OGDEN -- Ogden will host the fifth installment of what has become Utah's largest Veterans Day parade on Saturday, but that is only one of many observances and ceremonies planned this year.
Veterans will get free meals. Weber County soldiers who died during World War I will get new recognition, as will all veterans who were wounded in action.
The number "eleven" is even going to get tossed around a lot, both for historical reasons and because of a quirk of the calender.
Veterans Day was originally called Armistice Day to commemorate the end of World War I. That war stopped at 11 a.m. on Nov. 11, 1918, and was thus described as "the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month."
This year is 2011, so now the anniversary is officially 11 a.m. on 11/11/11.
As a result, many of this year's events kick off at 11 a.m. on the 11th, but not all. All events are open to the public:
This is the fifth year of the Ogden Veterans Day Parade, which kicks off at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 12.
The parade is organized by Ogden VFW Post 1481, which revived the parade after 50 years. The parade has grown to more than 80 units including military, antique equipment, marching bands and even Civil War re-enactors.
A flyover of Hill Air Force Base jets will kick off the parade. A patriotic celebration in Lindquist Field will be held after the parade.
The parade starts at 18th Street on Washington Boulevard, marches south to 24th Street, then turns west and goes to Lindquist Field.
This year's parade honors all Vietnam veterans, but State VFW Commander Dennis Howland said any veteran of any military service, wartime or peace, is welcome to march or ride in the parade.
"If you served honorably or serve now, you are a veteran," he said. "All are welcome in the parade and patriotic rally that follows at Lindquist Field."
All they have to do is show up at 18th Street before parade time and they're in. For more information, call Howland at 801-389-1893 or Robert Porter at 801-940-6487.
Go to the Ball
On the night of Nov. 11, VFW Post 1481 is hosting its annual Veterans Day Ball.
The event is at the Roy Elks Lodge, 1875 W. 5200 South, Roy. It begins at 7 p.m. and features big-band music by the Junction City Big Band. Admission is $25 a person. It is a formal dance, so your best dress, or Class A or Dress Blue uniforms, are requested.
Several national restaurant chains are providing free meals to any veteran or active-duty service member to thank them for their service. This list may not be complete, so look for ads by others:
* Nov. 8 -- Famous Dave's BBQ is offering free meals from a select menu to all veterans at any of its Utah locations, including the one in Layton. Bring your military ID, VA card or proof of service, such as discharge papers.
* Nov. 11 -- The Texas Roadhouse at all its Utah locations, including those in Ogden and Logan, will provide free lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., to any veteran or active-duty service member. Bring military ID or proof of service.
* Nov. 14 -- Golden Corral, all locations, will provide free dinner for any active duty service member or veteran between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. No ID or proof of service required.
An art show of veteran-related paintings by local artist Eugene Morris will be on display.
There are a variety of memorial observances around Top of Utah.
* Nov. 9-12 -- Harrison Regent retirement community, 4481 Harrison Blvd., Ogden, will hear several speakers and hold a fundraising buffet for Outward Bound for Veterans.
At 3 p.m. Nov. 9, James Thomas, USAF, will speak about "My Tour in Afghanistan." On Nov. 10 at 3 p.m., author Mike Ramsdell, former counterintelligence officer specializing in Russia and the Soviet Union, will discuss his book "A Train to Potevka."
On Nov. 12, the home will feature a prime rib buffet and big-band show at 5 p.m. Cost is $10 for the buffet.
* Nov. 10 -- The Brigham City Library hosts a program honoring veterans at 7 p.m. at 26 E. Forest St.
The program features historian Kathleen Bradford telling stories about veterans who fought in past and current wars. The program also includes Sherid Peterson, of Providence, sharing patriotic songs.
* Nov. 11 -- The George E. Wahlen Veterans Nursing Home, 1102 N. 1200 West, will hold a double ceremony commemorating Veterans Day and honoring Utah recipients of the Purple Heart.
The ceremonies begin at 9 a.m. Guest speaker is Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah. There will be a flag retirement ceremony by the Ogden VFW Post 1481.
Two new stone plaques with the names of 157 Utah recipients of the Purple Heart will be dedicated by the Utah Chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. The chapter has already erected four tablets at the Ogden home bearing 498 names.
* Nov. 11 -- At 11 a.m., the Weber Historical Foundation will rededicate Gold Star Avenue in the Ogden Cemetery.
The foundation replaced or repaired more than 50 individual bronze plaques installed along the avenue in 1923 to honor Weber County soldiers killed in World War I. It also restored large plaques, which contained the names of the dead, that guarded the entrance to Gold Star Avenue on 20th Street.
Col. Keith Knudson, commander of the 419th Fighter Wing at Hill Air Force Base, will speak.
* Nov. 11 -- Layton City Parks and Recreation will honor veterans in its annual commemoration ceremony beginning at 11 a.m. in the Central Davis Junior High gymnasium, 663 N. Church St.
Guest speakers include Col. Sarah Zabel, commander of the 75th Air Base Wing at Hill Air Force Base, and Layton Mayor Steve Curtis.
Admission is free. A light lunch for the veterans will be served following the program.
* Nov. 11 -- At noon, the American Legion Baker-Merrill Post 9 will hold a riverside ceremony on the Ogden River on the bridge adjacent to the Lorrin Farr Park stadium. The ceremony is to honor all service members killed at sea.
* Nov. 11 -- At 2:30 p.m., Baker-Merrill Post 9 will dedicate its new home at 845 W. 24th St. in Ogden.