Free vacations, retreats and opportunities for military veterans and their families
Attractions (free admission):
Balboa park (San Diego, CA)
Busch Gardens, Sea World, Sesame Place, Aquatica, Adventure Island,
Water Country USA
Callaway Gardens (Georgia)
George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
New York Aquarium
San Diego Zoo
Shedd Aquarium (Chilcago, IL)
World of Coca-Cola (Atlanta, GA)
Active Heroes Military Family Retreat Center (Shepherdsville, KY)
The Active Heroes Retreat Center is the first retreat in America designed by military families to help military families heal! The retreat center is located in Shepherdsville, KY and open to military families free of charge. Visitors can schedule a day to visit the grounds during hours of staffing, schedule a cabin vacation or sign up for selected camping dates with cookouts.
Activities currently include:
- Camping w/cookouts – Specific dates available
Armed Services YMCA - Camp Pendleton, CA Project Liberty Call
Project Liberty Call distributes tickets and other special event opportunities that are provided by the community throughout the year to all active duty and military families as available. Ticket distributions are announced on the Armed Services YMCA Facebook.
Armed Services YMCA - Operation Outdoors
The Armed Services YMCA offers junior enlisted families the chance to participate in family, youth, and teen camps year-round at our 34 branches and affiliate locations through our Operation Outdoors program. Operation Outdoors encourages healthy living as part of our core mission of making military life easier. In partnership with sponsors like Newman’s Own Foundation, ASYMCA camps and retreats provide much needed recreational and bonding opportunities for military children and families who have experienced multiple deployments.
The goal of Operation Outdoors is to provide a fun, educational and safe outdoor experience for military children and families to bond, make new friends and build their support networks by connecting with others who have similar backgrounds and experiences as members of the military community.
BandBs for Vets (Veterans Day Bed & Breakfasts)
Innkeepers want to say thank you to those who’ve served their country by inviting veterans to stay in a B&B on Veterans Day. Inns and B&Bs throughout North America will open their doors to active and retired military and vets and one guest by offering a free room to those who’ve served in the military.
Band of Runners Trail Camp - November 10-12, 2017 (Fincastle, VA)
Elite & long-time trail runners, coaches & race directors from across the US mentor participants. Band of Runners designed and directed Team RWB’s highly respected National Trail Running Camp. There are sponsored spots for veterans & Gold Star spouses.
Multiple trail runs in the Blue Ridge Mountains with instruction from elite trail runners covering training, technical trail running, hill running, running form, strength training, nutrition, 1st aid, blister care, and night running. Nutritious meals, campfires, storytelling, & fellowship included.
Our goal is to facilitate access to the camaraderie and mentorship that can be found in the trail running community to people who would really benefit from that. We also hope to communicate the restorative experience of time spent running on trails in nature.
A host of world-class athletes and coaches will mentor participants in the technical aspects of trail running, as well as, running form, racing nutrition, training plans, blister care and prevention, stretching and strengthening, and Leave No Trace ethics. There is no fitness requirement.
Base Camp 40, Warrior's in the Wild (Colorado)
Base Camp 40, Warrioor's in the Wild is a Colorado private land cow elk hunt for our nations veteran's who have sacrificed so much for this great country. Originated in 2011 and operated under the 501 (c) (3) Whistler Entertainment Inc, BC40 hosts our nations hero's on several beautiful ranches here in western Colorado for a 5 day trip of a lifetime. Located in Colorado GMU40, this hunt takes place in the middle of some of the greatest elk habitat in the country, thus setting the scene for an up close and personal experience with these magnificent creatures. In 2014, BC40 is also expanding into other parts of the country, offering hunts in Texas, Kentucky, Alabama, several other ranches in Colorado, and an incredible fishing expedition with Charlotte Queen Adventures in British Columbia.
Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors
The Veterans Sunday Sailing Program with the Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors (BAADS) provides veterans the opportunity to sail in Access 303 and Access Liberty boats with other veterans every Sunday.
BAADS is offering this program to ALL veterans, not just disabled. This is intended as a thank you for service. Feel free to come this week and each week following with no obligations besides RSVP'ing to keep accurate count of our resources.
Birdies for the Brave (PGA Tour & Champions Tour events)
Birdies for the Brave offers complimentary admission for active, retired, and reserve military along with their dependents at select PGA TOUR and Champions Tour events. Many tournaments also offer discounted admission for veterans.
Black Dagger Military Hunt Club (Florida)
Black Dagger Military Hunt Club Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides shooting, hunting, fishing, and other outdoor opportunities for veterans and active duty military (wounded and well). We are located in the greater Tampa Bay, Florida area but operate around the state. Many of our volunteers are retired or active duty military with a great deal of tactical and hunting experience. We co-labor with other veteran groups and nonprofits to support those who give their all for our nation!
We serve veterans from all eras without limitation to when or where they served. We work with the James A. Haley VA Hospital’s Adaptive Sports Program in Tampa, Florida, the USSOCOM Care Coalition, and active duty military members on MacDill AFB. In addition, on a case-by-case basis, we will work with veterans supported by other agencies to meet a specific need that our team can satisfy. We serve veterans recovering from and learning to adjust to life with spinal cord injuries (SCI), traumatic brain injuries (TBI), loss of sight, and post-traumatic stress (PTS). We have specialized equipment to accommodate some of the most injured military heroes thus helping our honored veterans find their “new normal”.
Blue Star Museums
Blue Star Museums is a program that offers free admission to museums for all active duty, National Guard and Reserve military personnel and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Blue Star Theatres
Nearly two dozen theaters around the country are offering free and discounted tickets for plays, classes and other services to veterans and military families. This new program will also offer workshops and playwriting classes to veterans, job postings and casting notices on military bases.
