Veterans Day will be marked in Los Angeles County Saturday by parades in the San Fernando Valley and Long Beach, a music festival at the Port of Los Angeles and celebrations at Veterans Affairs campuses in West Los Angeles and Long Beach.
The 14th annual San Fernando Valley Veterans Day Parade will begin at 11:11 a.m. at the corner of Laurel Canyon Boulevard and San Fernando Mission Boulevard in Mission Hills and proceed south on Laurel Canyon Boulevard for 1.1 miles.
The time corresponds with the date in 1918 of the armistice that ended World War I.
An opening ceremony will be held at 10:35 a.m. at the intersection of Brand Boulevard and Laurel Canyon Boulevard.
Parade rules limit participation to veterans, Marines, soldiers, sailors, Air Force and Coast Guard personnel, high school bands, ROTC units and Naval Sea Cadets.
More than 100 veterans groups will participate in the parade, along with Alvin I. Solomon, a U.S. Army private in World War II who will turn 101 Dec. 23, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserve.
A squadron of Condor planes used in World War II training missions will fly in formation over the parade route from 11:35-11:40 a.m.
The grand marshal will be the Moorpark-based veterans advocacy group American Veterans United. The services it provides include assisting surviving spouses obtain benefits, dependents receive education benefits and financial hardship assistance to veterans.
The Long Beach parade will begin at 10 a.m. at South Street and Elm Avenue. It will proceed east on South Street to Atlantic Avenue, then north on Atlantic Avenue to Harding Street.
A Veterans Day celebration will be held from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on Atlantic Avenue from South Street. It will include a career expo for veterans, live tribute concert, “ninja-style” obstacle course, a beer garden, kids zone,
The second annual Veterans Day Music Festival will be held from 11 a.m.- 4 p.m. in front of the Battleship Iowa, which is docked at the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro.
An opening ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. with Rep. Nanette Diaz Barragan, D-San Pedro, and Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino.
Health and wellness checks will be offered along with free self-guided tours of the battleship for veterans and current service members with valid military identification. A discounted $11 admission for tours is available for family and friends accompanying veterans and service members.
The second annual Veterans Day Celebration at the Veterans Affairs West Los Angeles Campus will begin with a ceremony at the Los Angeles National Cemetery from 10-11:15 a.m. A resource fair and car show will be held from 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Jackie Robinson Stadium.
The seventh annual Veterans Day Welcome Home Celebration at the Veterans Affairs Long Beach Campus will be held from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and include live entertainment and games for the entire family.
Pasadena’s Veterans Day commemoration will begin at 10:30 a.m. in front of Pasadena City Hall. The theme will be “Pasadena Salutes Our Veterans.” It will conclude at 11 a.m. with a flyover of World War II planes.
Malibu’s 18th annual Veterans Day Public Ceremony will be held from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Malibu City Hall’s Civic Theater.
The theme will be “Honoring Veterans Who Continue To Serve,” with veterans giving accounts of their experiences serving their nation and community. The event will also include musical performances and dancers.
All current and former members of the military are invited to arrive from 10-10:30 a.m. to socialize, enjoy coffee and bagels and be seated in a reserved section.
West Hollywood’s ceremony honoring veterans will begin at 11 a.m. at the Sal Guarriello Veterans Memorial on Santa Monica Boulevard at Holloway Drive.
Baldwin Park’s 26th annual Veterans Day ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. at Morgan Park and be highlighted by a parachute demonstration by the Golden Stars Skydiving Team.
The Redondo Beach Veterans Day ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. at Veterans Park. It will include reflection and remembrance and music.
The keynote speech will be delivered by U.S. Army Lt. Col. Mark D. Ripley, the commander of the Los Angeles Recruiting Battalion.
In his Veterans Day proclamation, President Donald Trump said, “Our veterans represent the very best of America. They have bravely answered the call to serve in the finest military force in the world, and they have earned the dignity that comes with wearing the uniform and defending our great flag.”
Trump also proclaimed November to be National Veterans and Military Families Month to honor the contributions made by American service members, their families and their loved ones.
Veterans Affairs will hold events throughout the month, including the inaugural South Los Angeles Veterans Day Block Party from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday at Victory Outreach Church.
The party will include a job fair and resource fair for black and Latino veterans, entertainment, an appearance by the Laker Girls and free food for the first 400 veterans.
Veterans Day has its roots in a proclamation issued by President Woodrow Wilson in November 1919, a year after World War I ended, designating Nov. 11 as Armistice Day. States soon starting declaring Nov. 11 a legal holiday. Congress made it a federal holiday in 1938, dedicated to the cause of world peace.
In 1954, following World War II and the Korean War, Congress, at the urging of veterans service organizations, passed a law renaming Armistice Day Veterans Day. From 1971-1977, Veterans Day was held in late October. A 1975 law returned it to Nov. 11, beginning in 1978.
—City News Service
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