Fort Lauderdale Fleet Week is here, which means Navy ships and all-around maritime awesomeness.
Of all the ships coming into Port Everglades, the biggest star will undoubtedly be the USS New York, which was constructed from steel recovered from the wreckage of the Twin Towers.
Coming in at 684 feet in length, the New York is one the Navy's newest ships. It's classified as an amphibious ship, which means it can deliver Marines and weaponry on enemy beaches.
The New York's bow stem is made from 7.5 tons of steel taken from the World Trace Center. The ship's motto is "Never Forget."
Unfortunately, if you haven't registered to take a tour of the ship, it's too late. All tours for the New York have been filled.
But you'll still be able to see it in all its majesty when it rolls into Port Everglades on Monday.
The New York will be joined by the Miami-based Coast Guard cutter Bernard C. Webber and the Dependable, another Coast Guard cutter from Cape May, New Jersey.
That's pretty much all the ships you'll be able to gawk at during the week, as Fleet Week as we once knew it was gutted since last year's budget cuts.
The sequestration -- the automatic government budget cuts -- that went into effect in March 2013, hurt Fleet Week, narrowing it to just one carrier and a couple of cutters -- a far cry from years past, when the week featured eight or more carriers as well as destroyers, missile cruisers, amphibious landing crafts, submarines, and various aerobatic planes.
Fleet Week organizers were hopeful that last year would be the one and only year they'd have to scale back their event. But budget constraints seem to be just as heavy-handed this time around.
Still, hundreds of sailors are expected to hit up Broward and Fort Lauderdale this week, which is pretty cool.
On Monday, the Seminole Hard Rock & Casino will host about 500 men and women of the U.S. Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard at "All Hands on Deck," which is the official welcoming ceremony for Fleet Week.
The ceremony gets kicked off at 6 p.m. Monday and is organized by Broward Navy Days Inc., a nonprofit organization.
"These great young Americans felt a call to serve their country and are routinely sent to represent our nation and defend our strategic interests at great personal risk," Mary Anne Gray, chair of Broward Navy Days Inc., said in a statement. "Fleet Week provides an opportunity for the citizens of South Florida to meet and thank these heroes while witnessing first-hand the latest capabilities of today's modern Navy and maritime services."
All events for Fleet Week are free to the public. For more information on events and scheduling, bang it here.
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