According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Day was first declared in 1954 by President Dwight Eisenhower to honor all soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines who served the nation. San Diego alone is home to more than 260,000 veterans and has the second largest veteran population in the state, which makes every Veteran’s Day in San Diego incredibly momentous. Join the rest of the country in honoring our nation’s vets at these San Diego Veteran’s Day events on Wednesday, November 11.
Annual San Diego Veteran’s Day Parade
11am – 1:30pm
The parade theme this year will be “70th Anniversary of World War II and America’s Greatest Generation.” The Veterans Day Parade will begin at Harbor Drive & West Broadway, where it will travel down Harbor Drive from Grape to Pacific Coast Highway and will terminate just north of Harbor Drive on Pacific Coast Highway (next to the Navy Parking lot). Please note that there will be no parking and no thru-traffic along Harbor Drive during the parade.
Mt. Soledad Veterans’ Ceremony
2pm – 3pm
Head to the Mt. Soledad National Veterans’ Memorial for an hourlong celebration. First will be a Special Plaque Presentation honoring Colonel Jay Vargas, USMC, Recipient of the Medal of Honor – the nation’s highest decoration for military valor – for his service during the Vietnam War. This year’s Keynote Speaker will be former California Governor Pete Wilson, who also served as a US Senator, the Mayor of San Diego, California Assemblyman, and Marine. The Memorial is located at 6905 La Jolla Scenic Drive South, La Jolla 92037.
Veteran’s Day on the USS Midway
10am – 4pm
All military veterans will enjoy free admission to the USS Midway on November 11! Come and say “thank you” to our military veterans with food, live entertainment, KidzZone, vintage warplane flybys, activities, prizes, and more. From 10am-3pm, there will be a San Diego Blood Bank Blood Drive, then at 11am the official Veteran’s Day Parade begins. The USS Midway is located at 910 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101.
NBC 7’s “Salute to Service” Festival
12pm – 4pm
Presented by GEICO Military, the Salute to Service Festival will be held in conjunction with Veteran’s Day festivities on the USS Midway. Celebrate America’s veterans with live music from Southbound Johnny, one of San Diego’s most popular country bands; free food and drink available on board the USS Midway; kids’ activities including face painting, balloon animals, and a bouncy house; and exciting raffle prizes.
Coronado: “Take a Veteran to School Day”
More than 40 veterans will visit Coronado Middle School to share their stories as part of “Take a Veteran to School Day.” The program will begin at 7:20am with the arrival of the veterans for a breakfast at the middle school. Then they and students will head over to the Coronado High School football field for a 9:30 a.m. tribute that will include a color guard, speeches and a parachute jump with a large U.S. flag.
Solana Beach: Memorial Ceremony
The city of Solana Beach will host a ceremony with a “Feathers From Heaven” doves release from 11 a.m. to noon Wednesday at La Colonia Community Center, 715 Valley Ave. The Camp Pendleton Young Marines will serve as honor guard and the Santa Fe Christian School Band will perform patriotic songs. Lt. Col. Scott Hall will speak about the new Veterans Honor Courtyard.
Temecula: “Patriotic Salute to Veterans”
The city of Temecula and the Inland Valley Symphony will host the annual “Patriotic Salute to Veterans” from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Civic Center, 41000 Main St. There will be a presentation of military banners and a concert of patriotic and Broadway musical songs performed by the 55-piece symphony led by Maestro John Mario, musical director and conductor.
FREE MEAL: Denny’s invites active, inactive and retired military personnel (with a valid I.D.) to stop by participating Denny’s restaurants for a free Build Your Own Grand Slam from 5am-noon on Wednesday!
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