Your Guide to San Diego Fleet Week 2020

San Diego and the U.S. Armed Forces have always had a very close relationship. Our oceanside location, excellent community, and famously mild year-round weather make for the perfect place from which the Navy, Coast Guard, and Marines can launch operations and conduct exercises. 

San Diego celebrates the men and women of these forces every year with a blowout Fleet Week event. This year’s Fleet Week takes place from November 11-15 on Broadway Pier in Downtown San Diego. 

Here’s just some of what you can expect from the pier’s biggest party. 

A Shared History

San Diego’s Fleet Week began in 1997. Local civic and business leaders in “America’s Finest City” collectively felt the need to convene a celebratory honor for the heroes stationed at San Diego’s naval bases and their contributions to the community. Backed by area leaders and the San Diego Chamber of Commerce, Fleet Week was born. It’s been a prominent and popular event on the local civil events calendar ever since.

Meet the Fleet

The impressive watercraft of the participating forces are always on show in and around the waters of San Diego during the event. Military history aficionados, veterans, and kids always show lots of interest in these impressive machines. Past celebrations have featured aircraft carriers, rescue boats, battleships, and more. Some even offer tours! 

Qualcomm Innovation Zone

Sponsored by San Diego-based tech firm Qualcomm, the Innovation Zone exhibit in the pier’s Port Pavilion building is always a fascinating display of some of the latest technology built for both military and civilian commercial use. STEM students, service members, parents, and service members always find much to enjoy at this educational experience. 

Military Family-Appreciation Day

Fleet Week always sets aside time to honor the sacrifices made by those who keep the home fires burning while enlisted loved ones are off fighting the good fight. Food, prizes, photo opportunities, contests, and other fun events are just some of the ways Fleet Week says thank-you to the valued support networks of our heroes. 

Golf and Softball Tournaments

Enlisted personnel are encouraged to participate in these fun sports events. Softball games are played at the on-base field at Naval Base San Diego. The golf tournament is open to up to 36 teams of four or fewer enlisted men and women, who will compete for the coveted Fleet Week Inter-Service Trophy. Dinner will be provided for all participants, as well as a chance at prizes and giveaways. 

Veterans Art Exhibit

Many veterans are also talented artists and express their lives, experiences, and service through a variety of creative works. During Fleet Week, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego hosts a curated exhibit featuring works by these talented servicepeople. The exhibit is open to the public, and all are encouraged to attend. 

These are just some of the events visitors and participants can look forward to during Fleet Week. Car shows, live music, fireworks, and more are also in the works. Watch this space for updates!

Update 9/25/2020: Enjoy a special Veteran’s Day Fleet Week Boat Parade on November 11th viewable right here from the Best Western PLUS Island Palms! The parade starts at 10:00 AM at San Diego Harbor located Downtown.