Fleet Week offers a boatload of opportunities for outreach

It's Fleet Week in New York City. The 19th annual event hits the Big Apple May 24 to 31. Thousands of sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen from the US, as well as international navy ships, are scheduled to participate.

It's Fleet Week in New York City. The 19th annual event hits the Big Apple May 24 to 31. Thousands of sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen from the US, as well as international navy ships, are scheduled to participate.

Fleet Week generates a lot of excitement - Even Carrie Bradshaw and the women of Sex and the City got excited by its prospects. It's a chance for the public to visit the ships that are docked in nearby ports and learn about the history of the US Navy and Coast Guard.

Why does it matter?

There are usually four US Fleet Weeks each year: New York; Fort Lauderdale, FL; San Francisco; and Seattle. Each one organizes outreach events in the particular region.

Lt. Bill Urban, who handles public affairs for Amphibious Group 2, US Navy, says the sailors work with the community to educate people about the history of the Navy and the Marines.

"There are a lot of community relations events going on throughout the region," says Urban. "Sailors are visiting pediatric wards of hospitals, sports competitions put on by the Fischer Cup, the ringing of the bell at the New York Stock Exchange, and a reception hosted by the mayor. This event is about us showing the people of New York all the capabilities of our ships, the great character of our sailors, the technology that we have, and what we're doing to contribute to the global war on terror."

Five facts:

1 USS Kearsarge returns to New York City, having served as the primary Navy unit participating in the city's 1995 Veteran's Day activities, which marked our nation's final tribute to the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II.

2 US Navy and Marine Corps aircrafts are expected to participate in a fly-over during the Parade of Ships in New York Harbor on May 25. Additional fly-overs may include Memorial Day ceremonies in Manhattan on May 29.

3 The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum cohosts the annual Fleet Week with a ceremony on Memorial Day commemorating those who have sacrificed their lives for the country.

4 Eight ships will be coming to New York City ports, including an amphibious assault ship, a cruiser, a destroyer, a British ship, and some Coast Guard cutters. More than 3,500 sailors will flood the city this week.

5 In honor of the 9/11 victims, Marines from the 10th Marine Regiment from Camp Lejeune, NC, will conduct a three-mile cadence run through Lower Manhattan on May 26. Members of the US Coast Guard, NYPD, and FDNY will join them for a wreath laying and prayer service.


 

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