Blum's Landing (Millersburg, MI)
Blum's Landing is a place for military personnel who have endured physical and/or mental wounds from serving the country.
We are a non-profit bed and breakfast for military personnel and their families to relax, to recoup, and to re-energize from the stress of their current rehab and duties.
Boulder Crest Retreat (Bluemont, VA)
We deliver free, short-duration, high-impact combat-related stress recovery retreats for combat veterans (male and female), couples, families, caregivers and Gold Star families, known as PATHH (Progressive and Alternative Training for Healing Heroes).
Camaraderie Foundation (Orlando, FL)
Military families are under significant emotional strain and often don’t have the opportunity to connect with peers. Through community partnerships, Camaraderie Foundation offers family-friendly events that are free of charge to help couples reconnect, let kids be kids and to just have fun.
Camp Gratitude (St. Croix, MN)
Camp Gratitude was developed by a partnership of veterans and grateful citizens who want to say "Thanks" to military families. Our mission is to help every family that attends Camp Gratitude relax and have fun while building strength, resilience and connection following deployment.
The 2017 Camp Gratitude event is already scheduled for June 16th to June 23rd at The Veterans Camp Ground on Big Marine Lake in Marine on St. Croix, MN.
Because of the increased popularity of Camp Gratitude and the fantastic Because of the increased popularity afforded by the Vet's Camp, it is recommended applications be submitted early.
Camp Liberty, Inc. (Michigan)
Camp Liberty provides inclusive outdoor recreation programs that aid in the reintegration of U.S. military service members, veterans, and their families, with an emphasis on assisting those with post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries.
Camp Noble Cause (Rockaway, NJ) (awaiting 2017 info)
JUNE 18-19, 2016, Winnebago Scout Reservation
For one weekend every year, Camp Winnebago provides an anything-but-usual camping experience. Each year, the Patriots' Path Council of the Boy Scouts of America turn over their camp to members of the military, their spouses and children, and transform Winnebago into Camp Noble Cause - an idyllic haven for active military personnel and their families to create the memories to last a lifetime. Join us for a most rewarding, memorable experience!
This is a free weekend and is open to all ACTIVE military personnel, including members of the Reserves and National Guard. This weekend is organized by the Boy Scouts of America. For insurance purposes, one member from each family will be asked to join the Learning for Life program at no cost or obligation.
Coming Home Project Retreats - California
The Coming Home Project offers free, confidential group support and stress management retreats for OIF and OEF veterans, service members and their families and professional service providers.
A multidisciplinary team of veterans, family members, psychotherapists and interfaith leaders, we are devoted to providing innovative, compassionate care to address the mental, emotional, spiritual and relationship problems veterans and service members face.
Compass Retreat Center (Loveland, OH)
Our mission is to provide a supportive setting for National Guard Members, Reservists and their families following deployment with emphasis on renewing relationships and strengthening family bonds.
Dark Horse Lodge (Paris, TN)
(They are beginning to raise the funds necessary to build this lodge for combat veterans, to visit, at no cost to them.)
Darkhorse Lodge will become a place of refuge and retreat for combat veterans. Each room will be named after one of the 25 men lost from the Marine Corps 3/5, Darkhorse unit.
We are a non-profit organization with 501(c)(3) recognition. Once our fundraising goal has been met, we will begin building our lodge. This will be a retreat for combat veterans of all branches to come to relax, fish on Kentucky Lake and communicate with others who have walked in their boots. Our mission is to honor our nation's heroes by providing a peaceful atmosphere for combat veterans to enjoy rest, relaxation and recreation.
Deployed Family Outdoors (Houston, TX)
Deployed Family Outdoors is a non-profit organization dedicated to serving and supporting our military and their families by providing unique and unforgettable outdoor adventures which strengthen family relationships and create valuable, lifelong lessons and memories. Deployed Family Outdoors has several programs to get the families and children of our military into the outdoors. Depending on which time of year it is, we do everything from taking kids to harvest their first deer or turkey, to bringing them out to experience what its like to catch tailing Redfish and Speckled Trout.
Disabled Veterans Rest Camp
(Big Marine Lake, Minnesota - North of Twin Cities)
The Disabled Veterans Rest Camp provides facilities and opportunities for recreation, rest, and well being for all women and men who have served or are serving in the Armed Forces of the United States, along with their families. The campground is open to all military personnel in good standing: Active duty, Reservists/Guard, veterans, disabled, retirees, families and friends.
Visit the Military Disney Tips website, a military families resource for military discounts on Disney vacations.
Eagle Rock Camp (Denver, NC)
Eagle Rock Camp reconnects military families at therapeutic retreats that are faith based, build a healthy spirit and strong family bonds.
We believe that when the troops serve, the whole family serves. To honor, respect and empower these brave men, women and their children, we created secluded and very special settings that are free from the distractions of daily life. This allows our military families to focus on each other and to better handle the challenges of invisible and visible wounds.
Our families attend 6 day/5 night retreats at no charge to them. The entire family learns life skills that provide positive, life changing experiences so they can recharge their energy and spirits, while learning to live life better and enhance family relationships. They learn to have fun together, once again.
English River Outfitters (Washington, IA, adjacent Sockum Ridge)
English River Outfitters is part of the healing process for veterans. Our priority is to help foster a healthy readjustment back to civilian life through a positive outdoor experience.
Veterans and families served at English River Outfitters experience a variety of therapeutic, group-based activities designed to re-establish confidence, hope, and health. In addition to our weekend retreats for veterans, we also hold special programs to serve children from Gold Star families, as well as ladies-only veteran camp-out events.
