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Thanksgiving Day of Love

Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit

Minot Air Force Base Boy Scouts Troop 437, perform a scout’s honor to the pledge of allegiance, on base, North Dakota, Oct. 23, 2018. More than 200 senior citizens and retired military members participated in a Thanksgiving feast with various events, such as bingo, door prizes, and the crowning of the oldest male and female participant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit)

Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit

From left, Col. Craig Ramsey, 91st Missile Wing vice commander and Col. Bradley Cochran, 5th Bomb Wing commander, receive a plaque from Anne Sellers representing the Minot Commission on Aging, at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, Oct. 23, 2018. More than 200 senior citizens and retired military members participated in a Thanksgiving feast with various events, such as bingo, door prizes, and the crowning of the oldest male and female participant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit)

Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit

Minot retirees and civilians are seated at the Thanksgiving Day of Love at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, Oct. 23, 2018. More than 200 senior citizens and retired military members participated in a Thanksgiving feast with various events, such as bingo, door prizes, and the crowning of the oldest male and female participant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Dillon J. Audit)

MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. --

The Thanksgiving Day of Love has been around since 1970. Senior citizens and retired military veterans come from all around Minot to partake in the event.

The 49th annual Thanksgiving Day of Love was put together by Susan Wagers, 5th Force Support Squadron special programs coordinator, and many other Airmen and volunteers.

"Back in 1970 this was the brainchild of a gentleman named Bud Ebert," said Wagers. "As the community flight commander for the 5th Force Support Squadron, at the time, he coordinated with the base leadership about the Thanksgiving Day of Love."

Wagers said it only got bigger in the following years with activities such as bingo, door prizes, boy scouts, introductions by the base leadership and the crowning of the two oldest members present.

"The idea was to bring the senior citizens from Minot to enjoy Thanksgiving with the Minot AFB Airmen,” said Wagers. "It’s kind of a mutual admiration day to thank the senior citizens for supporting the base."

One of Wager’s favorite parts of the event is that it’s her way of giving back to the community.

"We want to show the citizens of Minot that we appreciate that they let us put a base here so long ago and continue to appreciate that decision," said Wagers.

Wagers wants the local community to see how much the base cares about them, from the many volunteers dressed in blues to the activities and care these citizens receive.

"The best comments as they're leaving are thank you so much and see you next year," said Wagers. "Even the volunteers want to sign up again."

Wagers said that more than 75 Team Minot members volunteered for this event, ranging from bus drivers, escorts, servers and kitchen help.

"It’s important because the base wants nothing more than to be able to call Minot home," said Wagers. "The connection that the base has with the city is strong and we want to keep it that way."
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