(Sept. 19, 2011)

NEWBURGH, N.Y. — It was the perfect day for thousands to come out and say thank you to the men and women of the military.

A picnic was held Sunday in Newburgh for Stewart Military Appreciation Day. ShopRite supermarkets, as well as the Bonura Hospitality Group, donated all the food for the event.

Organizers cooked for and fed more than 6,000 service members from the New York Air National Guard, the Marines, and their families.They say it’s their way of saying “thanks” for all of the service members’ hard work and dedication.

“Think of all the events that have happened here over the last month and all the help they provided to the municipalities with the flooding and all that the air national guard has done. So they are involved with everything, they make a big difference in everyone’s lives and it’s great that we can do something small to make a big difference in theirs,” said Tom Urtz, Vice President of Human Resources Community Affairs for ShopRite.

The event is held every three years at the Air National Guard Base.