What Makes English River Outfitters different? We believe there is healing in nature, and therefore we emphasize an outdoor experience where veterans can fish, hunt, and hike in the woodlands surrounding our facilities. Veterans with physical disabilities are able to participate fully using our all-terrain wheelchairs. The veterans we serve participate in sporting activities that challenge and empower them, all while immersed in Iowa's natural, refreshing wilderness.
FAVE Boating Expeditions (Ruskin, FL)
Our boating trips offer a variety of boating excursions for our veterans, military service members and Gold Star families whose life has been touched and forever changed by the death of a Fallen Warrior. Our goal is to honor, support and promote healing of the mind and spirit in a relaxed environment.
Fishing for Freedom - June 3-5, 2016 (Quincy, Illinois) (awaiting 2017 info)
The Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) will soon be entering it's 16th year and our troops have served on multiple combat deployments. The stresses of combat and high operational tempo have strained our military and their families to no end. We have seen and heard the stories of these heroes as many have returned home with horrific physical injuries, but a tremendous psychological toll is also being paid. Even though several new Department of Defense and Veterans Administration initiatives have attempted to de-stigmatize and address all aspects of mental health, suicide rates are alarmingly high across all services and within our transitioned GWOT veteran population. There is more we can do to help these veterans deal with the baggage of combat and get back to some resemblance of their normal lives.
By their very nature, outdoor recreational activities are extremely therapeutic and have been shown through recent examples to make a difference in our returning warrior’s lives. Although angling is only one of those outdoor activities, it is one that can help our returning heroes escape the hardships of combat deployments and begin the process of assimilation back into to everyday life.
Inspired by the "Army Bass Anglers", fishing guides take wounded warriors and GWOT veterans out for a day of tounament bass and catfishing fun. With the assistance from a network of bass and catfish anglers throughout the region as well as caring local and corporate sponsors, the Bi-State Basser's Bass Club will be hosting their 4th annual Fishing for Freedom event.
Fishing for Freedom - October 6-8, 2017 (Truman Lake, Missouri)
Come out and share a wonderful day of camaraderie on a beautiful lake with America’s real life heroes in an attempt to show them how much we appreciate the sacrifices they make that allow us to enjoy the freedoms of the greatest country in the world.
Flyin’ Heroes is a program that utilizes the sport of fly fishing to promote therapeutic growth and rehabilitation of U.S. military veterans.
The goal of Flyin’ Heroes is to create memorable fly fishing experiences that unlock the healing power of the water and foster lasting relationships.
Fishing is simply the tool that allows us to connect with our local community of veterans. We focus on the importance of creating lasting relationships and life long memories on the river.
Flyin’ Heroes utilizes individualized personal trips, which are used to empower and inspire veterans to make positive gains towards mental health and living productive, fulfilling lives.
Freedom Hunters is a military outreach program dedicated to honoring those who protect our freedoms. Our mission is to salute the noble work of our courageous men and women of our Armed Forces. Freedom Hunters reflects the outdoor community's appreciation to our troops by taking: select active duty and combat veterans, families of fallen heroes, children of the deployed, as well as those wounded or injured, on outdoor adventures. Freedom Hunters mission is empowered by the generous support of many: sportsmen, conservation groups, state agencies, outfitters, corporations, and land owners.
Freedom Waters Foundation (Naples, FL - south Florida)
The Freedom Waters Foundation veterans program, which began in 2012, provides boat outings and marine activities for veterans and their family members, offering the opportunity to relax, leaving their concerns on the dock as they cruise away to enjoy camaraderie with other veterans in a safe, enriching environment.
Free Military Beaches (New Jersey)
Seeking to provide free beach access to military in New Jersey.
Gameday for Heroes
Gameday for Heroes is a not-for-profit organization that sends wounded and active duty military personnel to college sporting events, focusing mainly on football, basketball, and baseball. Gameday For Heroes accepts monetary donations, unused tickets from season ticket holders, donations from university or college athletic departments and ticket offices, and in-kind donations.
GratitudeAmerica Retreats (Florida, Georgia, Illinois)
Our organization is proud to be hosting the GratitudeAmerica Military Support Retreats, an integrative intensive retreats program for post-9/11 era service members/veterans and their primary support persons (this may include a friend, family member, parent, spouse, girlfriend/boyfriend, caregiver, etc.).
Heal Our Heroes Retreats (Concord, NC)
In an outdoor setting, we facilitate healing for our military through hunting, clay target shooting, hiking, fishing, small lake boating, campfires and group discussions. In this environment we seek our Creator, and look to chaplains and mentors to provide emotional and mental healing, renewal, rebuilding of relationships and renewed purpose to those we serve.
Outdoor retreats provide the best setting for veterans to find help and healing. Retreats are conducted on a ranch where you can meet and share experiences with other Vets and engage in outdoor adventure activities to include: full climbing tower, twin 500 ft zip lines, high low ropes course, horseback riding, hiking and group campfire discussions.
Cost: $25 per veteran
Extra Benefit: We will take an application for training and certification that qualifies any Vet for employment in a transportation related area of your choice.
Future: Couples and family retreats and parent youth retreats
Heroes' Hunt for Veterans (Wisconsin)
Heroes' Hunt For Veterans is a non-profit organization designed to benefit veterans, which gives them the opportunity to experience a quality, guided, free-range, deer, turkey or waterfowl hunt.
Heroes Meeting Heroes
Heroes Meeting Heroes helps veterans get the chance to meet and see famous comedians, music groups, etc who want to show their support of the troops.
