Arlington National Cemetery

Arlington National Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 300,000 active-duty members of the US armed forces. In addition to these rows of white marble headstones, the 624-acre grounds are home to memorials including the Tomb of the Unknowns, as well as the graves of two US presidents. On Veterans Day, the Memorial Amphitheater is the site of day-long ceremonies that typically attract some 5,000 people.

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