PORTLAND, Ore. — Fleet week, a Rose Festival tradition, will be virtual for the second year in a row due to the pandemic. Fleet week starts Wednesday and goes until Sunday, with most events happening online.
Fleet week has been happening for decades, going back to 1907. In a normal year, there would be visiting ships from the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard and Royal Canadian Army in town and on display along the Portland Waterfront, with tours available for the public.
This year, once again the tours will be virtual. People can also hear stories about members of the sea services shared through video. Rose Festival CEO Jeff Curtis says it's meant to showcase the men and women who put their lives on the line to protect citizens.
Other highlights of this year's Fleet Week include a virtual tour of the USS Portland, a state-of-the-art vessel, as well as a presentation on World Environmental Day and the efforts the sea services play in keeping the environment healthy.
No tickets are required, and these events are all free.
The Portland Rose Festival is a tradition that dates back 114 years and goes on from May to June with parades, fairs and more-- It's the largest series of mass-gathering events in Oregon. The festival itself is also mostly virtual this year. In February, organizers announced its largest summer events would be postponed until 2022.