Hockey Saves is a play on words which caught on to an accidental project after discovering how helpful the game of ice hockey can be for people. "Saves" are a good thing in the hockey world..... You know, "Nice save" or "Did you see that save?" ..."He saved the game" The game itself "saves" many people. HOCKEY is like noodle soup for the soul...from this, a simple idea emerged... What better way to thank a Soldier?
After lots of hard work and a huge legal bill, we're happy to announce we are a 501(c)3 exempt non-profit. Well done to all those who worked hard to achieve this...now we're working hard to keep our Service Members enjoying all things HOCKEY and having a few hours of 'nothing else matters.'
HomeFront Equestrians, Inc. (Ware, MA)
Founded as a way of giving back to military families, HomeFront Equestrians, Inc. offers hands on horsemanship; from grooming and groundwork to riding and showing, we offer an in-depth program for military families in a fun, positive and educational environment.
Horses4Heroes - Ladies Unbridled
In Las Vegas tradition, “what happens at the ranch, stays at the ranch” during our weekly Ladies Unbridled riding sessions!
Launched in 2013, Ladies Unbridled is a weekly Ladies Only riding session. We are looking for stay-at-home military moms, wives with a deployed, injured or deceased spouse, young military wives and other ladies who would like or need a little “me” time with horses! At our Las Vegas HQ, we request a $10 donation for each session. Prices can vary from facility to facility. Membership in Horses4Heroes is NOT required to participated in Ladies Unbridled.
Horses4Heroes - Operation Free Ride
An opportunity to ride a horse for free!
Operation Free Ride is a program that offers weekly, hosted or sponsored horseback riding sessions that are free for every member of their family! This program serves military families with a deployed family member, as well as families who have a family member with a disability or serious illness. While our program is not able to serve the needs of the developmentally disabled or those with serious or terminal illnesses, we invite the other family members to enjoy the distractions and benefits to body and soul that only a day with horses can provide.
Operation Free Ride is just one of the programs that help Horses4Heroes fulfill its mission to make horseback riding affordable for, and accessible to the families of the heroes in our community including, but not limited to: active duty military personnel, veterans, law enforcement officers, fire fighters/EMTs, critical care and hospice nurses and others.
House in the Woods, Inc. (Lee, Maine)
A free, outdoor self-help program which remains flexible to the needs of those whom we serve. The only expense to participants is their transportation to Lee, Maine. Using the recreational, therapeutic, and educational properties of Maine’s great wilderness and outdoor heritage, we form short-term retreats for participants to meet others with common military-related challenges and experiences. Activities are led by licensed Maine guides and staffed with caring volunteers and assistance from the local VA Center and health professionals from the community upon request. Maine is a four season climate, so activities will be dependent on weather and availability.
Hunt Antler Ridge (NW Missouri)
An easy drive one hour north of Kansas City is a place at the end of the road where you trade in your daily pressures for a slower pace. There, you'll find a relaxed atmosphere only known to those that visit. Take a few moments to consider Antler Ridge by reviewing our website. Hunting, horse riding, hiking and fishing are only a few of the activities you can enjoy. We offer 50% off the price of our accommodations to those that have served in combat. Our only catch for our reduced rate accommodations is a trade for a “combat patch".
Hunts for Healing Foundation - Family Camp (NE Pennsylvania)
Founded February 2009, Hunts for Healing was created to establish a fund to sponsor wounded soldiers returning from military missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and veterans who have successfully completed a mental and physical evaluation; allowing them to participate in outdoor programs including, but not limited to, hunter safety, clay target shooting, pheasant, upland and small game hunting, fishing and camping.
Hunts for Healing events take place primarily in Northeastern Pennsylvania, but in the future may extend beyond our state borders. Our mission and field of interest are to create an atmosphere that promotes challenges in the outdoors and healing from within.
With the assistance of volunteer guides, mentors and trained field dogs, the experiences Hunts for Healing provides aides in the physical, emotional and spiritual healing, as well as, providing social interaction that allows the soldiers to transition back into their daily lives.
Family Camp - summer
Kieve Veterans Camp (Kieve, ME)
Veterans Camp - For veterans and families who have experienced the stress of deployment during past and current conflicts.
Dear Veterans: We thank you for your service to our nation by offering you and your family a stress-free week-long program at our Veterans Family Camp. We want you to relax, have fun and reconnect with your family and other veterans. Eat good food, sleep like a baby, and build great memories. Come to our camp and enjoy a variety of fun, entertaining and challenging indoor and outdoor activities. All free of charge.
My Warrior's Place (Ruskin, FL)
My Warriors Place is a retreat center for veterans, military service members, first responders, Gold Star, Blue Star and Silver Star families. Additionally, My Warrior’s Place offers several amazing programs for those who have put their life on the line for our safety and well being, endured the death of a Fallen Warrior and/or experienced the horrors of war. Each program offered by My Warrior’s Place plays an important role in the healing and coping process, and the support that is obtained through these programs is priceless!
National Parks - Free entrance pass
Active duty service men and women – Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and activated National Guard and Reserves – can obtain the new military version of the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Annual Pass. The pass will be accepted at National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Reclamation, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Army Corps sites that charge entrance or standard amenity fees.
Military members and their dependents can pick up a pass at any national park or wildlife refuge that charges an entrance fee or other selected sites. Members must show a current, valid military identification card to obtain their pass. The pass is also available to dependents of active duty personnel.
Where there are entrance fees, the pass covers the owner and accompanying passengers in a single, private, non-commercial vehicle at recreation sites that charge per vehicle. At sites where per-person entrance fees are charged, it covers the pass owner and three accompanying adults age 16 and older. There is no entry fee for children 15 and under.
While the pass is not available to veterans and retirees, many of these individuals are eligible for other discounted passes, such as the Senior Pass, granting lifetime access to U.S. citizens over 62 for $10, and the Access Pass granting free lifetime access for permanently disabled U.S. citizens."
