Fleet Week San Diego 2021
This November marks another year of the popular fleet week celebration in San Diego, which is expected to attract thousands of spectators from all over. Preparations are in full gear, and ships and tech equipment from the United States Navy and Coast Guard are on the way. The city can hardly wait for the celebrations to begin.
But while the annual celebration is a spectacular display of patriotic splendor, you may be wondering, “What is this all about?” or “How did it all begin?” You’re not alone. Everyone’s curious about the history and purpose of this noisy yet heartfelt custom. Here’s a quick rundown of Fleet Week and why it is one of the most-awaited and appreciated events in San Diego.
What Is Fleet Week?
Fleet Week is a lot of things. On the surface, it aims to recognize and celebrate the military’s men and women through entertaining public activities for alliances that support and appreciate these heroes. Think of it as a tribute to the troops and a goodwill mission between the military and civilians.
Both are given a week to immerse themselves in the other’s environment. While city dwellers enjoy ship excursions and military demonstrations, the fleet week presents a chance for military personnel to experience the sunny city’s culture and scenic beauty.
Behind the official gloss, it’s when many of our military heroes see the ship’s exterior for the first time in a long time. So, naturally, Fleet Week turns into a week-long bash in the city. The party truly starts after the sun sets with loud music and loads of fun for all.
Origin of Fleet Week in San Diego: A Walk Down the History Lane
Despite the fact that San Diego is home to over 100,000 active-duty sailors and Marines, fleet weeks are super hyped in cities like New York and San Francisco, while the celebrations in San Diego don’t get the same level of national exposure. We do, however, have a history dating back to 1908 when the “Great White Fleet” of President Theodore Roosevelt first anchored at Coronado.
To see the sight, manypeople boarded special trains and excursion boats.Well-wishers showered the sailors with flowers and fruits. While San Diego was not the fleet’s sole stop in the United States, it was the first after sailing around the point of South America from Virginia’s start. The commotion was dubbed “fleet week” in at least one item in The San Diego Union newspaper.
Local officials claim that San Diego staged the nation’s first formal Fleet Week nearly three decades later. It was held in connection with the California Pacific International Exposition, which took place in 1935. For the June 1935 event, at least 114 Navy ships docked in San Diego, bringing 63,000 officers and sailors ashore.
A headline on the main page of the Union described the “coming of a massive fleet.” Thousands of servicemen were almost hanging down the edges of ships as they awaited shore.
By the 1990s, San Diego had established itself as a key component of the Navy’s Pacific Fleet. The Marine Corps made the region prominent because of Camp Pendleton and the Marine boot camp near San Diego. The San Diego Chamber of Commerce hosted “Accolades,” which were regular gratitude parties for enlisted troops. A long-running yearly chamber gala for generals and admirals was also held.
In 1997, a semi-formal organization called Fleet Week San Diego was developed to take over event planning. The San Diego Fleet Week Foundation was established as a separate nonprofit in 2001. Fleet Week events grew and flourished under this organization’s leadership.
What to Expect at San Diego Fleet Week?
According to Fleet Week executive director Brian Sack, current festivities in San Diego are centered on showing thanks to troops and their families in recognition of extended deployments and challenges throughout the recent war years.
This year, Fleet Week is resurgent, with its main event, the Sea & Air Parade, returning on Sept 10. The Sea & Air Parade is expected to take this year’s commemoration of service people and their families to a new level. The week is also packed with other public and military events. Here are some highlights:
SDMAC Breakfast (Nov 5): The San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC) breakfast features significant civilian and military speakers from the Department of Defense, the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. The gathering offers a chance to hear from knowledgeable professionals and meet and network with 400+ military and civilian business leaders from the local community.
Innovation Zone (Nov 4-6):The Fleet Week Innovation Zone will be located in the Port Pavilion Building during Fleet Week 2021. It will display cutting-edge high-tech equipment used for both military and civilian purposes. The engaging event is a learning experience – a popular draw for people of all ages.
Military Family Day (Nov 7):Hosted by Lincoln Military Housing, Military Family Day will take place at the Broadway Pier, featuring games and activities for military families.
Boat Parade (Nov 11):It is a Veterans Day celebration event, and everyone is invited. The trophy will go to the best-decorated boats in different military and patriotic themes. The event is family-friendly and free.
So, are you ready to celebrate the real hero of the USA? For more information regarding Fleet Week activities, visit Fleet Week San Diego.
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