Tampa thanks its veterans with free meals

November 17, 2012 by  

On November 11 – 12, restaurants throughout Tampa and its environs showed their appreciation for area veterans in a most welcome manner — with free meals.

Veterans Day in the U.S. is November 11, and began as a commemoration of the end of World War I, November 11, 1918, when Germany signed the Armistice. It was first known as Armistice Day but the designation was changed in 1954 to celebrate the service of all veterans – fallen and living alike.

Restaurants offering these deals to vets included Applebee’s, Golden Corral, Chili’s, and the Olive Garden, among others. These are national chains but not all locations participated, so area veterans were urged to contact their restaurant of choice to see if it was part of the celebration. Also, most of the meals were ‘dine-in’ only, and some venues had limited hours specified, so calling ahead was again important. In addition, some restaurants were offering free meals on November 11, while others waited until the following day to do so.

In addition to Tampa restaurants, other businesses here joined in to say thanks. Anheuser Busch, which owns SeaWorld and Busch Gardens, offered one single-day free admission for military members and up to three direct dependents, any time during 2012.

Finally, the nation’s national parks, which usually charge for admission, have several free days each year. This year, the parks were free for veterans from November 10 – 12.

All of these Tampa businesses and attractions are saying ‘thank you’ to the veterans who have sacrificed so much to keep the nation safe.