Traditionally known as a day of fireworks, picnics and getting together with friends, Independence Day now has a new meaning for several military spouses: a day of pampering.
Sponsored by the Rose Bowl Legacy Foundation in conjunction with 870-AM, about 30 military spouses were treated to a variety of pleasantries at the Rose Bowl on the morning of July 4.
Lauren Hall, marketing specialist for the Rose Bowl, said the event — the first of its kind — was designed to keep participants’ minds off of everything.
“They’ve come to enjoy breakfast and coffee,” Hall said. “It’s a day they’ve come to relax without children, without spouses, without worrying about anything.”
In store for the group is pampering everybody with sessions of yoga and meditation, manicures and massages.
Hall also said the Fourth of July was picked as the obvious choice for the event to overlap the ideas of patriotism and summer fun.
“It’s so important because these are the people who get forgotten,” said Hall, who noted that 10 participants were selected by 870-AM, while 20 were chosen by local organizations. “They are the support and strength back here at home while their spouses go off and fight for our country. What better day to do it!”
Pamela Tyus, director of marketing and promotions, said helping those in the military and affiliated with the military is a cause dear to the talk radio station’s heart.
“The military means a lot to the legacy and to AM 870,” said Tyus, who added that all 30 winners hail from Southern California. “We have a contingent of listeners who are active military and retired military. When we decided to put this on, it was exciting to partner with them to do something for these [spouses].”
Tyus notes it is tough for military spouses to get through each day not knowing where their significant other is on the map or how they are doing, which can bring on much stress and worrying.
“It’s a whole extra job to hold down home, kids, the bills,” Tyus said. “The thought that you have to live that life with that worry and with that lack of contact of your loved one, I can’t imagine it. So, we wanted to do something for these [people].”
One participant was Alanna Martinez of Irvine. Martinez’s husband is a Marine and they have two small children. During their four-year marriage and before, her husband has been deployed to Iraq, Georgia and Belize.
She said while she does tend to worry about him, she tries to think of what tasks she has at hand to get through until she sees him or hears from him again.
“It’s really focusing on what I need to do to be a good mother and be a good support to my husband,” Martinez said. “Yes, it’s tough on him being away from his family and being deployed, but I need to be his support.”
Martinez added she enjoyed the pampering as it’s something she never gets to do anymore.
“It’s a beautiful day,” she said. “It’s nice. We’re very fortunate to attend this event. … Especially being a mom, your children are going to be your priority. But this is great. I love it.”
Janet Dang of La Crescenta is also married three years to a Marine, who has been deployed twice to Iraq, and also to Japan, South Korea and Belize.
“It is lovely,” said Dang, who is mother to a little girl. “This is usually not my thing. But I’m excited about it because I don’t typically get pampered. It’s nice to do this … this is very enjoyable.”