Port City to Welcome U.S. Navy during Wilmington Navy Week

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The Port City, Wilmington, North Carolina, is scheduled to host members of the U.S. Navy during Wilmington Navy Week, April 1-7, coinciding with the North Carolina Azalea Festival.
Navy Weeks, coordinated by the Navy Office of Community Outreach, are designed to give Americans an opportunity to learn about the Navy, its people and its importance to national security and prosperity. Since 2005, the Navy Week program has served as the Navy’s flagship outreach effort into areas of the country without a significant Navy presence, providing the public a firsthand look at the Navy the nation needs.
Steffanie Easter, Director, Navy Staff, Office of Chief of Naval Operations, will share the Navy’s message with local civic organizations, businesses and community groups as the senior Navy executive during the week.
Additionally, Easter will crown the Queen of the North Carolina Azalea Festival on Wednesday, April 3, 3-4:30 p.m. This is a long-standing tradition for attendees of the festival. Navy Sailors will also march in the 72nd North Carolina Azalea Festival Parade on Saturday, April 6, beginning at 9:30 a.m.
Navy Weeks play a vital role in connecting the American public with a large array of Sailors, assets and equipment. The weeklong event strives to engage with local communities who do not have frequent visibility of the Navy.
“We are really excited to be coming to Wilmington,” said Lt. Davis Anderson, lead planner for Wilmington Navy Week. “All throughout the planning process, Wilmington residents have been very helpful and welcoming, and together we have worked to create a great schedule that will give locals a chance to interact with their Navy.”
Sailors participating come from a wide range of commands, demonstrating the Navy’s versatility and vitality in protecting and defending America around the world, around the clock.
Among those participating will be the Sailors from the oldest American warship, USS Constitution, Navy Band Northeast, the Virginia-class attack submarine USS North Carolina, Coastal Riverine Squadron Two and Naval Operations Support Command Wilmington, U.S. Fleet Forces Environmental and Navy Recruiting District Raleigh.
“The crew of the USS Constitution will be giving historic presentations dressed in our 1813 uniforms,” said Chief Yeoman Patrick Parker. “We discuss the history of the Navy and how it ties into USS Constitution. We know that it’s not easy for the entire U.S. population and people of Wilmington to make it up to Boston so it’s important that we travel to cities without a naval presence and share our story.”
The week’s events will include school presentations, public band performances, parade participation, community service projects, and expeditionary demonstrations.
“Attendees of Wilmington Navy Week will experience a wide spectrum of musical excellence displayed by the sailors of Navy Band Northeast,” said Musician 3rd Class April Griffin. “During the week, listeners will be amazed by our dynamic popular music group, ‘Rhode Island Sound,’ and our Brass Quintet will inspire with their superb performances of a wide range of musical styles. Later in the week, listeners will enjoy the impressive musicality and precision of our 18-piece ceremonial band. The pièce de résistance will be the pageantry of our full marching band on parade in honor of all the past and present sailors of the U.S. Navy.”
Wilmington is the fourth of 14 Navy Weeks scheduled in 2019. To see a full schedule of events open to the public, please visit https://outreach.navy.mil/Navy-Weeks/Wilmington/

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