Arena Stage Presents 7th Annual Military Thanksgiving Dinner

Friday November 24, 2017

Every year hundreds of D.C.-area military families must spend the Thanksgiving holiday away from loved ones. In gratitude for their service, Arena Stage is inviting wounded warriors, service men and women and their families to a complimentary dinner and performance of the musical comedy "The Pajama Game" at the Mead Center for American Theater (1101 Sixth St., SW) on Friday, November 24. Since the first Military Thanksgiving in 2011, Arena Stage has served more than 1,000 military members and their families with the annual event.

The evening will include remarks from Retired Army General Carter F. Ham, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Association of the United States Army.

"It's a time of year when people come together and create family -- sometimes with blood relatives and often with people who share a common bond," shares Executive Director Edgar Dobie. "We hope that Arena has created a family with members of the military and that they will find some joy gathering for a meal and a good show at our house."

The evening will begin with a 5:30 p.m. cocktail reception featuring a performance by military musicians and the presentation of the colors. A seated, three-course dinner will be prepared and served by Ridgewells Catering at 6 p.m., and guests will enjoy a performance of "The Pajama Game" at 8 p.m.

Arena Stage is working primarily through the USO-Metro to distribute the tickets irrespective of rank. Additional tickets are distributed through the Washington, D.C.-Virginia Medical Center Caregiver Support Program and the Southeast Veterans Service Center. It is anticipated that about 200 service men and women and their families will experience this special event.

Military Thanksgiving is generously sponsored by Lockheed Martin. Additional support is provided by Raytheon, Discovery Communications, David Bruce Smith in honor of Max Smith, Clark Construction, GEICO, Enterprise Holdings and The Wawa Foundation.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 97,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation's net sales in 2016 were $47.2 billion.

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Director Edgar Dobie, is a national center dedicated to American voices and artists. Arena Stage produces plays of all that is passionate, profound, deep and dangerous in the American spirit, and presents diverse and ground-breaking work from some of the best artists around the country. Arena Stage is committed to commissioning and developing new plays and impacts the lives of over 10,000 students annually through its work in community engagement. Now in its seventh decade, Arena Stage serves a diverse annual audience of more than 300,000.

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