On July 3rd, over 100 Veteran hikers and dedicated volunteers gathered in Lincoln, NE to hike for the Irreverent Warrior cause - prevent Veteran suicide through connection, camaraderie, and humor.
VET Tv is the proud National Sponsor for Irreverent Warriors in 2021. In addition to a $25,000 donation matching initiative, every ticket to an IW Silkies Hike comes with a free month subscription to VET Tv. REDEEM yours using code 2021LINCOLNNE.
The hike started and ended in downtown Lincoln, with stops along the way at great local staples like The Bar, Boombox Social, Main Street Pub, The Railyard, and Gate 25 Bar and Restaurant.
There were a lot of great moments, but the general consensus for "hike highlight" had to be the chance to do our own walkout in the University of Nebraska's Memorial Stadium. It made it just a little sweeter that we got to do it to Nebraska's Tunnel Walk song. Let's just say state pride is a big deal in this fly-over state.
We had great yard games at lunch - bags, footballs to throw around, frisbees - and every hiker got to partake in a little game of connection where everyone received a playing card and had to try to find their match throughout the duration of the hike.
"GO BIG RED"
The mission of every IW hike is the same – prevent Veteran suicide by bringing Vets together with humor and camaraderie. This hike was the perfect representation of that mission.
The hike coordinators were overwhelmed (in the best way possible) with hikers - both new and old - coming up to them all throughout the day talking about how much they needed the hike - sometimes without realizing it. They talked about how forging connections with so many other Veterans at the hike was life-changing, and at times life-saving. This is why we do what we do.
Thank you to all the local businesses and individuals who provided generous donations of food, drinks, and monetary contributions, or hosted us for stops along the hike!
The University of Nebraska, Lincoln - for allowing us to continue our yearly tradition of having our own tunnel walk out into their Memorial Stadium - a HUGE honor in Nebraska!
The Railyard - for hosting both our start and endpoints. They've been hosting us for years, and continue to be amazing. The space is so unique as an old rail station, a historic site in Lincoln. Every year they outdo themselves with their support, this year even allowing us use of their mega screen to show previous year's videos and words for our sponsors.
Boombox - for being ever-accomodating hosts on our stop at their great space!
The Bar - for being another incredible stop host.
Main Street - for being our final stop on the hike - and continuing to never disappoint with a great atmosphere and welcoming us with open arms!
The Marine Corps League Cornhusker Attachment- for their donation of a safety van AND drivers! They followed us for the entire movement and even offered airport pickup and dropoff! Special shoutout to Randy Meyers with all his help in coordination - but truly hats off to this entire organization.
Wheels 4 Wheels- and Dana Turner for all the amazing door prizes he donated to the hike!
The Veterans Association
Wheels 4 Warriors
American Legion Post 1919
Sponsors & Donors
This hike would not have been possible without our other amazing sponsors!
Veteran Television (VET Tv) - our National Presenting Sponsor this year who donated Free Silkies to giveaway at the hike, and handed out a free month of VET Tv (seriously, did you redeem yours yet?? 2021LINCOLNNE) to every hiker. VET Tv was set up with merch, stickers, and great conversation with hikers.
Berry Law Firm - was one of our biggest sponsors this year - and every year since 2015, for that matter. They went above and beyond helping us put together our safety video, sharing a hilarious kick-off message via video at the start of the hike, and even providing some of their staff as volunteers to help the day of the hike. Your support is truly unparalleled, and we can't thank you enough!
Hy-vee - for donating water and drinks!
Costco - for their drink and snack donation.
Sams Club - for showering us with more drinks and snacks!
Justin Hitz & Company - for coming through with HUGE amounts of water and Gatorade , plus a van for safety and water.
Subway - for sponsoring our delicious lunch!
Gate 25- for sponsoring our amazing dinner!
Who Made it Possible
JOIN THE DEBAUCHERY
We're gearing up for an even bigger and better hike in Lincoln next year! If you want to get involved, check out the IW-Nebraska Facebook Page, or reach out directly to email@example.com.
If you're looking for more hikes to attend this year (we certainly wouldn't blame you) you can find events in your area on the Irreverent Warriors website.
97% of the proceeds we raise at Irreverent Warriors goes directly to our mission - prevent Veteran suicide through connection, camaraderie, and humor. We're not into spreading awareness - we're into making a difference.
One Shared MissionVET Tv is the proud National Sponsor for Irreverent Warriors in 2021. In addition to a $25,000 donation matching initiative, every ticket to an IW Silkies Hike comes with a free month subscription to VET Tv.
***Blog Photo Credit*** Most blog photos are pulled from the IW-Nebraska Facebook Page and are contributed by hikers and attendees of the event that are happy to share their photos. If one of these photos is yours and you'd like individual credit, please reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can do so!