4 ways to commemorate Veterans Day in Chattanooga, TN

In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower changed the name to “Veterans Day” to honor all veterans, not just those who served in WWI. | Pexels

Today is Veterans Day — the day set aside to honor the brave men + women who have fought to protect our country.

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It’s not to be confused with Memorial Day, which is set aside to honor those who have died while serving in the military. 

We’ve got interesting details about the federal holiday + four ways to commemorate the day locally. 👇

🇺🇸 Visit the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park 

Lookout Mountain’s Point Park, which is a part of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, is free to visit all day and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. rangers will be on site to answer questions + provide information. 

ProTip: Ask about the Civil War battles fought on Lookout Mountain 157 years ago this month

🇺🇸 Visit the Charles H. Coolidge National Medal of Honor Heritage Center 

  • The downtown museum memorializes the nation’s highest military award for valor and educates the community about the six character traits associated with those who get National Medals of Honor. 
  • The museum is offering free admission to all veterans through Nov. 15. 
  • Hours: Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun., 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

🇺🇸 Give blood 

Two Southeast blood centers, Blood Assurance + The Blood Connection, recently announced that they are having a competition to increase blood donations in honor of veterans called “Give Because They Gave First.” The promotion will run Nov. 9-11 and will benefit the BCA special forces Wounded Warrior Fund. (Chattanoogan.com)

🇺🇸 Get local deals

Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar | Wed., Nov. 11 | 11 a.m.-4 p.m. |1924 Gunbarrel Road | Veterans can receive a free All American Burger with Cheese at all locations with proof of service. Available for in-person service only. 🍔

Buffalo Wild Wings | Nov. 11 | 11 a.m.-12 a.m. | All Buffalo Wild Wings locations | Veterans and active-duty military can get a free order of 10 boneless wings + fries.

Drake’s | Wed., Nov. 11 | 11 a.m.-11 p.m. | Drake’s Chattanooga, 7338 McCutcheon Road | All veterans and active duty military with proof of service will receive a complimentary meal at Drake’s Chattanooga on Veterans Day. 🥗

Chicken Salad Chick | Nov. 11 | Hours vary | All Chicken Salad Chick locations | All veterans and active-duty military will receive a free Chick Special + regular drink. 🥐

Cracker Barrel | Nov. 11 | 7 a.m.-9 p.m. | All Cracker Barrel locations | Veterans will get a complimentary slice of coca-cola cake at any Cracker Barrel location.

Krispy Kreme | Nov. 11 | Open 24 hours | Krispy Kreme, 5609 Brainerd Rd. | Veterans can get a free donut and their choice of coffee. 🍩

Mission BBQ | Nov. 11 | 11 a.m.-9 p.m. | Mission BBQ, 1926 Gunbarrel Rd. | Veterans and active-duty military will receive a free sandwich + cake. If you’re there at noon, you can hear the daily singing of the national anthem. 

Rodizio Grill | Nov. 11 | 11 a.m.-9 p.m. | Downtown Rodizio Grill location, 439 Broad St. | Veterans and active-duty military will receive a Full Rodizio with the purchase of a Full-Rodizio meal. Reserve at 423-777-4999.

The Caverns | Nov. 11-15 | Times vary | | 555 Charlie Roberts Road, Pelham TN | On Nov. 11, veterans with a military ID or veterans ID card can get a free guided cave tour. And vets who book a guided cave tour through Nov. 15 can get 20% off using the promo code HEROESCAVE.

Fast Facts 

  • The holiday (originally called “Armistice Day”) was first observed on the first anniversary of the end of WWI (Nov. 11, 1919). 
  • In 1926, Congress passed a resolution for an annual observance of the day, but it wasn’t until 1938 that the day officially became a national holiday.
  • In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower changed the name to “Veterans Day” to honor all veterans, not just those who served in WWI.
  • 18.2 million veterans alive today have served in 1+ war as of 2018.
  • Nine percent of all veterans are women.
  • About 325,000 of the Americans who fought in WWII are still alive as of 2020
  • Seven million vets served during the Vietnam War.
  • Two million veterans served in the Korean War. (Source: History.com

More resources

    • More details about deals here and here
    • Details about the Chattanooga Vet Center here
    • To connect with the City of Chattanooga’s support of veterans, click here.
    • The Department of Veterans Affairs is highlighting veterans on its Instagram page
    • For information about government services for veterans in Tennessee, click here
    • Connect with the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs Facebook page here.