History of Veterans Day

In 1926, seven years after President Woodrow Wilson declared November 11, 1919 as the country’s first Armistice Day, signaling the end of World War I, the United States Congress asked current President Calvin Coolidge to honor November 11 with proper celebrations.

In the late 1930s, there was a strong campaign to turn November 11 Armistice Day into a National Holiday honoring all veterans, not just those who served in World War I.

How to Celebrate Veterans Day

If you’re a Veteran, then one of the best ways to honor your time served along with honoring other brave Veterans is to wear all of your military decorations and medals. The Department of Veterans Affairs encourages all Veterans do this because it’s a great way to show your on-going patriotism and national pride. Wear your medals out with pride and let them speak for your time in the service.

Though it’s a little known tradition, but eating a ravioli dinner on Veterans Day is a common way to celebrate the day. Dating back nearly 90 years, President Woodrow Wilson invited several thousand veterans to eat ravioli at the White House because he understood that many service members craved a home cooked meal.

So, consider taking a ravioli dinner over to your local VA health center, and share a small meal with those who sacrificed for our country. Or, consider preparing ravioli meal for your family and talk with your children about the importance of Veterans Day.

Other great ways to celebrate Veterans Day this year include:

  • Write a letter to a soldier
  • Lay a wreath or flowers on military monuments
  • Fly an American Flag at your house
  • Donate money, items or time to a Veterans’ organization
  • Wear a poppy pin on your lapel

Veterans Day Discounts

Many retail and restaurant chains offer a Veterans Day discount on goods and services. In the past, such companies like Applebee’s, Home Depot and Lowe’s offer a discount on Veterans Day and often continuing through the weekend.

Another great way to celebrate Veterans Day is a trip to one of our National Parks. This year, the National Park Service is offering free admission to all parks from November 11 -13.