Lakamp’s Tribute to the Troops set for March 25
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A show to bring a long-awaited “welcome home” to those who experienced the worst of times in a divided country, Elizabeth Lakamp’s Tribute to the Troops is set for March 25 at Union United Methodist Church McKinley Hall.
The show recognizes Vietnam Veterans Day on March 29 and is the nonprofit of Troy native, vocalist and entertainer Lakamp. A performer in the greater St. Louis area for more than 25 years, in 2014 she began entertaining for the Greater St Louis Honor Flight where a commander asked her to create a show for Vietnam veterans, according to a news release announcing the event.
The performance grew to a large-scale production with dinner, veterans displays and other features. The production was put on hiatus when the pandemic struck, but Lakamp hopes to bring the patriotic event back on a yearly basis moving forward.
“I hope to offer this every year for Vietnam Veterans Day, but for now this is the only one I am doing in 2023” Lakamp said. “I think there should be enough local support to have a sellout crowd but if only a few veterans are blessed by the event, then it was worth it.”
Vietnam Veterans Day, March 29, was established by law in 2017 and recognizes the last day combat troops were withdrawn from that nation. Often, the holiday is overlooked, according to the release. Thus, Lakamp offers a show that brings a “welcome home” feel. In addition to patriotic performances, the show will feature music, old shows and even commercials from the era.
“This show is interactive, educational, and mostly lighthearted. I want to bring back the feeling of brotherhood, not war,” Lakamp said. “It really is a lot of fun for everyone, even if you aren’t from a military background.”
New this year is a Wall of Honor / Remembrance wall where guests are encouraged to put their loved one’s name on a star. Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 458 will have displays and memorabilia at the event and other veterans service organizations are expected as well. Attendance prizes, raffles and other fun activities will also be featured.
Doors will open at 12:30 p.m. the day of the event. At 2 p.m. colors will be presented with the show to follow. Tickets are available at entertainmentbyelizabeth.com as well the Troy/Maryville/St. Jacob/Marine Chamber of Commerce in Troy, the Jarvis (Troy) Senior Center or the drive-up window at What The Cup.