One of the highlights of Rose Festival week is when the Fleet comes in.  For a couple years during pandemic, Fleet Week was cancelled, for obvious and understandable reasons.  But now that it’s back, we are reminded of how…  cool it is.

This year featured a higher-than-usual number of ships, which is already cool, but also different ships than we’ve seen before.  Most notable was the USS Monsoor, which is a Zumwalt-class destroyer…  the biggest destroyer in the world.  There aren’t many of these…  only 3 in fact…  and when it was docked alongside the waterfront, it looked impressive.  All these boats look cool in downtown, but this one made a special imprint on the view from across the river.

A couple years ago, I knew the fleet was coming in, and I wanted to see from water level, so I took my boat out on the Willamette and watched.  I didn’t realize how much stress this was gonna cause!  I had a sheriff patrol boat come zooming up to me and make some demands!  They said, “just keep PLENTY of distance between you and the fleet, and make sure to NEVER point your bow at the boat.”  Like, it was kinda scary!  I don’t know what damage they imagined my little pontoon boat was going to be able to do to a Navy Frigate, but they weren’t taking any chances.

At any rate…  Fleet Week is awesome.  I hope it keeps happening forever, and I hope the sailors on board these boats were met with warm welcomes in our fair city.

~Jake from 98.7 The Bull

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