The National Veterans Creative Arts Festival has been my golden opportunity since 2004. As an actor, the Festival has given me the opportunity to create and perform with very talented people not only in the cast but staff as well. The Creative Arts Festival competition has tested my abilities and helped me to build on my personal creative history. Participating has also been a great way to share my passion with my family, as well as my community. The Festival also gives me a chance to visit many parts of the country I never seen before. If you are looking for an accepting and grateful audience for your talents, you will find it at the Creative Arts Festival. The welcome and acceptance we receive from the community, sponsors and Veterans Affairs staff is overwhelming.

I urge any Veteran who is an Actor, Dancer, Singer, Musician or Visual Artist to give it a shot, create something and submit it to the competition. I have said this before but the public only sees the military in uniform, walking in a line, all looking the same and cannot see that we all have different talents and skills that make each of us very unique and different. I think of those that have been lost and can’t help to wonder what talents where lost with them. One goal for me is to accept this honor of participating in the Festival as a gift I can offer up to them.

The Creative Arts Festival will be taking place October 17-23 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Over 120 Veterans will exhibit their artwork or perform musical, dance, dramatic, or original writing selections. Visit the National Creative Arts Festival website to for daily videos and photographs!

Mike McCann is a U.S. Army Veteran of the Vietnam Era.

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Published on Oct. 17, 2011

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