My Favorite time of the year!! My birthday and the day before that, Veterans Day!

Restaurants and different businesses honor us Veterans by offering freebies and special discounts on Veterans Day to show their appreciation for us who have sacrificed for our country.

Compliments of USA Today, here's a list of most of the places us Veterans can go and enjoy free meals, drinks, treats and even a haircut and car wash.

Proof of service such as a military ID is typically required and a few businesses will allow dressing in uniform as a form of identification.

Most of the freebies and discounts are valid only on Veterans Day, unless otherwise noted and available at participating locations. Some exclusions apply.

Early deals

ChipotleFrom 5 p.m. to close Tuesday, show your U.S. military ID and with the purchase of a burrito, bowl, salad or order of tacos, get a free entrée. This offer is for U.S. military, veterans and military spouses.

Denny'sFrom 5 a.m. to noon Friday, active, inactive and retired military personnel get a free Build Your Own Grand Slam at participating locations.

Firebird’s GrillVeterans and active duty service members get a free entrée when they dine with someone who purchases a meal Friday.

Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill: Free meal from a special menu Saturday at any of the nearly 1,800 locations.

Arooga’s Grille House & Sports Bar: Choice of pretzel including soft, crab or buffalo pretzel. This dine-in only offer is valid all-day Saturday at all locations, except for the Attleboro, Mass., location and at the Patchogue, N.Y., location, the special ends 4 p.m.

Back Yard Burgers: Free Classic Burgers Saturday for veterans and active duty personnel in uniform or with a valid ID. The chain also offers a 20% discount to service men and women year-round.

Bakers Square: Free breakfast Saturday with choice of buttermilk pancakes, three slices of French toast or a Belgian waffle.

Bonefish GrillFree Bang Bang Shrimp appetizer.

Buffalo Wild WingsFree small order of traditional or boneless wings with a side of fries.

Chili'sFree meal from a special menu.

Chuck E. CheeseFree personal one-topping pizza to veterans, active duty personnel and eligible dependents with military ID, proof of service and promo code 5500. The chain also has daily military discounts.

Cicis PizzaFree adult buffet Saturday.

Circle KFree Polar Pop with the Veterans Day deal on the convenience store chain’s mobile app and with military ID.

Cracker BarrelFree slice of Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola Cake.

Dickey’s Barbecue PitVeterans get a free sandwich, savory side and a Big Yellow Cup from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday.

Dunkin' DonutsFree doughnut of choice, while supplies last..

Hooters: Free meal from special menu.

Huddle HouseFree order of Sweet Cakes, platter-size pancakes available in eight different flavor and topping combinations at all locations nationwide.

Hurricane Grill & Wings: Free entrée and non-alcoholic drink from special menu.

Little CaesarsFree Hot-N-Ready lunch combo from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Logan's RoadhouseFree meal from special menu between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m.

LongHorn SteakhouseFree appetizer or dessert. Plus guests dining with veterans will receive 10% off their meals.

Main EventFree meal and $10 FUNcard. Locations open until 5 p.m. Saturday.

Mimi’s CaféFree meal from special menu..

O’Charley’s: Free meal from the “$9.99er Menu.” Plus get a $5 off $20 voucher for your next visit. Offers may vary by location. O’Charley’s offers a 10% military discount year-round.

Olive GardenFree meal from a select menu.

On the BorderFree combo meal.

Outback SteakhouseFree Bloomin' Onion and non-alcoholic beverage.

Panera Bread: Free breakfast sandwiches until 10 a.m. Saturday at participating locations. After 10 a.m., military members get a coupon for a free pastry to use on a future visit.

Pie Five PizzaFree customized pizza.

Pizza FactoryFree mini one-topping pizza and regular-size soda for lunch.

Red LobsterFree appetizer or dessert.

Red RobinFree Red's Tavern Double Burger with bottomless fries.

Ruby Tuesday: Free appetizer up to $10.

Sonny's BBQOffers vary by location. At some locations, veterans eat for half off and other locations will offer a free Big Deal Combo.

Texas RoadhouseFree meal from a special menu and choice of non-alcoholic drink.

TGI Friday's: Free lunch menu item up to $12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Plus get a coupon for $5 off next meal.

Vitality Bowls: Free smoothies to veterans at all corporate and participating franchise locations.

