Fleet Week is set to sail into New York Harbor…sans the dynamism and sans the many ships of Fleet Weeks that have sailed by. Dozens of ships once took part in the annual event, but this coming week that number will be down to thirteen. In keeping with the minimalistic arrangement, even the size of the visiting ships has grown smaller. In fact, this will be Fleet Week’s smallest contingent of major combat ships in its 22-year history.
On a brighter note, the USS Intrepid (absent for two years while undergoing renovations) is the guest of honor this year. The aircraft carrier will host the assemblage of visiting ships which include the 40,500-ton helicopter carrier USS Iwo Jima, the missile destroyers USS Roosevelt and USS Vella Gulf (both first time visitors). Joining these in a parade up the Hudson River, will be a Canadian destroyer, three frigates and an oiler, a U.S. Navy patrol craft and two Coast Guard vessels.
“The Navy is saving money, trying to reduce costs,” explained Lt. Lesley Lykins, a Navy spokeswoman