What the Troops Love

Screen Shot 2013-02-12 at 10.24.14 AMOur troops love to visit a USO center filled with the comforts of home. This Valentine’s Day, give a gift that keeps giving and shop the USO Wishbook!

Our service members give so much without asking for anything in return. But we know how much they appreciate the little things, like their favorite snack food or the chance to call home. Help the USO make that happen today!

In the Name of Love, USO of Illinois Connects Military Couples

Long deployments away from home can put a strain on military marriages.

To help couples communicate and stay connected, the USO of Illinois wanted to provide an opportunity for some local troops to share a romantic getaway with their spouses.

This center, made up of six locations, came up with a video challenge.

The “How Do I Love Thee?” Valentine’s Day Getaway contest asked troops and spouses to create a creative, compelling video about why they love their valentine.  Contestants entered on Youtube, and the USO of Illinois put the top three videos online for voting.

Today, they announced the two winning couples on their website. Congratulations to Lindsey and Curt Borjas of the U.S. Marine Corps and Mindy and Mark Maroon of the National Guard!

Watch Lindsey and Curt’s winning video:

Watch Mindy and Mark’s winning video:

The lucky couples won a weekend getaway including a romantic carriage ride at the Eaglewood Resort and Spa in Itasca, Illinois.

Thanks to Media, Marketing, and Public Relations Director, Beth Polio and Programs Manager, Dayna Malow, for organizing the contest and making the arrangements with Eaglewood.

The USO of Illinois’ Valentine’s Day contest is just one example of how USO centers around the world work hard to keep military couples and their loved ones connected.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all of America’s troops and families! – Sarah Camille Hipp, Communications Specialist

Share the Love this Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is a holiday to show loved ones how much you care.  Why not also take this opportunity to show our Troops how much you care, too?  The USO makes it easy; there are so many ways to show your support on February 14th and beyond.  Check out our Valentine’s Day suggestions, share your own in the comments section below, and

Share your Valentine’s Day message with our Troops! – It’s easy and only takes a few minutes to show the men and women of the U.S. Military how much you care this holiday.  You can even directly share your unique message with someone you love.

Make a Valentine’s Day donation! – It doesn’t take much to help our Troops stay connected with their loved ones during this and every holiday.  Phone cards, Skype, and our private telephone network are just a few of the ways the USO keeps loved ones in touch, no matter the distance.

USO Phone Call

Your support makes moments like this - a father hearing his baby for the first time - possible at the USO.

Go “shopping” – for a USO Care Package! – You might be snowed in, but visit Causecast & Huffington Post’s “The Goods” store andyou can send a meaningful gift by clicking on “USO Care Package For A U.S. Soldier.”  You can even select to leave a note for the recipient that they’ll receive on Valentine’s Day.

Check out activities at your local USO! – Members of an American Legion Auxiliary League created Valentine’s Day cards for Troops, to be handed out to Troops at the Bob Hope/USO Lounge at Cleveland Hopkins Airport.  Check out our location directory and see what your local USO might have planned.