Free meals Monday

Golden CorralFree dinner buffet with beverage from 5 to 9 p.m. Nov. 13 for the chain’s annual Military Appreciation Night. Learn more at

Twin PeaksVets get a free meal from a special menu on Nov. 13.

Other Veterans Day freebies

American Family CareFree flu shots Saturday. Find locations at

Car washGet a free car wash at participating locations nationwide. Find a list of locations at

Crew CarwashFree car wash for veterans and active military members Saturday at all 30 locations across Indiana. To get this deal, share that you’re a veteran and would like the free car wash.

Great ClipsVeterans and active duty get a free haircut on Veterans Day or pick up a free haircut card to use through Dec. 31. Also non-veterans who get a haircut Saturday get a free haircut card to give to a veteran.

Hair CutteryFor every haircut purchased by customers Saturday, a free haircut certificate will be donated back to a veteran in the same community. To distribute the free haircut certificates, Hair Cuttery is working with veteran's organizations.

Sports ClipsThrough its Help A Hero campaignparticipating stores offer free haircuts to service members and veterans with valid military identification. Stores also are collecting money for scholarships.

Veterans Day meal deals

99 Restaurants: From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, veterans and active military get a free meal with purchase of an entree.

Black Angus SteakhouseSpecial top sirloin steak meal for $9.99, which includes home-style mashed potatoes, broccoli with garlic butter and a beverage. The dine-in offer is available at participating locations from open to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Capriotti’sBuy one sandwich, get one free.

Creamistry50% off any single menu item at all locations.

Fogo de Chão: 50% off meals for veterans and active duty personnel Friday through Sunday. Plus up to three guests get 10% off their meals at all U.S. locations.

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria15% discount for veterans. New York, New Jersey and Connecticut locations are not participating.

Hickory Tavern50% discount on food and non-alcoholic beverages.

Panini Kabob Grill50% off Saturday.

Store military discounts

Many stores offer military discounts year-round, but a handful are only on Veterans Day.

A.C. Moore: 15% off your total regular and sale price purchase with valid ID every day.

Bed Bath & Beyond25% off entire purchase Nov. 9-12 in-store only.

Dollar General11% discount in-store and online with promo code VET17 on Saturday.

Home Depot10% discount.

Jo-Ann Fabric: 10% discount for military service members and their families year round.

Lowe's10% discount.

Michaels15% discount for military families every day.

Old Time Pottery: 10% military discount everyday to active, retired military and their immediate families.

Publix10% discount for veterans, military personnel and family members Saturday.

Rack Room Shoes10% military discount on Veterans Day as well as every Tuesday.

TargetThrough Saturday, 10% discount on in-store and online purchases for veterans, active military, spouses and dependent children. To get this discount, register at

Toys R Us: 15% off in-store purchases through Saturday.

Walgreens20% off eligible regular-price items Saturday for all veterans, military and their families with Balance Rewards card and proof of military service.

"What's the most important thing I need to know about getting a free meal this Veterans Day?"

I can't urge you enough to call the exact location you plan on visiting before you head out for your free meal.

With a simple phone call, you can make sure they're participating, what date and time they're giving out free meals, whether a purchase is required, and if you need to bring proof of service along with you.

"Who's eligible for a free meal on Veterans Day?"

Eligibility for the free meals on Veterans Day is up to the restaurant. Veterans are always eligible, and most of the time active duty military members are eligible as well.

Be sure to check with the restaurant you'll be visiting for specific details on who's eligible for the free meal.

"When are the Veterans Day free meals?"

Most of the free meals will be served on Veterans Day which is Saturday, November 11, 2017.

However, some of the meals are available all weekend long, or on another date entirely. For example, Veterans Day is observed on Friday, November 10, 2017, and some of the restaurants have decided to offer those free meals on Friday and some on Mondays!

Remember to call your location to verify the dates they are giving away the free meals for Veterans Day.

"What time of day are the Veterans Day free meals?"

It really varies from restaurant to restaurant what time of day you can get your free meal. Some meals are only valid during lunch, during dinner, or for breakfast. Some of the offers last all day long.

If you aren't sure, call where you're planning on going to see when the best time to come by is.

"Do all locations participate in the Veterans Day free meals?"

This varies from restaurant to restaurant. Some locations will participate nationwide and for others, it's up to individual owners. Please call your exact location before heading out so you know if they're participating.

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