BREWER, Maine — Several area restaurants will honor military men and women on Veterans Day by providing them with free meals.
The free meals are just one way to show those who serve this country that they deserve to be celebrated, said Cindy Benson, dining room and banquet manger for the Muddy Rudder.
“It’s to honor our veterans and pay tribute to them for all their hard work,” she said Monday.
All veterans and those serving in the military will be given a free entree at the Muddy Rudder on Wednesday, she said.
“It’s a complimentary meal, an entree, a sandwich or whatever they like,” Benson said. “It’s all day.”
Everything on the menu — from lobster to the hanger steak covered in brandy and black peppercorn marinade — will be available, said general manager Tom Workman.
In the past two years, the Brewer restaurant has honored veterans in some way, but this year is different, he said.
“This is the first time we have stepped up,” Workman said. “This is how we want to thank our service veterans and active duty personnel. We’ve decided we really wanted to reach out and thank people.”
The Brewer restaurant is open 11 a.m.-10 p.m., and while a reservation is not needed for Wednesday, it is recommended.
“We’ve had a tremendous response,” Workman said.
The Muddy Rudder’s free entree for veterans also is available at the Yarmouth and Freeport restaurants.
Two Bangor restaurants — Applebee’s Bar & Grill and UNO Chicago Bar and Grill — also will honor military veterans with free meals Wednesday.
At Applebee’s, “We’re giving away six entrees that they can choose from,” manager Scott Wade said Monday.
Veterans who arrive in uniform or with a military or veterans group identification will get to choose from oriental chicken salad, a 7-ounce sirloin, chicken tenders platter, three-cheese chicken penne pasta, the fire pit bacon burger or fiesta lime chicken.
At UNO, veterans will get a free entree or individual pizza when another entree or pizza of equal or greater value is purchased.
“There’s no coupon necessary, just show up in uniform, or with a picture of you in uniform, or with a military or veteran’s ID,” the UNO Web site states. “Just show up! It will be our pleasure to serve you.”
Veterans also can get a free breakfast at the Bangor Area Breakfast Rotary Club’s annual pancake breakfast 7-11 a.m. Wednesday at Brewer Auditorium. The breakfast is $7 for adults, $4 for those under 12, and The Cole Land Transportation Museum will pay for the meals of veterans who show up with their veteran walking sticks.
Veterans typically start lining up for the Veterans Day parade between 9 and 9:30 a.m. in the Brewer Shopping Plaza. Wednesday’s parade starts on Wilson Street in Brewer at 10 a.m. and after crossing the Joshua Chamberlain Bridge and proceeding down Main Street in Bangor, disbands on Exchange Street.