EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT LA FLEET WEEK: SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA’S WEEK-LONG SALUTE TO MILITARY

Active-Duty Military Ships Arrive May 21 at the Port of Los Angeles; Free Ship Tours Over Memorial Day Weekend May 24-27

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – May 17, 2024 – In what has become a Memorial Day tradition in Southern California, LA Fleet Week® returns to the Port of Los Angeles with a multi-day schedule packed with educational and entertaining activities. The celebration honoring the men and women — past and present — of the United States Armed Forces, LA Fleet Week is free and open to the public.

Taking place on the LA Waterfront at the Port of Los Angeles, LA Fleet Week will again offer one of its most popular activities: free public tours of visiting active-duty military ships. This year, a Navy aircraft carrier will be showcased, the first to visit Los Angeles since the USS Abraham Lincolnparticipated in Navy Days in 2011. Navy Days was replaced by the larger annual LA Fleet Week event in 2016.

During LA Fleet Week, thousands of active-duty service members will enjoy a week of activities and events across the Southland. In celebration, two welcome parties are planned in their honor. The Downtown San Pedro Welcome Party will be held on Thursday, May 23 from 5-9 p.m. in historic downtown San Pedro. The Wilmington Welcome Party, a homestyle family picnic will take place at the Banning House Museum in Wilmington on Friday, May 24, from 5:30-9 p.m. Free and open to the public, both welcome parties will feature al fresco food and live entertainment.

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SHIP TOURS

Ship tours will be available Friday through Monday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with the last ship tour shuttles departing at 3 p.m. On Monday, the last aircraft carrier ship tour shuttles will depart at noon, while US Coast Guard Cutter tours will continue until 4 p.m . All ship tours are on a first-come, first-served basis with shuttle bus lines forming at the LA Fleet Week EXPO, adjacent to the Battleship IOWA. Naval ships will be berthed in the Port of LA’s outer harbor, with shuttles running visitors to and from the EXPO.

All adults must present a valid government-issued ID (state ID card, driver’s license or passport) to tour a Navy ship. Non-U.S. citizens must show valid passports and will be subject to a brief additional screening before boarding the vessels. Photocopies of IDs will not be accepted. Large bags, beverages of any kind, support animals, long-lens cameras (over 100mm), strollers or wheelchairs, and open-toed shoes are not permitted on ship tours. For a complete list of prohibited items on ship tours, check here.

Separately, an active-duty U.S. Coast Guard Cutter will be docked in Downtown Harbor and available for tours. Steps away, visitors can take a break from the sun and visit the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, which is free and open to the public, and learn about the nautical history of the L.A. Harbor Area.

Visitors interested in ship tours are encouraged to arrive early, look for parking in the downtown San Pedro area and walk to the EXPO. Outer Harbor parking is also available, with shuttles taking visitors from parking lots to the Expo. Parking map and shuttle information can be found here.

LA FLEET WEEK EXPO

Most LA Fleet Week activities will take place at the LA Fleet Week EXPO in front of the Battleship USS IOWA Museum. The Expo will feature military and non-military equipment and displays, aircraft flyovers and weekend-long live entertainment.

Various competitions between branches of the military will be featured throughout the weekend – including a dodgeball tournament, a “Military Has Talent” show, and the Galley Wars “Mission Impossible” culinary competition, with the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force entering a combined team in this steel beach BBQ-inspired grill challenge for the first time. Check here for the Expo map.

FLEET WEEK AFTER PARTY

New to LA Fleet Week this year, the LA Fleet Week After Party at West Harbor will be held from 5-10 p.m. Enjoy brews and waterside views Saturday and Sunday along the West Harbor Promenade. Hosted by West Harbor and limited to those aged 21 or older, the after-party will include two festive evenings with a live DJ, beer garden, cocktails, and food vendors. Visitors can see firsthand progress on the nearby West Harbor development, slated to open in 2025. Check here for map of Downtown Harbor area.

FESTIVAL OF SAIL AT LA FLEET WEEK

The Festival of Sail at LA Fleet Week presented by the Los Angeles Maritime Institute, will be underway Friday through Monday on the long dock, adjacent to the West Harbor Promenade. The majestic Tallship Village will be welcoming visitors aboard for free deck tours and other activities, with four waterfront sails daily.

HARBOR BOAT TOURS

Adjacent to the Festival of Sail and also on the long dock, Harbor Breeze Cruises will be offering harbor tours and whale-watching excursions throughout Memorial Day Weekend.

NEIGHBORHOOD ACTIVATIONS

Beyond the LA Waterfront, LA Fleet Week is coordinating various neighborhood activations around the region, providing Southern Californians an opportunity to meet and engage with service personnel. As LA Fleet Week comes to a close on Memorial Day, 500 Navy Sailors will walk across the iconic Sixth Street Bridge in Downtown Los Angeles for a Memorial Day Sailor Salute. The public is invited to participate.

Get the most up-to-date schedule of events and activities during LA Fleet Week here.

DOWNTOWN SAN PEDRO

Just steps from the Expo, LA Fleet Week visitors can enjoy a wide variety of local restaurants, shops, breweries and more in historic downtown San Pedro. A selection of local businesses will be offering military discounts to the women and men of our military branches.

About LA Fleet Week

Established in 2016, LA Fleet Week is an annual, multi-day celebration of our nation’s Sea Services held on the LA Waterfront at the Port of Los Angeles over the extended Memorial Day Weekend.

Hosted by the Port of Los Angeles and Battleship IOWA Museum, LA Fleet Week was created through a unique public-private partnership to connect Southern Californians with the men and women of the United States Sea Services. These connections are facilitated through numerous outreach and engagement opportunities across the region and at a centralized event location on the LA Waterfront at America’s largest port.

For more information on LA Fleet Week and updates, visit lafleetweek.com.

 

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