Armed Forces Day Celebration

Armed Forces Day Celebration
Something For Everyone
Central NV
Family Events

Nicknamed “America’s Patriotic Home,” Hawthorne houses the world’s largest ammunition depot. The town’s patriotism is always on display, but the main event is Mineral County’s annual Armed Forces Day celebration. Held the third weekend in May for more than 70 years, this multi-day event draws thousands for parades, carnival games, tournaments, a chili cook-off, and so much more.

With its thousands of artillery storage bunkers and a one-of-a-kind munitions museum, Hawthorne naturally knows how to give Armed Forces Day a full 21-gun salute. Nevada’s biggest patriotic party draws thousands, culminating with a star-spangled parade and ceremony honoring the U.S. military. 

The weekend kicks off with a parade featuring any and all types of transportation (ranging from quads and golf carts to scooters and even people on foot) decorated in their most patriotic garb. Taste-test your way through delicious chilis during the Nevada State Chili Championships, and bring the kids for carnival games, splash areas, and bounce houses. When the sun goes down Friday evening, fireworks will light up the sky.

Saturday’s parade is arguably the star of the show, which begins with a military flyover before weaving through downtown Hawthorne. Cecil the Sea Serpent is a local float favorite, so keep your eyes peeled! A car show, food vendors, live music, and various tournaments—including horseshoe, cornhole, arm wrestling, pong, and quarters—add to the fun all weekend long.

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