Operation At Ease
(St James Plantation (Southport/Oak Island) on the NC coast)
Our mission is to provide active duty military personnel who have deployed or are about to be deployed to Iraq and/or Afghanistan and/or their families with the opportunity for a complimentary weekend of rest, relaxation and recreation, as an expression of our appreciation and gratitude for their service.
Operation Campout (Maryland)
The Maryland Park Service is proud to partner with The North Face: Explore Your Parks, to offer an opportunity to camp at selected state parks.
With the new Operation: Campout! program, we can lend you gear free of charge (includes a tent, chairs, stove, lantern and more). This program is designed for military individuals and military families new to camping or experienced campers stationed or recovering in this area. Operation: Campout! is an opportunity for families to reconnect with each other and the great outdoors in a comfortable, safe and relaxing setting.
Campsites have picnic tables and fire pits. Some sites have electric hook-ups. Restrooms and shower facilities are nearby.
Operation: Care and Comfort Tickets for Troops (San Francisco Bay area and Northern California)
Working with sports teams, event venues and season ticket holders, OCC has distributed tens of thousands donated tickets to military families and veterans in the San Francisco Bay area and Northern California, free of charge.
Since 2004, Operation: Care and Comfort has worked with professional and college sports teams, entertainment venues, and promoters to send thousands of troops, reservists, veterans and their immediate families to events—free! OCC also partners with northern California sports teams to hold military appreciation/Support Our Troops games. We charge no services charges, no mailing costs—the tickets are absolutely FREE!
If you are military active duty, reservist, veteran, military retiree or a Gold Star Family located in California, you may sign up to be included on our list for complimentary tickets to local sporting and entertainment events. Donated tickets are often last minute or on game day, so please give us the best phone numbers to reach you! We currently announce new tickets on our Facebook page- OCC.USA. Check daily then follow the instructions posted to request tickets.
Operation Jersey Shore Vacation
Operation Jersey Shore Vacation is an organization whose purpose is to unite deserving soldiers who have just recently returned from or are about to embark on deployment in Iraq or Afghanistan on a free vacation with their families at the Jersey Shore.
Operation: Military Kids Family Camp (Hawaii)
YMCA Camp Erdman has partnered with Operation: Military Kids (OMK) to provide family camps for military families. These family camps are designed to give military families various resources and outlets and provide some much needed recreation time. For more information on OMK and their programs, click here.
The Hawaii Operation: Military Kids Family Camp is intended to provide much needed time for Reserve, Guard and Active Duty families to connect after a deployment or before an impending deployment. Most of the costs associated with attending camp, such as food, lodging and activities are paid for by Operation: Military Kids, so we are able to offer the camp at affordable rates for families.
Operation Oasis at Sandy Cove (Maryland)
Have you been deployed overseas away from your family (hardship tour) within the last 12 months?
Sandy Cove's Operation Oasis ministry was designed to help military families reconnect following the long and challenging separation caused by war…and to say, “Thank you and welcome home!”
There are a variety of retreats that you may choose from including: 5 Night Family Camp Vacation, a Valentine Couples Getaway and a Fall Couples Weekend or a two-night getaway.
Operation Purple Family Retreats - National Military Family Assoc. Family Retreats
Operation Purple® Family Retreats are designed to allow families to reconnect after experiencing the stresses surrounding a deployment. They are a great opportunity to spend time outdoors, try new things, make friends, and enjoy quality time together as a family. These four day retreats take place in beautiful National Parks and are led by experienced outdoor educators.
Operation R&R is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to helping military families of service men and women, deal with the problems of reintegration and in easing post deployment stress.
This is accomplished by providing a complimentary weeks vacation in donated rental properties at various "affiliate" locations, to provide these deserving military families the opportunity to "reconnect" with their loved ones at little or no cost.
Operation Welcome Home at Miracle Lodge Retreat and Conference Center
The Miracle Lodge has become the premier facility for retreats for soldiers and their families. Operation Welcome Home got started in 2007 and has now served over 300 families. We have a list of upcoming military retreats. These retreats are free of charge for all military. Help spread the word and sign up today.
Adventure and challenge, solitude, reflection, and renewal, the wilderness has always symbolized a new beginning - a place for discovery and fulfilling adventure. The Outward Bound program for veterans provides an opportunity for camaraderie and has proven to be a powerful tool helping veterans readjust after leaving the combat zone.
Our newest programs offer numerous wilderness adventures exclusively for war veterans, and are fully funded for all participants, to include their roundtrip stateside travel costs between home and the excursion site. Our goals include helping participating veterans build a supportive community with other war veterans; facilitating discussions on readjustment and transition challenges; and re-energizing and reinvigorating our veterans' spirits with adventures and challenges in the beautiful outdoors.
Patriot Anglers (Parker, CO)
The Patriot Anglers strengthens bonds and uplifts U.S. military families past and present, by providing a unique Rocky Mountain fishing experience. Patriot Anglers is currently hosting multiple fishing trips per month, year round, including facilitating the fishing activity for Project Sanctuary’s military family retreats.
Project New Hope (Canada and United States)
Project New Hope exists to provide veteran family retreats.
Including the whole family (even the kids!) is unique to Project New Hope and fosters family togetherness through a wilderness getaway. It is our goal to provide combat veterans and their families with the education, training, and skills necessary to manage their lives after wartime service; repair of relationships is a primary goal. And of course, have fun in the process!
NO COST TO PARTICIPANTS. That's right. There is no cost to the families on the retreat.
