Military families invited to 2023 Salute Picnic

  • Published
  • By Top of Utah Military Affairs Committee

HILL AIR FORCE BASE – All active duty, Guard and Reserve military and family members are invited to the free, annual Military Salute Picnic from 4-8 p.m. Aug. 4 at Centennial Park.

Food service available from 4-7 p.m.

“Roosters Brewing, a well-known and respected local restaurant, will provide the high-end picnic fare” said Barbara Riddle, co-chair for the Salute Picnic. “There will also be live music throughout the day.”

Organizers from the Top of Utah Military Affairs Committee, who sponsor the event, said no speeches are planned – just fun, food and entertainment.

This will be the 21st year TOUMAC has sponsored the Military Salute Picnic. The first event, held Dec. 7, 2001, attracted about 350 people. This year, more than 3,500 are expected to attend.

"This event originally started as a welcome home celebration for military deployed following 9/11," said Bob Ekstrom, co-chair of the Salute Picnic.

The picnic evolved into an annual summer event as Hill’s ops tempo increased and deployments continued throughout the years.

“We are excited about the continual growth of the event, and the fact that we continue to serve 10 times the number of those attending the first event," Ekstrom said.

This year’s Salute Picnic will include live entertainment featuring the band TBD, as well as activities for all ages including eight wet and dry inflatables, a mechanical bull, access to the splash pad and all-abilities playgrounds adjacent to Centennial Park, face painting, princesses, pony carousel, exotic petting zoo, and kid-friendly foods. There will be military displays and a 75th Security Forces Squadron military working dog demonstration.

"Everything is free," Ekstrom said. "Wear your picnic attire and plan to eat, drink, and basically have a fun-filled afternoon."

TOUMAC members and community leaders will be in attendance to meet and greet, serve food and beverages, bus tables and handle other duties.

"This is our way of showing appreciation for the sacrifices made by military families," Riddle said. “Volunteering for this event is an annual highlight as it provides us a small way to give back to those who give so much for our families and our country. We want to create a fun-filled day for everyone, where we can celebrate together.”

TOUMAC is a joint committee between the Davis and Ogden/Weber Chambers of Commerce. They sponsor other events for Hill’s military and civilian employees, including military appreciation nights at an Ogden Raptors baseball game and at Weber State University football games.

The committee also supports base recognition programs and quality of life programs for the military and their families.