Thousands of people are expected to visit New Orleans next month for Navy Week. It’s the start of events across the country to mark the bicentennial of the War of 1812.
Tall ships, war ships and the Blue Angels will highlight Navy Week. Thousands of sailors will be in the city to help celebrate, while also performing community service at schools and with civic organizations. Mayor Mitch Landrieu says it’s another sign that New Orleans can handle major events.
“It’s going to be a three-year celebration across the nation. It starts here. Our partners have been unbelievable, in the military to the Marines and the Coast Guard. We also have the nations of Canada, France, England, Indonesia and Ecuador. It’s going to be a world-class lineup of events.”
City officials expect about 25,000 people to tour ships docked along the river from the Crescent City Connection to the Esplanade Avenue Wharf. Groups will board ships in the morning; the public in the afternoon. About 50,000 people are expected to line Lake Pontchartrain to watch two Blue Angels afternoon air shows – one Saturday, April 21st, the other Sunday, the 22.nd A seafood cook-off is planned with celebrity chefs, and performances by Navy, Marine and Coast Guard bands.
Navy Rear Admiral Jack Scorby says the military is looking forward to the events.
“We are extremely excited to showcase our ships, our sailors, or Marines, to this great city. And I know that the sailors are very excited to make this port-of-call.”
Navy Week begins April 16, with the arrival of the USS Gettysburg guided-missile cruiser to the Erato Street Wharf. It ends April 23, when bells ring at St. Louis Cathedral and other riverfront churches to mark the ships’ departures.