Portland is celebrating it’s 109th Rose Festival this year. Since the very first Rose Festival in 1907, visiting ships and other fleet-related elements (like submarines) have been coming to Portland’s waterfront — so this is also Fleet Week. One of the purposes of Fleet Week is to celebrate and thank the active and reserve military personnel and all veterans.
The Portland Rose Festival is one of a few U.S. Ports of Call for a courtesy visit from the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, and Royal Canadian Navy. Their arrival commemorates a relationship with the Navy that has lasted more than 100 years. It is a significant commitment by the Navy to make the Rose Festival Fleet Week one of the premier Fleet Week events in the country.
We knew that ships would be departing Astoria, OR, arriving in the late afternoon on June 8th and 9th in Portland. Here are photos that we captured of some of the arrivals. The first arrival is from the Royal Canadian Navy. Click on image for a larger view.
The first US Coast Guard ship.
A close-up of the passengers and crew.
A working US Coast Guard ship.
US Coast Guard Buoy Tender.
US Navy PT 658 — World War II PT-625-class Higgins 78-foot PT boat, 1945. This boat is fully restored and permanently attached to Portland.
Not part of the fleet, but normal work on the river does go on. This is one of our favorite tugs positioning a barge up river.
US Navy ship with towed array sonar. A towed array sonar is a system of hydrophones towed behind a submarine or a surface ship on a cable. Trailing the hydrophones behind the vessel, on a cable that can be kilometers long, which keeps the array’s sensors away from its own-ship’s noise sources, greatly improving its signal-to-noise ratio, and hence the effectiveness of detecting and tracking faint contacts, such as quiet, low noise-emitting submarine threats, or seismic signals.
Close up of the towed array sonar.
One of two US Navy destroyers being escorted by tugs to ensure proper positioning in the Willamette River.
US Navy PT 658 joining the escort.
A Portland Fire Department boat joining the escort.
A local peace activist.
Walking along the Willamette River toward the Steel Bridge, both US Navy destroyers are visible.
This photo is taken from mid-span of the Steel Bridge before free tours of the ship begin.
I won’t be viewing the Rose Parade, however, I did go by Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland to see it all dressed up for the weeks’ festivities.
The Rose Parade with all it’s rituals will be completed on Saturday, June 11; the visiting ships will leave Monday morning.