Project New Hope Inc. (Worcester, Massachusetts)
Project New Hope Inc. mission is to assist veterans and their families with PTSD, TBI, military sexual trauma, marital issues, chronic pain issues and suicidal thoughts, and other issues that might arise. We are an organization that helps U.S. veterans and their families with addressing the challenges, fears and stigma that they face during and after they have served in our Armed Services. Project New Hope is committed to aiding our service members and their families by providing them the opportunity to get away and reconnect by attending one of our retreats. The organization offers tools for recognizing the symptoms and triggers of military-related occupational stress and injuries, as well as assist in developing coping mechanisms through holistic approaches to healing. All our staff and volunteers are committed to assisting our service members in their pursuit of New Hope and success in all they do.
Project Recuperation & Reintegration Retreat
Once a military member returns from duty in a combat zone, AVET Project selects applicants on a first come, first served basis to participate in a retreat where they, and a spouse or significant other, can decompress, relax, and reconnect with one another. Our AVET Project staff instructs about reintegration issues, coping methods, and relaxation skills, as well as offer stress mediation techniques. While not structured to the point of being a classroom scenario, an itinerary is followed so the participant can choose to partake or simply skip a topic, if desired. A certified hypnotherapist counselor assists each participant in dealing with unresolved issues. Airfare, ground transportation, meals, lodging, and recreational opportunities are provided absolutely FREE.
Project Sanctuary (Rocky Mountains, CO)
Project Sanctuary is an innovative veteran non-profit organization that brings military families together following deployments. During a six day retreat in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, Project Sanctuary provides recreational activities as a form of diversion therapy to help military men and women and their families reconnect, heal from lengthy separations and begin to communicate again.
Purple Heart Ranch (Sterling City, TX)
Military Warriors Hero Support Foundation
Purple Heart Ranch is open exclusively to combat wounded heroes and to Gold Star families. The ranch is also open to children of combat wounded heroes and those who have a parent currently deployed to a combat zone. Both the families of the wounded heroes and the parents of the children are encouraged to come and enjoy the experience with the hunters. There is fishing available at both properties and many other activities for the families. Both ranches are rich in history and are littered with Native American artifacts, especially arrow heads.
Reel American Heroes
The Reel American Heroes Foundation is a nonprofit organization that seeks to promote recreational opportunities for wounded Soldiers, active duty Soldiers and veterans of the United States military.
Our organization sets up fishing tournament at military bases in the United States throughout the year. When the soldiers and their families arrive we provide all of them with free fishing equipment that they keep to further pursue the sport if they choose. Each morning all military related participants are paired up with volunteer anglers and taken out to fish an actual tournament. During each day, games, food, drinks and entertainment are all provided free of charge from launch to weigh-in. After the weigh-ins trophies are awarded to the top three soldiers (or family members) for the biggest fish in each category.
Restoring the Warriors Heart (Dickson, TN)
Restoring the Warrior’s Heart, Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides weekend retreats for combat-experienced soldiers and their families. The purpose of these retreats is to help soldiers and their spouses connect with God, each other, and with fellow soldiers as they deal with the moral wounds and relational stresses associated with war. Through this ministry God has been faithful to draw people to Himself for redemption and healing. Wounds have been healed, chains broken, sins confessed, relationships with God established, marriages strengthened, and lives changed.
Because this is a volunteer effort we can offer a first class event for minimal expense, all of which is covered by donations from churches, businesses, civic clubs and individuals.
R4 Alliance is a membership of programs of excellence providing therapeutic and community based recreation services to our military family. We are focused and committed to achieving the highest quality services through collaborative efforts in Research, education, standards of excellence, economic viability, and continuum of care across our service community. We believe these services are essential to the holistic Rehabilitation and Reintegration of our military family.
Rick Herrema Foundation (Fort Bragg, NC)
(Currently in the process of being built)
The Rick Herrema Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to rejuvenating military families. RHF is considering constructing a five-star, daily use resort facility in Fayetteville, NC that will be free for military families. The resort center is a 26-acre campus with plans to include activities such as horse-back riding, lake fishing, a community garden, family gardening plots, a mountain-bike trail, nature hiking trail, a welcome center with coffee shop, a splash pad, an elaborate indoor-outdoor playground and various areas designated for club activities initiated by resort patrons (such as astronomy,boy/girl scouts, chess, reading, or other clubs of mutual interest). The idea is to build a community focused resort to honor the service of our military families.
RHF’s metric for success is simple; it is a one-question test. “Do you feel more connected to your family after spending time at Rick’s Place?” If their answer is YES, then we have succeeded.
Seats 4 Soldiers
Seats4Soldiers is a non-profit that enables its supporters to honor our deployed U.S. military and reserve servicemen and women for their sacrifices by donating "seats" (tickets) to sporting/entertainment events upon their safe return home.
S.K.I.F.F. (Texas - Fort Hood, Killeen, Copperas Cove, Harker Heights, Belton, Salado, and Temple)
S.K.I.F.F. stands for Soldiers' Kids Involved in Fishing Fun. S.K.I.F.F. fishing trips for kids are absolutely free of charge to the children of soldiers deployed in harm's way, and to the children of soldiers who died while on active duty.
S.K.I.F.F. trips are paid for by donations from the membership of the Austin Fly Fishers and by funds they raise for this worthy cause. Austin Fly Fishers is a fly fishing club based in Austin, Texas. Your children do not have to be referred or recommended by another individual to participate. All it takes is a phone call from a parent to get the ball rolling.
Sportsmen's Foundation for Military Families
The Sportsmen’s Foundation for Military Families (SFMF), a charitable organization, is established to provide combat veterans a chance to participate in the hunting sports. Any combat veteran of the United States Armed Forces, or an immediate family member of a veteran killed in combat, is eligible to apply. Our hunts have proven to be extremely therapeutic to those in need. However, participation is not limited to those who have been wounded in battle or are suffering, any combat veteran may apply. All hunts are professionally guided. It is our way of saying thank you for your service.
