Where would we be without our military veterans? These are the people who have sacrificed so that we don’t have to go without. Who have left their families so we can be with ours. Who put in sleepless nights so we can sleep in peace. They are the reason America is the great country she is. They are everyday heroes whom we can never thank enough. They are friends, family and loved ones. And they are always welcome in Branson.
Branson, Missouri, is recognized not only as the Live Entertainment Capitol of the Midwest, but also as one of the most patriotic Midwestern town you will ever find. In fact, Branson is known as the Veteran Capitol of the Nation. Patriotism is a matter of pride in Branson – homes and businesses proudly display the American flag, veterans discounts are offered at many of the area shows and attractions, and of course there are the events held annually, like hosting the Traveling Vietnam Wall and the Veteran’s Day Parade. The whole community gets behind these events, so that those who have paid the price know that they are appreciated, and loved.
A big role in Branson veterans appreciation is played by the Branson Veteran Task Force, and Branson Veterans Events and Reunions Inc., both not for profit organizations who seek to honor veterans through patriotic events, military reunions, and community functions. The Branson Veterans Task Force offers membership to those interested in assisting veterans and helping with their needs; they also help circulate a veterans email newsletter. Branson Veterans Events and Reunions Inc. keeps veterans abreast of local events happening in the area, provides sponsorship information to the community, and also provides veterans with a list of businesses that offer special discounts.
Another big part of the Branson veterans support is the Veterans Memorial Garden, located at the intersection of Highway 76 and Roark Valley Road. The garden was established in 2008 by a nonprofit gardening group who wanted a unique way to say ‘Thank You.’ The Memorial Garden features flowering trees, colorful shrubs, and plants and flowers of all kinds set into the Branson hillside. This beautiful garden has brought many a smile to a visitor’s face; if you’d like to consider being a volunteer for the Veterans Memorial Garden, you can find more information on their website, www.veteransmemorialgarden.com.
These are just a few of the ways that Branson veterans, both visiting and local, are honored for their service by the community. Be sure to thank a military veteran when you see them – they are the reason we can be proud to call the United States of America home.