The streets of Downtown Homestead transformed as service members and civilians connected during the fifth annual Homestead Military Appreciation Day. Attendees at the May 7th event enjoyed unique military displays, an epic obstacle course competition, two dramatic flyovers, and plenty of fun for the whole family with live music and food trucks.
The big draw at this year's event was once again the epic obstacle course designed to showcase the power of our military. Teams battled it out for the grand prize of $1200, sponsored by Value Place Lodging, and the honor of displaying the Homestead Air Reserve Base (HARB) Trophy, sponsored by South Dade News Leader. The grueling course, designed and sponsored by BattleFrog and Bolt Training, tested strength and endurance. Competitors fearlessly raced head-to-head as they hurdled obstacles, flipped tires, and sprinted to the finish line.
Dozens of food trucks and vendors were situated along the picturesque streets of Downtown Homestead, boats, aircrafts, weaponry, and other interactive displays were available to the public. Those in attendance enjoyed a variety of live music and performances, a K-9 demonstration by the Homestead Police Department, and a children’s area with games and activities. Plus, opening ceremonies featuring Homestead Mayor & Council, Military Personnel, and County & State Elected Officials. An exhibit of student art, organized by the South Dade Chamber of Commerce, expressing what freedom or honoring service means to them was also on display.
“When families connect great things happen,” said Councilman Stephen Shelley, who has been spearheading Military Appreciation Day since its inception five years ago. “That’s why I look forward to this event every year. Seeing our military and civilian families come together really shows you what the Homestead community is all about.”
Military Appreciation Day was the kick-off to Military Appreciation Month, in which all Homestead residents are encouraged to honor our military. In this spirit, the north side of the Seminole Theatre is adorned with a 40 foot long American Flag for the entire month. Krome Avenue is also decorated with flags and yellow ribbons to honor our service men and women and remind residents and visitors of their commitment to defending American freedom.
An additional perk of Military Appreciation Month is a host of discounts available to the military. Thanks to the South Dade Chamber of Commerce, many local businesses are offering deals and discounts all month long with a valid Military ID. Visit them online at www.southdadechamber.org for a complete listing.
The event was a community effort organized by the City of Homestead along with the Homestead Reserve Air Base, the Military Affairs Committee, the South Dade Chamber of Commerce, and Homestead Main Street.