Where active military, vets can get free food and save July 4th and throughout the year

Kelly Tyko

Businesses across the nation are showing veterans and active-duty military personnel a little love for Independence Day.

To thank them for their service, some stores and restaurants are offering military discounts and freebies to customers who show military identification Thursday.

At some businesses, discharge papers, Veterans Affairs cards and veterans organization membership cards also can be used to prove service.

The discounts are similar to what businesses offer on Veterans Day but on a smaller scale. Some savings extend to spouses and families, and a few military discounts are offered year-round.

Here are discounts available Thursday at participating locations along with a list of ongoing military discounts. To be on the safe side, always check with your closest location before heading out.

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Limited-time military discounts

Here are limited-time military discounts available at participating locations:

Academy Sports + Outdoors: Through Saturday, all active military, military veterans and first responders will receive 10% off their entire purchase.

Bashas'At the Arizona supermarket, when you show the cashier your military ID card and use your Thank You loyalty card, and spend a minimum of $0.10, you'll receive a 10% discount on your groceries.

Blue Star MuseumsThrough Labor Day, active military and their families get free admission at participating museums.

Food City: At the Arizona supermarket, show the cashier your military ID card and spend a minimum of $0.10, you'll receive a 10% discount on your groceries.

Logan's Roadhouse: From 3-6 p.m. Thursday, veterans and active military get a free American Roadhouse Meal. This offer is not available in North Carolina, South Carolina or the Augusta, Georgia, location.

Miller's Ale House50% discount for military members with valid military ID, VA card or DD214 Thursday. Not valid on alcoholic beverages, daily specials, gift cards, taxes or gratuity. One coupon per check, per person. Dine in only.

Ninety Nine Restaurant & Pub: Veterans and active-duty military get a free Standout Starter appetizer Thursday with the purchase of any entrée and with proof of service. 

Omaha Steaks: Active-duty military, retirees, veterans, military spouses and dependents get 10% off Thursday.

Outback Steakhouse: Through Sunday, active military, veterans, police officers and firefighters with valid state or federal identification get 20% off. There’s also a 10% everyday Heroes Discount for servicemen and women, police officers and firefighters.

Quaker Steak & Lube: Participating locations are offering 10-20% discounts for first responders and military personnel Thursday.

Walgreens: Through Sunday, vets, active duty and their families get 20% off regular price items with a free store loyalty card and valid military ID or proof of service.

More deals: Locally owned businesses and regional chains also may have military free meals and discounts. One of the easiest ways to find out is to check restaurants' social media channels.

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Ongoing military discounts

Participation can vary by location and proof of military service is usually required.

A.C. Moore15% off total regular and sale price purchase with valid ID every day.

Advance Auto Parts: 10% off regularly priced items for in-store purchases for active-duty, reserve and retired status members, all veterans receiving VA benefits, spouses and dependent children up to 18 with proof of military status.

AT&T: Qualified active-duty military, reserves, National Guard, veterans, and spouses of active-duty and deceased service personnel can get discounts on eligible plans.

Bass Pro Shops: 5% everyday military discount.

Big 5 Sporting Goods10% off entire purchase for active duty, reserve military, retirees, veterans, spouses and dependent children with military ID or veteran status on driver’s license. In-store only.

Cabela's: 5% everyday military discount.

Champion: Save 20% on most online purchases after verifying military service at www.champion.com.

Chuck E. Cheese's: Military families including active-duty, National Guard, reservists and retired service members get special deals year-round when they show their Common Access Card, Uniformed Services ID Card or Dependent ID Card at restaurants.

Duffy's Sports Grill: Duffy's offers a 40% discount on food purchases to all active duty military, firefighters, and police officers in uniform, all day, every day.

Foot Locker: Save 20% on most online purchases after verifying military service on www.footlocker.com.

General Motors: Learn more about the GM Military Discount program at www.gmmilitarydiscount.com.

HanesSave 20% on most online purchases after verifying military service at www.hanes.com.

Home Depot: Active-duty military, National Guard and reserve, retiree and disabled service members and their spouses, get a 10% everyday discount. Veterans also get a discount for Independence Day.

Home Town BuffetThe chain offers a 15% daily military discount to all active duty, reserve or retired military personnel in uniform or with a valid ID. There's a different discount on Mondays for Military Mondays.

Houlihan's Restaurant + BarWith a military ID, active military members get 15% off food.

Joann Stores: The arts and crafts store offers a 15% year-round discount for military service members and their families.

Kohl’s: Mondays are Military Mondays and active-duty military, retirees, veterans and family members get 15% off in-store when they show a valid military ID, military dependent ID or a veteran ID at checkout. 

Lowe’s: 10% off eligible purchases every day to active military personnel and veterans. Enroll at www.lowes.com/military.

Michaels: 15% discount for military families every day.

Naf Naf Middle Eastern Grill: Active and retired military personnel and first responders including police, fire and paramedic get 15% off Monday with a valid ID.

Nike: Active, veteran, retired and reservists, spouses and dependents of active 4personnel get a 10% military discount at Nike.com and Nike, Converse and Hurley stores. To get the discount online, verification of eligibility is required and a military ID is required to get in-store savings.

Old Time Pottery10% military discount every day to active, retired military and their immediate families.

O'Reilly Auto Parts: In-store discount of 10% off retail price for most items for active duty, reserve members, retired service members and veterans with valid ID. Immediate family members of active duty or veterans are eligible for discount if they have a government issued dependent ID card (DD form 1173 or 1173-1).

Papa Murphy’sAccording to the company’s website, a “limited number of our stores offer various discounts, including senior and military discounts. Please inquire at your local store as this discount is not offered or required at all locations.”

Pep Boys: 10% discount every day for active and retired military with valid military or veteran ID.

Rack Room Shoes: 10% military discount on July 4th and every Tuesday throughout the year with a valid military ID.

Red Robin: Military members who join the Red Robin Royalty Program get special rewards. Sign up at www.redrobin.com/royalty.

Roy Rogers: Active military get a 10% discount daily.

More discounts: Find additional discounts including at hotels and other online retailers at shop.id.me/military and www.sheerid.com, two verification sites. Another option is Veterans Advantage, which offers a one-month free trial. Learn more at www.veteransadvantage.com.

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Follow Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Where active military, vets can get free food and save July 4th and throughout the year