Anheuser-Busch's "Here's To The Heroes Tour 2005" To Visit Leonardtown Veteran's Day Celebration - Southern Maryland Headline News

Anheuser-Busch's "Here's To The Heroes Tour 2005" To Visit Leonardtown Veteran's Day Celebration


Cross-Country Tour Allows Millions of Americans to Salute Nation’s Troops as Part of "America Supports You" Program

Eight Clydesdales, exotic animals from SeaWorld and Busch Gardens, a mobile television studio and thousands of everyday citizens will join together to send messages of pride and appreciation from Maryland to our nation's troops as part of Anheuser-Busch's "Here's to the Heroes Tour 2005." The tour will visit Leonardtown, Md., Nov. 10-12, for the annual Veteran’s Day Parade. The exhibit and Budweiser Clydesdales will be stationed at the St. Mary's County Fairgrounds and will be open daily for public viewing.

Anheuser-Busch’s “Here’s to the Heroes Tour 2005” interactive exhibit features a mobile recording studio which traveled the nation this summer collecting personal messages of support for the U.S. troops overseas. The messages are being played on American Forces Radio and Television Service on U.S. bases in more than 177 countries. The exhibit also chronicles Anheuser-Busch’s 150-year commitment to the military.

The initial “Here’s to the Heroes Tour” traveled more than 17,600 miles and collected messages from more than 10,000 Americans. Due to overwhelming public response, the Heroes Tour has been extended to include seven more cities for a total of more than 30,000 miles.

Visitors to the exhibit age 21 and over who recorded a message were entered into a drawing to receive a Clydesdales visit to their hometown or location of their choice. The two sweepstakes winners were randomly selected in July. Winner Julie Trask of Lexington Park, Md. chose to invite the Clydesdales to walk in the Leonardtown Veterans’ Day Parade, while winner Olga Spurgeon of Universal City, Texas chose to host a special ceremony in honor her father, Porfirio Quesada, a 21-year Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient.

“We hope this salute serves as a small token of our heartfelt appreciation to our nation’s military for all the sacrifices they and their families make on a daily basis,” said August Busch IV, president, Anheuser-Busch, Inc. “It’s important for our military to know they have our nation’s support. They fight for the freedom we enjoy every day, and we should never take that freedom or our American way of life for granted. All of us at Anheuser-Busch are proud our company has consistently supported our U.S. troops for more than 150 years. Programs like the ‘Here’s to the Heroes Tour’ serve as a fitting extension of those efforts.”

Visitors will be filmed individually in a 10-foot by 10-foot recording studio for their own 10- to 30-second greetings to the troops and can select one of three background images for their messages. The messages are then played on American Forces Radio and Television Service (AFRTS) at U.S. military outposts in more than 177 countries worldwide and on the Pentagon Channel which reaches 150 military bases in the United States. Select videos also appear on Budweiser.com.

“Budweiser has been overwhelmed with the emotional response we’ve received from the public and from U.S. troops overseas to the messages collected during the ‘Here’s to the Heroes Tour.’ We feel it is important for American companies and everyday Americans to step up and let the troops know we support them,” said Rocky Sickmann, director of Military Sales, Anheuser-Busch, Inc. “Everyone from mothers, fathers and families of active duty servicemen and women, to those who don’t know anyone in the military, to firemen, policemen, mayors and senators, and celebrities like comedian Tom Arnold and Chipper Jones of the Atlanta Braves, have all delivered heartfelt and energetic messages of support for the men and women serving our nation during the tour.”

The “Here’s to the Heroes Tour 2005” is a proud member of the Department of Defense’s America Supports You program, an ongoing nationwide program that showcases and communicates America’s support to the men and women of the Armed Forces.

“We are grateful to Anheuser-Busch for their long history of commitment to our armed forces,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Allison Barber. “The ‘Here’s to the Heroes Tour’ is a great way to remind our deployed men and women and their families they have home-front support.”

The mobile exhibit features a display that details the company’s 150-year history of military support. Personal messages of thanks to supporters at home given by troops overseas play on two large screens at each end of the display.

The “Here’s to the Heroes Tour 2005” comes on the heels of the company’s extension of its “Hero Salute” program, which offers a single-day complimentary admission to any one of Anheuser-Busch’s SeaWorld, Busch Gardens or Sesame Place parks to members of the military and as many as three direct dependents throughout 2005.

Since the launch of the Department of Defense’s America Supports You program last November, more than 1.4 million Americans, including individual citizens, businesses and organizations, have logged onto the AmericaSupportsYou.mil Web site to register the activities and projects in their communities that show their support for America’s Armed Forces, especially those serving in harm’s way. Every person who registers on the site receives an America Supports You dog tag to wear as a visible sign of support. The America Supports You dog tags feature the program logo on a military style dog tag. On average, 700 people a day are signing up to receive the America Supports You dog tag.

Based in St. Louis, Anheuser-Busch Cos., Inc. is the leading American brewer holding nearly 50 percent of the U.S. beer market. The company is American-owned and brews the world’s largest-selling beers, Budweiser and Bud Light. Anheuser-Busch ranked first in the U.S. beverage industry in FORTUNE magazine’s 2005 “America’s Most Admired Companies” and in the top 30 on FORTUNE’s 2005 “Global Most Admired Companies” list. The company is one of the largest theme park operators in the United States, is a major manufacturer of aluminum cans and is the world’s largest recycler of aluminum beverage containers. For more information, visit http://www.anheuser-busch.com

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