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Bad news seafood lovers...

Sailors get that sinking feeling after Fleet Week falls victim to budget cuts

Navy personnel left 'disappointed' after events across US cancelled in wake of Defense Department's $450bn budget cuts

Matt Williams; guardian.co.uk, Friday 12 April 2013 17.49 BSTt

Fleet Week has been sunk – and the sequester is to blame. Federal budget cuts have forced the cancellation of shore-leave events around the US that traditionally feature throngs of uniformed sailors taking over restaurants and bars.

Events in New York, San Francisco, San Diego and Fort Lauderdale have fallen victim to the cuts, a result of Congress's inability to reach a fiscal deal by the end of 2012. The Department of Defense's budget was cut by $450bn, and in order to find the savings, the Pentagon has cancelled many of its outreach programs.

Fleet Week is a tradition that dates back to 1935, when the first event was held in San Diego. New York has hosted the largest event in recent years: last year six US Navy, three Coast Guard vessels and 12 coalition boats were stationed around Manhattan and Staten Island.

Beth Baker, public affairs director for the navy's mid-Atlantic region, said service personnel would be disappointed. "They love the event; it's the highlight of the year for many people. It's fair to say that they are disappointed."

As well as being a useful recruitment drive tool for the navy, Fleet Week serves as a chance for the American public to see at first-hand how the military budget is spent. But the events come at a cost: last year's event in New York cost the Pentagon between $7m to $10m.

Baker said that all outreach events that incurred extra costs were being withdrawn. She said: "No branch of the armed forces may participate in community relations or outreach events that come at additional cost to the government or rely on anything other than local assets and personnel. We will follow that direction to include participation in Fleet Weeks."

Other events cancelled as a result of the Pentagon guidance include air shows by the display team the Blue Angels.

The navy is still working with the New York Mayor's office and other private organisations to salvage some events planned for this year's Memorial Day weekend.

But it would appear that the annual influx of uniformed sailors into the city will not take place.

Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance – a body that represents the city's vibrant bar and nightlife community – said: "Fleet Week is an opportunity for NYC bars to serve some of America's bravest and also an opportunity for NYC's lively bar scene.

"Many women love a man in uniform and it encourages them to come out and celebrate – it is great for business.

He added: "Hopefully our friends in Washington can ensure that next year NYC has as vibrant a Fleet Week as we have had in recent years."

by Anonymousreply 2604/25/2013

Damn!!!

by Anonymousreply 104/12/2013

WGAS

by Anonymousreply 204/12/2013

Hahaha. Poor babies.

I feel sorry for your lovers of Navy boys, but not the sailors themselves. I'm in the Air Force and it's been surreal to know that there won't be any air shows this year.

by Anonymousreply 304/12/2013

I'm sorry to hear this

by Anonymousreply 404/12/2013

[quote]the events come at a cost: last year's event in New York cost the Pentagon between $7m to $10m.

Bullshit, let's see the numbers. The ships cost $XXXX per day whether they're sitting at a Navy base, sailing the Atlantic or tied up in NYC, ditto the salaries of the sailors. Where's the millions in added expense? A few banners, some velvet rope to use for the tours, and maybe a Navy band or two--we're nowhere near 7-10 million.

This just opera.

by Anonymousreply 504/12/2013

The gay community should step up and fill the gap left with these poor sailors. Lets all adopt-a-sailor and show him a good time in the City.

by Anonymousreply 604/12/2013

This is a shame. I've been to Fleet Weeks in San Diego, Monterey, San Francisco, and New York, an international naval review in Sydney, and Tall Ships in Boston. Every one of them were great fun. I turned down an invitation to fly on a Blue Angels 2-seater demo plane. My boss did it. He got off the plane looking green, glassy-eyed and carrying a full barf bag.

by Anonymousreply 704/12/2013

When I lived in Manhattan, Fleet Week was a Gay National Holiday! I once drove down from a gig I had in Vermont just to enjoy the splendors of Fleet Week!

