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WWE heads to Norfolk, sailors get free tix

Nov. 24, 2012 - 09:07AM   |   Last Updated: Nov. 24, 2012 - 09:07AM  |  
World Wrestling Entertainment's "Tribute to the Troops" will be taped Dec. 9 in Norfolk, Va.
World Wrestling Entertainment's "Tribute to the Troops" will be taped Dec. 9 in Norfolk, Va. (WWE photo)
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Tickets for WWE’s "Tribute to the Troops" will be available free to active-duty personnel and their families stationed at these Virginia installations:
• Naval Station Norfolk.
• Naval Air Station Oceana.
• Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek/Fort Story.
• Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads.
• Naval Medical Center Portsmouth.
• Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
• Naval Weapons Station Yorktown.
Source: Navy Region Mid-Atlantic

Sailors and their families in and around the Norfolk, Va., area can score free tickets to a long-running touring holiday spectacular coming Dec. 9 to the Scope Arena.

But if you're expecting Rockettes and Christmas carols, think again.

World Wrestling Entertainment will tape its 10th annual "Tribute to the Troops" special in Norfolk, bringing along a range of celebrity guests from singer Kid Rock to rapper Flo Rida to the Muppets in addition to its regular cast of superstars including John Cena, CM Punk and The Big Show. The event will be broadcast Dec. 19 on USA Network as a two-hour special, then cut to one hour for a Dec. 22 airing on NBC.

Free tickets will be available to active-duty sailors and their families through Navy Morale, Welfare and Recreation offices and be distributed through some commands.

Tickets are expected to be available around Dec. 1, said Beth Baker, spokeswoman for Navy Region Mid-Atlantic. Specific details on how to acquire tickets were still being finalized as of press time. Baker said to follow the Flagship Newspaper or Navy Region Mid-Atlantic on Facebook for updates and further instructions. Baker said the arena will seat about 13,000, and there will be reserved spots for sailors in uniform.

"We are honored to bring our unique brand of family-friendly entertainment to those who have sacrificed so much for our country," said WWE chairman and CEO Vince McMahon in a news release announcing the event.

The inaugural 2003 special was taped in Baghdad; subsequent events were recorded in either Iraq or Afghanistan until 2010, when the in-ring action shifted stateside to Fort Hood, Texas, and clips of WWE stars touring the war zone were featured on the special.

A similar setup is expected this year, with McMahon, "Real World" reality star-turned-wrestler Mike "The Miz" Mizanin and others making a goodwill visit to troops overseas that'll be taped for the December broadcast.

WWE performers will tour Norfolk-area bases Dec. 6-9, according to WWE spokesman Kevin Hennessy, who said the schedule of events hasn't been set. The visit will include an anti-bullying rally under the "Be a STAR" banner a group co-founded by WWE and the nonprofit Creative Coalition.

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