Navy Featuring Ship Tours for 2017 Fleet Fest

Sailors handle lines as the future USS GERALD R. FORD (CVN 78) arrives at Naval Station Norfolk after returning from Builder’s Sea Trials and seven days underway. (Credit: U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Christopher Lind.)

Members of the public will get a chance to tour the USS Gerald R. Ford and USS Cole during the Naval Station Norfolk’s Fleet Fest tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The USS Gerald R. Ford is the lead ship in her class of Navy aircraft carriers and was commissioned in July.

The USS Cole is an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer and just completed a seven-month deployment to the Middle East, for the second time since the terrorist bombing in October 2000 that claimed the lives of 17 service members.

Fleet Fest will also include a chili cook off, car show, concessions, and live music from the U. S. Fleet Forces band at 6 p.m. and the Neon Trees at 7 p.m. followed by a fireworks show at 8:30 p.m. Naval Station Norfolk’s Gate 2 will open to the general public at 11 a.m.

The festival is just one of many events throughout to celebrate the centennial birthday of the naval station.

Related: Norfolk Dedicates Mural for Naval Station Norfolk Centennial 

Visitors should wear comfortable clothing and shoes, preferably closed-toed, to tour the ships. Strollers or baby carriers are not permitted on the ships and they are not handicap accessible.

Check out the 2017 Fleet Fest webpage for a full schedule of the events.