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Here's How Woody's Roadside Tavern Celebrated Veterans Day Weekend - Minus The NFL

When sporting events on patriotic holidays come to mind, it’s natural for thoughts to turn to the ways that the various teams and leagues do a solid job of honoring our nation’s veterans. While that was certainly the case this weekend for Veterans Day, it simply didn’t feel the same.

Every NFL stadium and team did a nice job of honoring our nation’s vets, but the mood was quite different. So why was that?

It can easily be traced back to the controversy over the various National Anthem protests that NFL players have engaged in. While there are few folks that will deny the rights of the players to express themselves, there remains something jarring about the sight of highly-paid men disrespecting the flag and anthem for unclear reasons.

While that’s not necessarily the intent of the players, it’s a tough visual for scores of observers to wrap their heads around.

As Veterans Day approached, there was a ton of chatter about tuning out NFL games as a sort of counter protest. At least one establishment took that ball and ran with it.

As Independent Journal Review shares, Woody's Roadside Tavern in New Jersey decided to forego the broadcasting of this weekend’s games. While that was a big risk for the bar’s owners to take, they came up with an outstanding way to keep patrons interested.

Instead of the games being a highlight of the weekend, the owners decided to hold a benefit to raise money for veterans, and they even brought in local country band After the Reign to provide entertainment.

The bar made its decision clear to customers beforehand with a poster announcing the day’s festivities.

“On November 12, 2017 Woody’s will not be broadcasting NFL games. Instead, we will host a fundraiser for Special Forces Association Chapter 19,” the sign read in part.

The event was a big hit, as customers came in from miles around to offer up their support. A portion of the proceeds was donated, and owners Chris Maltese, Jennifer Knapp, and Rob Johnson were quite pleased with how things turned out.

The trio would go on to appear on ‘Fox & Friends’ to discuss the event and its success.

“Yesterday was the pinnacle of my life, to do something for the veterans first-hand in a local community,” Johnson said.

This was a fantastic way for the owners and patrons of Woody’s to get their message out there, and they were able to raise money for a fantastic cause to boot. There’s a gigantic lesson in there for the NFL players that still insist on kneeling or sitting when the anthem plays: where there’s a will, there’s a way.

If the players hope to inspire change, they’ll have a lot better shot at making that happen if they actually put some effort into it.

There’s plenty of NFL players that go above and beyond the call of duty to help with causes they are passionate about. The anthem protesters can do the exact same thing, and they might find themselves pleasantly surprised with the support they receive from the public if they find a less contentious way to inspire change.

Source: Independent Journal Review
Photos: Google, U.S. Air Force photo, Woody's Tavern, YouTube, Keith Allison/Wikimedia

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