Memorial Day: Top freebies for area military families by Nicole Paitsel, Savvy Shopper
Jennifer Borgstrom, founder of the website militarybridge.com, makes it her business to compile these deals on a daily basis. The National Guard wife launched her website in 2012 with a focus on Peninsula businesses. She has since expanded to include South Hampton Roads attractions and businesses.
She offered this list of top freebies in the area.
Colonial Williamsburg. The historic attraction will offer free admission to military members and their families during Memorial Day weekend.
From Friday, May 23, to Monday, May 26, active duty military, reservists, retirees, veterans and their families will receive free admission to the historic attraction.
Colonial Williamsburg also offers free admission to active duty, retired and veteran military members and their families over the Labor Day holiday weekend.
You can find more information about how to get the free tickets by calling 1-855-296-6627 or visiting colonialwilliamsburg.com.
Blue Star Museums program. Participating museums will offer free admission to all active duty military and their families from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Peninsula museums include the Peninsula Fine Arts Center in Newport News, the Hampton History Museum, the Dewitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum and Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum at Colonial Williamsburg, and the Muscarelle Museum of Art, among others around the state.
Find more information at bluestarfam.org.
National Park Service. The National Park Service offers a free annual pass to military members and their dependents. Local national parks include Jamestown National Historic Site and Colonial National Historical Park in Yorktown.
For more information, visit nps.gov/findapark/passes.htm.
Waves of Honor. This program offers any active duty military, reservist or National Guardsman one free admission each year to either Busch Gardens or WaterCountry USA (or a number of out-of-state theme parks). The one-time visit pass is valid for the military personnel and up to three direct dependents.
For more information, go to wavesofhonor.com.
Brides Across America. Through this national program, military brides can get a free wedding gown from a participating bridal shop near them. The Hampton Roads event takes place Monday, July 7 at Privee Bride of Ghent in Norfolk. The bride or her fiancé will need to have been deployed within the past five years or about to be deployed and have not had a formal wedding. For more information, visit bridesacrossamerica.com.
Sparetimes Bowling Center. The Hampton bowling alley offers free bowling and shoes from 9:30 p.m. to midnight every Wednesday night for military families. A military ID is required. Find more information at militarybridge.com.
Paitsel can be reached by phone at 757-247-4737.