SCHWEINFURT, Germany (July 2, 2013) -- The Sesame Street/USO Experience for Military Families -- The USO's longest running, free traveling tour -- based on Sesame Street's military family initiative is celebrating five years of touring the globe. To get the party started, the tour is traveling to 42 installations in 8 countries in the Europe and Pacific regions, including Schweinfurt.

The tour features several favorite Sesame Street characters as well as Katie, who was created exclusively for this tour and was first introduced to military families in April 2011 by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden at a Joining Forces rally in Columbus, Ohio.

Elmo, Katie and their Sesame Street pals hope everyone will join the celebration by checking out our list of 5 Things You Can Do to Support Military Families.

1. Volunteer at one of the more than 160 USO locations around the world and discover ways to take action locally.

2. Offer to help a military family on the home front who lives on or off base. Whether their lawn needs to be mowed or garbage cans taken in, helping with simple household chores and errands can really relieve some of the stress a family may be feeling.

3. Visit the USO site or their page on Facebook; visitors to these sites can teach their children how they can help support military children in their school.

4. Lend an ear to listen to a military spouse, as sometimes just having someone there to vent to or talk to, can be the greatest support of all.

5. Say thanks to a military member and their family for their service, sacrifice and strength. Troops and their families make sacrifices so the rest of the nation doesn't have to and thanking them can mean a great deal

Produced in partnership with VEE, this year's tour showcases the power of friendship when Elmo and his Sesame Street pals help Katie open up about her fears and excitement as she deals with moving to a new place and making new friends. The show comprises a fun-filled character performance with special giveaways and outreach materials for those who attend.

Since its debut in July 2008, the Sesame Street/USO Experience for Military Families has taken its message to more than 248,000 troops and military families and performed 433 shows on 131 military bases in 33 states and 11 countries.

Upcoming performances include at U.S. Army Garrison Bamberg at 4:30 and 7 p.m. July 12 at the Freedom Fitness Center, at USAG Schweinfurt at 2 p.m. July 14 and 15 at Bldg. 241 and at USAG Ansbach at 2 and 6:30 p.m. July 17 at Katterbach Physical Fitness Center.