NEW YORK, May 21 (UPI) -- Fleet Week has returned to New York City after a year absence and, despite being scaled down, has New Yorkers excited.
The annual tradition was called off last year due to the sequester cuts. The return is much anticipated as it brings a week of scheduled shows and festivities provided by the men and women in uniform. Three Navy ships and two Coast Guard cutters arrived in New York Harbor Wednesday morning to kick off the events. The USS Cole led the procession, the ship bearing a special significance after it was attacked by suicide bombers in Yemen in 2000.
"Really excited to be back this year and engaging with the New Yorkers and with the city," U.S. Navy Lieutenant John Supple said.
About 1,500 service members are participating in Fleet Week's ship tours, parades and aerial demonstrations. The full schedule of events can be found here.
Many New Yorkers are happy to see the return of the tradition. Rachel Maddow of MSNBC tweeted her excitement at seeing the arrivals.
Welcome USS Oak Hill! Just saw you steaming up the Hudson like a champ. Damn the sequester -- it's great to have Fleet Week back.— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) May 21, 2014
Of course, Fleet Week also gets many excited for the Navy members in uniform to be flooding the city.
fleet week means all these beautiful sailors, marines and coast guardsmen <3— Nic. (@__Polanco) May 21, 2014
Fleet Week has officially begun in NYC. If anyone needs me, I'll be on the Hudson River looking for seamen. #FleetWeekNYC— Luchana Gatica (@luchanagatica) May 21, 2014
Gob bless Fleet Week #FleetWeekNYC— Hope Boeringa (@chboeringa) May 21, 2014
Fleet will run through May 27.