Across Springfield Monday soldiers from Fort Leonard Wood will be saluted and pampered as part of “Home for the Holidays”, an event sponsored in part by the city of Springfield to give troops who can’t be with their families at Christmas a special day of honor.
While many of the events are closed to the general public, there is a welcome rally taking place at Bass Pro Shops on South Campbell starting at 10 a.m. where citizens of Springfield are being invited to make the soldiers feel welcome.
“I could not be more proud of our local businesses and nonprofit organizations today, and of course, the City of Springfield, for stepping up to show our service men and women a wonderful day today,” Mayor Ken McClure told OI. “We want to show them that we appreciate their service and since they cannot get home for the holidays, we will welcome them to our home. I hope they have a fun day and will remember that Springfield is a place they are always welcome.”
The patriotic rally will feature a brass band and a Mayoral proclamation declaring “Fort Leonard Wood Day” in the city of Springfield. Residents are encouraged to bring their American flags and other patriotic attire to make the soldiers feel welcome in Springfield.
The troops will then be given a private tour of the Wonders of Wildlife National Museum & Aquarium with a lunch in the White River Conference Room provided by Bass Pro.
After the lunch, the soldiers are given a variety of options in the Springfield area, from entertainment at Andy B’s and Urban Air Trampoline, or a showing of the modern holiday classic “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” at the historic Gillioz Theatre.
The evening ends with a “Taste of Springfield” dinner and show at Jordan Valley Ice Park.