On Saturday, May 25, the Texas State Railroad will host its 15th annual Salute to the Armed Forces event at the Palestine Depot. The event pays tribute to all branches and all eras of U.S. military service.

The event features military re-enactments, living history exhibits, military displays, support groups and equipment displays by first responders. It will feature military re-enactment groups from multiple wars, living history exhibits, static military displays, military support groups and equipment displays by area first responders.

The day starts off with a flag raising ceremony at 9 a.m. A veteran’s memorial ceremony will occur at 11am. There's a number of demonstrations  throughout the day too. The day’s events will end with a retrieval of colors.

At 11 a.m. the Texas State Railroad will honor those who have served or are currently serving in the military with a FREE ride on the Piney Woods Steam Excursion! These rides are good for departures from both the Palestine and Rusk depots.

That evening The Patriot Train will depart at 7pm, following a reception in the portico at 6:30. The meal for this special, patriotic-themed dinner train will be catered by Contemporary Catering of Palestine.

Entrance to the event is free. Parking is $5 per vehicle.

Event participants are still being accepted. For more information and to sign up, contact Janet Gregg at 903-683-3093 or jgregg@texasstaterr.com. All participants this year will get first option at booth space next year when the AVTT – American Veterans Travelling Tribute will be on display. AVTT’s Traveling Wall is the largest Wall replica traveling the USA.

The Traveling Wall, an 80 percent scale version of the Viet Nam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. has 14 flags flying overhead, is 360 feet long, eight feet tall and contains every name etched on the original. The total “Cost of Freedom" exhibit also includes 190 feet of additional stand up displays honoring all veterans and those serving today.