And no need for you to comment, I'll exclaim it myself: Mary!

by Anonymousreply 804/12/2013

I nor my neighbors nor any cats and dogs in San Francisco will miss the Blue Angels this year at a savings of $28 MILLION. They're impressive. We get it.

But year after year the bombastic noise and close proximity to my roof is threatening. And when the six of them fly inches apart upside down at supersonic speed over the Financial District, one tiny error could cause a massive catastrophe.

Yes, I will miss the throngs of sailors in uniform who end up in bars in The Castro. But they're not worth another $10 million.

by Anonymousreply 904/12/2013

Fleet Week in New York turns Manhattan into a friendly town. For 51 weeks of the year, people don't make eye contact and don't talk to strangers.

During Fleet Week, New Yorkers seem to burst out with friendliness toward the sailors and Marines. It's the one time that they feel safe about talking to total strangers.

When standing in line in a store, wearing your uniform, other people in line talk to you and greet you. They ask where you're from and how you're enjoying the city. They even begin to talk to other civilian strangers in line. Shop clerks that are normally business-like, smile and chat with you. Taxi drivers pull over and ask which ship you're from. Bus drivers give you a free ride. Anywhere that you see two or three sailors walking, the people in that area will be smiling; smiling at the sailors and also smiling at other people. It's contagious. Most New Yorkers want to be friendly, and Fleet Week is their opportuniny to do it.

Several sailors were at a street corner, waiting for the light to change. A limo was right there. The window went down and an elderly lady in the back told them to hop in and they could go for a ride. They got in and she welcomed them to the city and said her driver would take them any place they wanted to go and would guide them. He dropped her off at the place she was going and she gave them all some spending money and waved them off for a night on the town on her dime.

by Anonymousreply 1004/12/2013

Bumping for Fleet Week stories

by Anonymousreply 1104/13/2013

This is when people get to suck a lot of sailor cock, right?

Where do I go for that? or was it canceled outright? I'm high so I forgot what the actual article said.

by Anonymousreply 1204/13/2013

Bump

by Anonymousreply 1304/24/2013

This all public relations bullshit.

Cancel high profile events instead of useless weapons and everyone will feel sorry for our cash-crazy military.

by Anonymousreply 1404/24/2013

This is what we get for voting for Obama. Dumbass fucktarts.

by Anonymousreply 1504/24/2013

r15, if you're going to troll, you need to include other elements in the post to indicate that you actually mean it - that you really ARE that stupid.

by Anonymousreply 1604/24/2013

[R16] = RACI$ST LE$BIAN VEGAN CATHOLIC TROLL ALERT!

by Anonymousreply 1704/24/2013

OP is a fucking retard.

Why the fuck would you say "seafood lovers" in the title, you goddamn dipshit?

Seafood = fish = pussy, fuckface!

by Anonymousreply 1804/24/2013

Navy = seafood

by Anonymousreply 1904/24/2013

"Fleet Week has been sunk – and the sequester is to blame."

They're not the only Fleet that will be disappointed that the sailors' absence.

by Anonymousreply 2104/24/2013

It's obvious that the moron at r20 has never been to San Diego, Long Beach, San Francisco, Charleston, Jacksonville, Groton, Kings Bay, Millington, New London, Norfolk or any other Navy town. Any gay man living in any Navy location, is aware that the sailors (not "the Navy" r20 idjit, sailors) are referred to as seafood.

No doubt, your liquor-fueled addled brain can't comprehend any connection between a sailor and the sea. It would take a modicum of intelligence to figure that out.

by Anonymousreply 2204/24/2013

W&W for r21!!

by Anonymousreply 2304/24/2013

I assume this is all going to cost the affected cities a substantial amount of revenue. Great. $7-8 mil. is not that much to stage the events. I assumed that the largest part of the budget is for the increased security necessary around the vessels.

by Anonymousreply 2404/24/2013

WON'T SOMEONE PLEASE THINK ABOUT THE WHORES??!!!

by Anonymousreply 2504/24/2013

I love the Navy guys.

by Anonymousreply 2604/25/2013
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