CRESTVIEW — The 7th Annual Military Appreciation Recognition Celebration is Saturday.
The Armed Forces Day observance will feature free food and entertainment, and the event planning committee will recognize veterans and active duty service members, according to MARC President Bob Lynn.
"We like to express our thankfulness for the sacrifices that the military services members and their families have endured in order to protect our freedom," he said.
Free hamburgers, hotdogs, bratwursts and barbecue will be available, and leftover food will benefit Sharing and Caring in Crestview, Lynn said. In addition, local Boy Scout troops will cook treats, a men's ensemble and bluegrass group will provide entertainment, and the Shoal River Mustang Club will present a car show.
"America's White Table," inspired by the Margot Theis Raven book, will be displayed to honor the fallen, and resident Liz Westby will explain its symbolism.
Children and adults can attempt to rock climb on a wall set up by the National Guard, and the Emerald Coast Young Marines will promote several of their cadets.
Among several scheduled activities, the military displays are a top draw, Lynn said.
"The U.S. Coast Guard will have a rescue boat on display and a rescue helicopter will do a flyover and will land nearby," he said. And local Explosive Ordnance Disposal technicians will display remote-controlled EOD robots.
In addition to the MARC committee's yearlong planning, Lynn said the event would not be possible without numerous businesses and organizations that support the celebration.
WANT TO GO?
WHAT: Military Appreciation Recognition Celebration
WHEN: Opening ceremony is at 11 a.m. Saturday
WHERE: Old Spanish Trail Park on Stillwell Boulevard, Crestview
NOTES: Free; attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets.