Sailors Arrive for Fleet Week 2011

Every fall, fleets of uniformed sailors flood the streets of San Francisco to mingle with the local land-lubbers. This Fleet Week is especially important, as Naval Aviation will be celebrating 100 years of existence. As always, there will be many excellent free events for everyone.

Photo by sam.soneja CC BY-SA 2.o

On Thursday October 6, Fleet Week kicks off with the Blue Angels’ practice air show from 1pm to 5pm, which will give spectators a peek at what tricks the team will be showing off on Saturday and Sunday. Air show practice will repeat on Friday from 12:30pm to 4pm. Meanwhile the Navy Band Southwest will be playing at Pier 39, followed by a meet and greet with the Blue Angels  in front of the Aquarium of the Bay at 7pm.

On Saturday the big celebrations begin with the Parade of Ships at 11am, starting at the Golden Gate Bridge and sailing along the northern San Francisco coast. Anywhere along the northern coast is a decent spot to post up and watch the parade, however the area between Pier 39 and the big arrow at the Embarcadero is the best. If you stay in place until at least 12:30, you’ll have a view of the Blue Angels’ air show as well, which runs until 4pm. The exciting tricks and excellent skill of the Blue Angels’ team are worth watching. You can catch a rerun of the same air show on Sunday–if you want to watch from a different vantage point and enjoy some live entertainment, Ghirardelli Square is a great option. Otherwise, head to Crissy Field in The Presidio. (Let’s hope for good weather.) Ship tours will be held from Saturday to Monday in select ships from 8am until 4pm, with entrance limited to ages 8 and up. There are early evening festivities too, including the Marine Band’s concert at Huntington Park from 6pm to 7pm.

On Sunday evening, the 49ers game will include a very special “Salute to the Fleet.” The Marine Band will play as fans enter Candlestick Park, and the National Anthem will be sung by a member of the Coast Guard. During the halftime celebration, the Blue Angels’ F-18’s will fly over the stadium and 20 future Marines and Sailors will be sworn in on the field. Tuesday will bring Fleet Week to a close when all ships depart San Francisco.

RELATED LINKS

Fleet Week Official Website

Ghirardelli Square Fleet Weekend

Are you ready for Fleet Week? What events will you go to? Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook for updates on what we’re covering. You can stay on top of exciting events from around the world by downloading the eventseekr app for Android, iPhone or Ovi.

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About Katie Kopacz
Blog Intern. Creative Writing student at San Francisco State University. When she's not busy with one of the aforementioned occupations, Katie can be found geeking out over good music, good food, conspiracy theories, cats, and well-written words.

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