Continue Fleet Week tradition

Published 9:45 pm Monday, October 14, 2019

At first blush, holding Fleet Week in what’s known as “America’s Navy Town” might seem a bit superfluous. After all, most people who live in Hampton Roads are familiar with the Navy’s constant presence and appreciate everything the Navy does for our country.

However, those without a close connection to the military may not know everything they could know about the Navy in Hampton Roads, and there’s never a bad time for the Navy to give back to the communities that support it. Hence, we have Fleet Week in one of the most military-heavy areas in the world.

Among the many activities this week will be Fleet Fest at Naval Station Norfolk from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The base will open its gates to the general public for free guided ship tours, a car show, a chili cook-off, music, food trucks, children’s activities and more. For civilians in the area, it will be a great time to get up close and personal with the ships you have only seen from afar.


Email newsletter signup

But Navy personnel are also spending part of this week getting out into the community rather than having the community come to the ships.

Sailors volunteered at 66 schools in the region on Friday in celebration of the Navy’s 244th birthday on Sunday. Activities included raising the morning colors, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and reading to students, among other classroom activities.

In Suffolk, Kilby Shores, Hillpoint and Northern Shores elementary schools all benefited from visits by sailors. At Kilby Shores Elementary School, Petty Officer 2nd Class Kokeithia Humphrey, who is stationed at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, read to more than a dozen 4- and-5-year-old students in Early Start teacher Christine Posey’s classroom and helped in art teacher Angie Salerno’s classroom. She said she enjoyed how energetic the students were.

The educators enjoyed the experience, as well. “We appreciate any help they can give us and for their service for our country,” Kilby Shores Principal Lorri Banks said.

We’re appreciative of the sailors’ volunteer efforts during Fleet Week and hope they continue this tradition for many years.