MURFREESBORO — Four days of activities that will honor veterans and active-duty military personnel will surround the Saturday, Nov. 9, MTSU Salute to Armed Services and Veterans Day events.
The 32nd annual Salute to Armed Services activities will coincide with the MT Blue Raiders 3 p.m. Conference USA football game against Florida International University in Floyd Stadium.
The veterans and military game-day activities include:
• 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Healthcare and benefits fair near stadium Gate 3. The fair is presented by U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs and Tennessee Valley Healthcare System;
• 11:30 a.m. — Veterans Memorial Service, memorial site outside Tom H. Jackson Building. As part of this event, there will be a dedication of a tree to women in military;
• 1 p.m. — Pregame Picnic for veterans and their family members at the Rose and Emmett Kennon Hall of Fame Building (tickets to the game for vets and family members are courtesy of State Farm and Barrett Firearms);
• 1:30 p.m. — Presentation of the Joe Nunley Award at Kennon Hall of Fame. The 24th and 2013 recipient is Col. Ed Smith of Brentwood, Tenn., who served in the U.S. Navy in World War II, U.S. Air Force for both the Korean War and Vietnam and who served 33 years altogether; and
3 p.m. — MTSU vs. Florida International game, with special halftime salute at approximately 4:30. The 337-member Band of Blue will perform official songs for all the branches of the military as the veterans and active-duty personnel go across Horace Jones Field. Former American Idol contestant Kristy Lee Cook will sing “God Bless America.” Before the game skydivers will parachute in with the game ball and Joe Wilson will sing the national anthem.
Seats for Soldiers ticket packages are available, and MTSU will match ticket-for-ticket. There are 80-, 40- and 20-ticket packages available. To purchase, call James Kentfield at 615-898-5261.
MT Athletics, the university’s military science program and the Blue Raider American Veterans Organization, or BRAVO, student group are teaming up and partnering with a number of other organizations to make the event extra special for the honorees.
A silent auction to benefit the new Tennessee Fisher House at Alvin C. York Medical Center will be held until 3 p.m. in the Kennon Hall of Fame.
Plenty of children’s activities will be on site, and Lightning’s second Punt, Pass and Kick competition for ages 5 to 12 will start at 10 a.m. at the Dean A. Hayes Track and Soccer Stadium.
People attending the game and military events are asked to bring a new toy for the Marines’ annual Toys for Tots drive.
For more information or to order tickets to the game, call 1-888-937-6878.
Other Veterans Week Activities at MTSU
• From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, BRAVO is holding a Veterans Job Fair in the Student Union Ballroom;
• Veterans, particularly women vets, will be recognized during the MTSU Lady Raiders vs. Tennessee Lady Volunteers basketball game, which is set for 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8, in Murphy Center. Tickets are $22. Fans can purchase and print their tickets online at goblueraiders.com or Ticketmaster.com. Tickets also can be purchased through all Ticketmaster outlets and the Blue Raider ticket office, located at Gate 1A of Floyd Stadium. The ticket office phone number is 615-898-5261 and is open 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
• At 8 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, BRAVO will hold the 2013 Warrior Challenge 5K/10K Race, which begins at the Military Memorial site outside the Tom H. Jackson Building. To register, visit http://warriorchallenge2013.com or register through Facebook by searching for “Warrior Challenge 2013;” and
• A Veterans Salute concert will be at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, in Hinton Music Hall inside the Wright Music Building. The concert features the MTSU Concert Choral, Middle Tennessee Choral Society and MTSU Faculty Brass Quintet.
For more information about both the Veterans Job Fair and Warrior Challenge, call MTSU sophomore Malcolm Stallard at1-877-837-4635 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.