Community, veterans gather for VetFest 2023

Veterans, first responders and families gathered at East Bank Festival Plaza for the 4th annual VetFest.
Published: Nov. 11, 2023 at 9:57 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 11, 2023 at 10:17 PM CST
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BOSSIER CITY, La. (KSLA) - Multiple events celebrating Veterans Day kicked off across the ArkLaTex today, including VetFest in Bossier City. It’s an annual, fun-filled event for those who served.

Veterans, first responders and families gathered at East Bank Festival Plaza for the celebration.

The event, hosted by Got Your Six Louisiana, featured live music, guest speakers and local vendors. Organizers say the purpose of the festival is to provide resources and assistance to veterans.

“VetFest allows us to unite our local first responder community to ensure they are informed and have access to the organizations that exist solely to serve them, bridging the gap between our heroes and the help they need to live happy and healthy lives while offering a platform to meet and interact with others just like themselves,” according to the Got Your Six website.

All of the funds raised at VetFest 2023 will be awarded to the Guitars for Vets Organization.

“You know, if they have any mental health issues, if they have any time of disability, any type of medical issues, financial issues, finding a job, anything like that, that’s why we’re bringing all of the vendors in and assistance to one location at one time, so they can see what’s available for their assistance,” said Tim Sloan, the founder of VetFest.

“What we do is we take veterans who have PTSD, and we teach them how to play a guitar. We give them the gift of music to our heroes instead of more medication,” said Carl Townley, of Guitar for Vets. “And so we’re fighting PTSD and other mental health issues by teaching them how to play a guitar, and with music. at no cost to the veteran.”