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Creative Arts Festival winners in Colorado

One hundred twenty-five gold medal-winning Veterans descended upon the Aurora-Denver area for the 2024 National Veterans Creative Arts Festival, May 11-18, 2024. 

Co-presented by VA and the American Legion Auxiliary, the festival is the culmination of VA facility competitions in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music for Veterans enrolled in the VA national health care system.

At the festival, Veterans may exhibit their artwork and original writings or perform musical, dance or dramatic selections in a live stage show performance. All Veterans invited to participate are selected winners of a national creative arts competition in which nearly 3,000 Veterans entered their creative expressions in local competitions across 125 VA medical facilities.

Judges reviewed over 6,000 submissions and awarded 159 first, second and third places honors.

Competition recognizes rehabilitation goals

VA medical facilities incorporate creative arts into their therapy programs to further the rehabilitation goals for both inpatients and outpatients. This annual competition recognizes the progress and recovery made through that therapy and raises the visibility of the creative achievements of our nation’s Veterans.

Rickey Ransom is a Marine Corps Veteran and spoken word enthusiast from Dallas.  “This competition gives me the golden opportunity to use the gift God gave me,” he said. “By participating, I share my testimony with other Veterans through spoken word.” Ransom won first place in VA North Texas Health Care System’s creative arts competition. His grandmother had him memorize poems to recite in their church’s Easter program. His return to the Creative Arts Festival is a testament to his personal growth and dedication.

Many stories are shared throughout the week as the Veterans participate in various workshops, activities and whole health sessions. The local and national sponsors also provide the Veterans and companions the opportunity to learn about the local area through outings.

“Being at the festival means a lot to me,” said North Carolina Veteran Kijuan Amey. “Music is my escape.”

The week’s highlight is the Stage Show Performance and the Art and Writing Exhibition, both open to the public.  For highlights of the festival, follow Adaptive Sports and Arts – U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Welcome to your local American Legion! We will no longer be open for dinner on Mondays and Tuesdays.

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