Many thanks to my friend Doug Nordman, author of The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Early Retirement. Because he's a retiree, he sometimes gets information that I can't access, like this list of upcoming retiree events. I appreciate that he is willing to share this type of information with me, so I can share it with you.
Most (every?) military installation has some sort of retiree activities office. They can be big or small, and have a lot of resources or hardly any at all. Some do these types of events, and some don't.
What are these events? According to Doug,
"The format varies widely. Sometimes it's a job fair, other times the medical clinic is handing out free flu shots. The local vets organizations almost always send a VSO to discuss VA disability claims, and occasionally the VA sends a rep. The Retiree Affairs Office announces their volunteer opportunities, and local businesses may donate swag or discounts."
Even you don't see an event listed for a location near you, do a quick internet search for "retiree activities office" and the name of the base. Give them a call, make sure they have your email contact details, learn about what they're doing, and maybe even help them out a bit.
NSA Midsouth, Millington, TN Event Seminar/Job Fair 0800-1400, Saturday, 17 Sep 2016 Pat Thompson Conference Center POC: email@example.com
NAS Lemoore CA Retired Appreciation Day 0900. Saturday, 24 September 2016 Station Theater, 824 Hancock Circle POC: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone Number: 559-998-2745
Air National Guard Base, Selfridge, MI Retiree Appreciation Day 0800, Saturday, 24 September 2016 Dining Facility, bldg. 164, 43156 Wagner Street POC: email: 5 email@example.com Phone: 586-239-5580
New London, CT Retire Appreciation Day 0900-1200, Saturday 15 October 2016 Sub Base New London Dealy Center (Base Auditorium) POC: firstname.lastname@example.org
Naval Air Station Pensacola, FL Retiree Seminar 0900-1200, Saturday, 29 Oct 2016 Mustin Beach Club POC: 850-452-5618., DSN: 459-5618
Naval Base San Diego, CA Retiree Seminar 0800-1330, Saturday, 29 Oct 2016 Anchors Catering Conference Center 2375 Recreation Way, Bldg. 3210 San Diego, CA. 92136 RSVP: 858-277-4259
Luke Air Force Base, Phoenix, AZ Retiree Appreciation Day 0800-1300, Saturday, 29 October 2016 Location: Navy Operations Support Center (NOSC) POC: Bill Best, 623-856-3923/6827; email: email@example.com
Also, Doug tells me that he receives this information via email from the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS). If DFAS is sending out email information to retirees, it seems like it would be wise to be on that email list. It seems that it is managed through the myPay system. If you don't yet have a myPay account, this would be a good reason to establish one. If you do have a myPay account, take a minute to ensure that your email address is correct.
Let me know if you've ever been to one of these events. I have not, and I am very curious to hear what you think. Hope you enjoy!