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Plan ahead for Veterans Day events in Tampa Bay

A mix of virtual and socially-distanced events are happening on Wednesday.
Pictured between a row of America flags, the Presentation of Colors is performed by the MacDill Air Force Base Color Guard during the Veterans Day ceremony at the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center and National Cemetery at Bay Pines on Nov. 11, 2019, in St. Petersburg. This year's ceremony will be a virtual event over Facebook Live.
Pictured between a row of America flags, the Presentation of Colors is performed by the MacDill Air Force Base Color Guard during the Veterans Day ceremony at the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center and National Cemetery at Bay Pines on Nov. 11, 2019, in St. Petersburg. This year's ceremony will be a virtual event over Facebook Live. [ DIRK SHADD | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Nov. 7, 2020

Tampa Bay will celebrate those who have served in the military with a mix of virtual and socially distanced in-person options on Wednesday for Veterans Day.

The Bay Pines VA Healthcare System will host a virtual ceremony Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. over Facebook Live, featuring local Veterans Affairs leaders and with retired Marine Corps Maj. Gen. James S. “Hammer” Hartsell providing the keynote address.

Hartsell was appointed deputy executive director of the Florida Department of Veterans' Affairs in April 2019.

“We are steadfast in our commitment to providing outstanding health care and service to veterans, but it is also our duty to honor and pay tribute to them regardless of the current circumstances surrounding the pandemic,” said Paul Russo, director and chief executive of Bay Pines in a statement.

Saint Leo University’s Military & Family Club and Office of Military Affairs and Services are sponsoring their own Veterans Day virtual event, featuring guest speaker Army Sgt. 1st Class Elana Duffy, a Purple Heart recipient who suffered a traumatic brain injury in an explosion in Iraq in 2005. The online event starts at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 11. Those interested in attending can find the link on the university’s website under News and Events and on the Saint Leo University Worldwide Facebook account.

The veteran nonprofit Team Red, White & Blue will partner with Yuengling Brewery for a Workout of the Day event at Cigar City CrossFit in Tampa on Nov. 11, during which Yuengling will donate $50,000 to the nonprofit, which sponsors physical and social activities for veterans.

Participants will complete 11 rounds of five exercises, representing the branches of service, either in person and socially-distanced or virtually in their homes. Doors at Cigar City CrossFit will open at 4:30 p.m. with the workout starting at 6 p.m. according to a release. Those interested can register at teamrwb.org.

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