The U.S. Armed Forces have shaped our nation’s history and continue to protect its people and values. In recognition and appreciation of this great service to the country, Congress designated May as National Military Appreciation Month (NMAM). Throughout the month, a series of events honor the men and women serving in the military, veterans, and their families.[i]
May: Military Appreciation Month
May has been the official month to honor current and former service members since Senator John McCain introduced legislation for National Military Appreciation Month in 1999.[ii] Many of the events held to celebrate the military throughout the month are much older. Loyalty Day was established in 1921, Victory Day in 1945, and Armed Forces Day in 1941.[iii] Memorial Day is the oldest of the holidays, hailing from the years following the Civil War. Back then, it was called Decoration Day.[iv]
Military Appreciation Month Events
Service members, veterans, and their families are honored on six national observances in May.
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Sunday, May 1, 2017
Military Appreciation Month starts off with a pledge of loyalty to the U.S. and observance of the country’s heritage of freedom.
Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW)
Sunday, May 7-Saturday, May 13, 2017
During this week, service members are honored as the employees of local, county, state, and federal governments. It’s also a time to recognize the accomplishments and greatness of our government.
Monday, May 8, 2017
Also known as “Victory Europe Day,” “V-E Day,” and “VE Day,” May 8 marks the day in 1945 when the Germans surrendered to the Allies, putting an end to World War II in Europe.
Military Spouse Appreciation Day
Friday, May 12, 2017
Ceremonies and activities are held on this day to praise them and the important role they play in keeping our country safe.
Armed Forces Day
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Members of all branches of the Military are lauded on this day: Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Navy, and Marines.
Monday, May 29, 2017
This is a day to remember all of the men and women who have lost their lives serving and protecting our country.
Military Appreciation Month Deals
Businesses show thanks to service members throughout Military Appreciation Month by offering discounts.
Blue Star Museums
From Memorial Day through Labor Day, current and former military members and their families can visit any of the more than 2,000 museums across the country participating in the Blue Star program.
On Memorial Day weekend, all active-duty military, retired, veterans, reservists, National Guard, and their direct dependents can visit the world’s largest living history museum, Colonial Williamsburg, for free.[v][vi]
Tulsa Welding School
To help military members with the transition to civilian careers, Tulsa Welding School provides assistance with applications for military educational benefits. TWS also offers special military tuition rates for eligible service members, veterans, and their families who would like to receive welding training. These benefits can be enjoyed all year-round.
These are only a small sampling of the discounts available to current and former service members and their families during Military Appreciation Month and throughout the year. Additional discounts can be found at Military Discount Center.