Squaw Valley (Lake Tahoe, CA)
Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows stands behind all of our men and women in the U.S. armed forces. As a thank you, we offer U.S. active duty military a restricted Tahoe Super Pass. The cost of the season pass is a $25 donation to these great organizations: Military to the Mountains and 22 Kill.
Stacy and Charlie's Hero Hunt (Henderson, MN)
Stacy & Charlie's Hero Hunt offers returning Soldiers and veterans recreational opportunities on private lands in Minnesota.
State Parks - New Hampshire
Active members of any military branch regardless of residence are granted free admission to day-use areas for themselves only with presentation of their military ID.
New Hampshire disabled veterans are admitted free of charge at all day-use parks. Special number plates issued to disabled veterans or a letter issued by the United States Department of Veteran Affairs certifying that the veteran suffers from a service-connected disability shall constitute satisfactory proof under this section.
Take a Soldier Fishing
We assist communities at large, by offering them the ability to show their support for the troops by sponsoring our Take A Soldier Fishing program. This allows service members to see just how much they are appreciated. For those that serve to support our fishing program, it gives the individual the ability to see how their support makes a profound difference in a service member or veterans life by providing a safe and positive outdoor experience.
We strive to show that there are people out there that care, and want to help. By providing these events, we have found they give the soldiers something to look forward to. We have also found that soldiers have also changed their outlook on life - the way they feel about wearing their uniform and a new sense of hope.
Tents for Troops
As a very small way of saying "Thank You" for all of the hard work and sacrifices men and women in the military make, campgrounds and RV parks around the nation would like to offer free camping for active military. Please visit our Camp Locations page to find a participating park near where you wish to spend some R & R. Active military will be required to present active military I.D. at the time of check in. The offer is for active military and members of their immediate family only. Please call the park directly for reservations. Reservations are required.
Can't find a site where you want to visit? The best way to help promote the growth of Tents For Troops is word-of-mouth. Recommend the site to any active military you know. If you personally know an RV park/resort or campground that may be interested in joining, please get them in contact with us (or us with them)! We hope to have multiple places to stay per state as soon as possible - and that can be made much more possible with your help. Help us get the word out! Please be courteous to our member parks. If you enjoy your stay, consider blogging about it, posting an online review, and telling friends or family members about the program. And remember to tell the staff at the campground that you appreciate your stay!
Thank You Deployments (Operation Supply Drop)
Nominated VIP experiences provided to veterans that have shown their service never stops. Past experiences include: Professional Sports, X-Games, Video Game & Entertainment Expos, Super Car Racing and Outdoors Sports.
The Cove (Billy Graham Evangelistic Association) (Asheville, NC)
Active-duty, Guard and Reserve service members and their spouses can attend retreats at The Cove at no cost to them. This includes program fee, lodging and meals. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association is proud of you and other brave men and women in uniform, and we appreciate your service to our country. To show our thanks, we are pleased to offer full scholarships for active-duty military personnel and their spouses to attend a seminar at The Cove, located in Asheville, N.C.
Come renew your spirit through encouragement and sound biblical teaching from respected Christian speakers. You will also enjoy the quiet seclusion of our mountain retreat, complete with winding trails, relaxing rooms, and celebrated cuisine. Most importantly, you will have plenty of time and space to be alone with God.
The Explorers Club
The Explorers Club extends free membership to active duty military personnel and those disabled while in active service.
The Explorers Club promotes the scientific exploration of land, sea, air, and space by supporting research and education in the physical, natural and biological sciences. The Club’s members have been responsible for an illustrious series of famous firsts: First to the North Pole, first to the South Pole, first to the summit of Mount Everest, first to the deepest point in the ocean, first to the surface of the moon—all accomplished by our members.
Our mission is to advance field research, scientific exploration, resource conservation, and the ideal that it is vital to preserve the instinct to explore. The Club’s goals in research, education, and public service include the orientation of young people toward careers in field science and engineering, and the encouragement of scientific exploration of land, sea, the air and space, with emphasis on the physical and natural sciences. We serve as a common bond and meeting point for explorers and field scientists worldwide, thus continuing the early goals laid down by our founders in 1904.
Ticket Club (free membership)
As a special thank you, please accept a FREE Ticket Club™ Premier membership, valued at $49.99.
We're extending this offer to active duty and veteran U.S. military personnel. While anyone can shop on the Ticket Club™ website for great prices on a large selection of tickets to concerts, sports, and theater events, you, as a member, can save even more - with no service fees!
Tight Lines for Troops (Manistee, MI) - May 19 & 20, 2017
8th Annual Tight Lines for Troops Charity Fishing Tournament for Michigan's veterans. This free event helps disabled veterans have fun, and thanks them for their outstanding service to our country.
Tip Ups for the Troops (Milford, MI) - June 10, 2017
FREE – 11th Annual Registration “Tip-Up for Troops” Form. Kensington Metropark, Brighton, MI – Saturday, June 10, 2017
Camp Liberty Inc., an all-volunteer, 501-c-3 non-profit organization, is requesting your attendance at the upcoming 11th Annual “Tips-Up for the Troops” event.
Who can come: Everyone is invited to the fun and games like the Corn Hole tournament, Family Fun Walk, Classic Car Show, and the Eisenhower Center “All American BBQ.” The Bass Tournament is open only to all veterans and pro anglers (boaters) who are also encouraged to bring family members to enjoy the day’s festivities.
