PRG holds Military Appreciation Fest

Military appreciation fest
Published: Jun. 26, 2022 at 12:15 AM CDT
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CALLAWAY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Saturday was a day of celebration for military members throughout the Bay County community.

“You don’t have this community if you don’t have military, and the military is this community. So you know it’s a group like this so that’s why we’re doing this,” Andy Seagal, Panhandle Restaurant Group Community Relations Director said.

A military presence can be found throughout the Bay County community.

“It’s important especially in this town to let them know how much we care. Because there is no business in this area that’s not touched by military personnel,” Seagal said.

Folks gathered at the RibCrib in Callaway on Saturday for the military appreciation festival hosted by the Panhandle Restaurant Group.

Officials say despite the rainy weather that day, this event was going to happen rain or shine.

“It’s happening, hey I come from a football background, you don’t call a ball game because of weather. You don’t call this because of the weather, so let’s go,” Seagal said.

Purple Heart recipient Ryan Blackwell, was one of the guest speakers at the event.

Blackwell survived the terrorist attack on NAS Pensacola back in 2019 and gave his testimony.

“Being able to provide insight on different situations, where you’re the point one percent in a bad situation. You can still find your way out it’s a good testimony,” Blackwell said.

For Blackwell, sharing this story with other military members has a sense of power to it.

“It’s powerful, you know a lot of the guys who were my mentors now, it’s almost like you’re kinda giving them back a little bit of mentoring and it’s pretty cool to see the full circle,” Blackwell said.

If there is one takeaway Blackwell hopes will resonate with folks...

“Never count yourself out, you’re always in the fight,” Blackwell said.

PRG plans to make this an annual event.

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