About the Tips-Up for Troops event: Recognized by the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, Tips-Up for Troops has hosted over 300 combat veterans and 2,000 other guests over the years. All proceeds this year go to benefit Camp Liberty and the Michigan chapter of Paralyzed Veterans of America Veteran Program.
Troop Rewards - RNR Recovery for our Deployed
Troop Rewards was founded on the mission of providing RnR Recovery Vacations and other rewards for returning U.S. Armed Forces, and their families, who served overseas in Iraqi, Afghanistan and other hostile deployment AOR's.
These RnR vacations and rewards rely on luxury resorts and hotels to donate unused inventory to Troop Rewards. We then offer our returning servicemembers family RnR recovery vacations at these locations at no cost to help them re-adjust to civilian life back home. We also ask our hosting hotel to provide daily breakfast and at least 1 lunch and 1 dinner during their stay and host a Welcome Home Reception at the resort.
Valhalla Sailing Project (Annapolis, MD)
Valhalla Sailing Project is a non-profit organization that promotes awareness of the Veteran Suicide epidemic and develops resilience and self-efficacy in the veteran community. Through the sport of competitive sailing, we offer wounded, disabled, and separating members an experience that replicates the sense of teamwork, camaraderie and esprit de corps that so many find absent in their post service lives. Through direct involvement with individual veterans as crew members and through direct engagement with the public in the sailing community Valhalla Sailing Project is committed to raising awareness of veteran issues and ending veteran suicide.
Offers national, local and regional expeditions for military veterans.
We will connect and challenge veteran teams in the outdoors and tell the stories of our teams to the broader veteran and non-veteran community to increase understanding of the military veteran experience.
Success in the outdoors is never guaranteed, but if one never gets to the base of the trail and takes the first step, one never knows what might be possible. By preparing and taking veterans on outdoor expeditionary challenges Veterans Expeditions will prove to those participating and observing, that military veterans, regardless of any existing or perceived mental or physical disability are capable of contributing to a team’s greater strength and accomplishing a difficult mission.
Veterans Outdoor World Inc.
Whether you are a disabled veteran, non-disabled veteran, or a non-veteran who loves the outdoors and is willing to help our disabled veterans enjoy the outdoors, we want to welcome you to the organization.
Our goal is to help as many disabled veterans, who love hunting and fishing, continue to enjoy their love for the outdoors as much as possible. Keeping in mind, not all disabilities are physical. To accomplish this, we hope to make personal connections between our veterans and volunteers to allow as many opportunities as possible to stay active in their desired activity.
Veteran Tickets Foundation
Veteran Tickets Foundation (Vet Tix) provides FREE event tickets to family members of troops Killed In Action (K.I.A.), our military and veterans to sporting events, concerts, performing arts and family activities.
Attending these events reduces stress through entertainment, strengthens family bonds, builds life long memories and encourages service members to stay engaged with American life and local communities.
Giving free event tickets is an expression of appreciation, acknowledgement and an enduring symbol that we, as a nation, honor the service of our troops today and long after their tour of duty has passed. Helping our veterans attend events provides positive family and life experiences after their years of service to our country.
Walleyes for Warriors (Bay City, MI) - June 17-18, 2017
Walleyes for Warriors, located in Bay City, MI, is a free recreational therapy event such as this is a small way for us to not only say "Welcome Home," but also "Thank You" for serving our country.
Warrior Expeditions supports combat veterans transitioning from their military service by participating in long distance outdoor expeditions.
In 1948, Earl Shaffer told a friend he was going to “walk off the war” to work out the sights, sounds, and losses of World War II. Four months later, Earl Shaffer became the first person to hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine.
Following in Earl Shaffer’s footsteps and in recognizing the therapeutic effects of long distance outdoor expeditions, Warrior Expeditions created the Warrior Hike, Warrior Bike, and Warrior Paddle programs which are designed to help combat veterans transition from their military service.
Throughout the year, Warrior Plantation offers a variety of wellness retreats for veterans.
Warrior Scuba Project
Warrior Scuba Project conducts dynamic dive operations in a warrior-driven camaraderie-based environment. We will accomplish this by utilizing the talents of America’s Warfighters, in the Planning, Execution, and Recovery phases of dive operations.
Waves of Honor (SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, Sesame Place, Aquatica, Adventure Island)
Waves of Honor permits any U.S. active duty military, activated or drilling reservist, or National Guardsman to one complimentary admission per year for military personnel and as many as three direct dependents.
Military veteran promotions are available at: SeaWorld Orlando, Busch Gardens Willisamsburg and Sesame Place Langhorne.
YMCA - Camp Greenville Military Family Camp (Cleveland, SC)
Spring: April 14-16, 2017
Fall: November 10-12, 2017
$100.00 per family
All military veterans and their families are invited to spend a weekend in the mountains with other military families. This is a great opportunity to unwind and relax. Enjoy your cabin, amazing programs, and the best part is...let us do the cooking!
It will be a time to connect with other military families and create unforgettable memories with your own family. Thanks to the generous support of Friends of Y Camp Greenville, we are able to offer this great experience at an incredibly low price.
Young Life Military Family Camps
Locations: Ft. Carson, JBLM
Does your family crave adventure, excitement, laughter and fun or just a break from the daily stresses of life? If so, sign up now for Military Family Camp! Active-duty Soldiers and their families will enjoy one week of fun and relaxation. Each of our camp locations offers an assortment of activities and ample opportunity to just relax and enjoy some much-needed peace and quiet. With spectacular views and lots of recreation options and fun activities, it's the perfect place for your family to unwind together. Single parent families and families with a deployed spouse are encouraged to attend as well. Please note: Young Life is a Christian organization, but that is not a requirement to attend.