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October 21, 2013 at 5:56 PM
The U.S. Navy announced Monday it plans to fund the return of the Blue Angels and Fleet Week to Seattle’s Seafair next year.
Seafair officials have been planning since December for the flight team to come back in 2014, said spokeswoman Melissa Jurcan. But it wasn’t until today that the Navy said it plans on funding a full 2014 Blue Angels tour next year and five Fleet Weeks despite funding cuts.
But because of the potential for continuing budget squabbles in Congress, Jurcan said Seafair organizers were “cautiously optimistic” that both the Blue Angels and Fleet Week would be back. Fleet Week usually brings several Navy ships into Seattle to dock during the annual summer celebration.
“Everything seems so tentative with Congress, we’re going to hold off on any big announcements until about January,” said Jurcan.
The Blue Angels show was canceled this last summer after sequestration forced funding cuts. The Department of Defense cuts resulted in the withdrawal of more than 2,800 outreach events this year, according to a Navy release.
Most Department of Defense public outreach programs will still be operating at reduced capacity next year, though, according to a department release. The cost-cutting measures that could affect the frequency of other shows put on by jets, parachute teams, bands and port visits will save the department $104 million.
August 5, 2013 at 1:28 PM
Thirty-four people were cited for boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol (BUI) during the Seafair events on Lake Washington this weekend, police said.
That’s a drop of more than 40 percent from last year’s Seafair BUI total, 61.
Seafair officials said attendance was down from last year. Since it’s an open festival, exact numbers weren’t available, but ticket sales at the log boom were down 20 percent, said Melissa Jurkin, Seafair’s director of marketing and communications.
“That doesn’t mean everybody that bought tickets showed up, though,” she said.
Police contacted 473 boats, down 32 percent from last year’s event, and doled out 42 citations for speeding or unsafe lane changes, among other infractions. Medical assistance was called for four boaters.
Of those contacted, 15 refused breath tests, which under new legislation is an infraction carrying a fine of $2,050.
Of the 34 charged with BUIs, four were booked and taken to jail; the others were pulled over and told to have someone come pick them up.
Four search warrants were served for blood samples and one for search of a vessel resulted in a drug arrest. Police also seized two handguns from boaters over the weekend, one of which was found to have been stolen.
August 3, 2013 at 10:07 AM
The weekend got off to a slightly soggy start, but forecasts call for decreasing clouds over the next couple days, with temperatures in the 70s and 80s. The National Weather Service forecast has more.
That time of year again: Fans of airshows and hydroplane races, rejoice! It’s Seafair Weekend, which means nostalgic vehicles will be taking over Lake Washington. No Blue Angels this year, but the Patriots Jet Team showed its colors during rehearsal over the lake yesterday. And remember: The Interstate 90 bridge will be closed for a while this afternoon and tomorrow. Read more about the Patriots and take a look at our Seafair schedule and highlights.
Battered building: A man was arrested this morning after allegedly ramming his truck into a medical center several times. Sheriff’s spokesman Jason Stanley said the man, who is known to deputies in the Burien area as having mental health issues, was taken into custody without injury.
Clint Dempsey joining the Sounders:
UPDATE, 10:14 AM | The Sounders have officially reached an agreement to acquire Clint Dempsey. Tottenham Hotspur announced the deal on Twitter on Saturday morning.
ORIGINAL POST | Just one day after Sounders FC announced it had freed up a designated-player slot, the team is finalizing the transfer of American star Clint Dempsey, according to a report from ESPNFC.com. Sounders general manager Adrian Hanauer and a team spokesman each declined to comment. Dempsey could join the team as early as tonight, though reports say he wouldn’t be playing, since he isn’t on the active roster yet.
Most-read stories on seattletimes.com:
Nick Provenza: 206-464-2142 or email@example.com
August 2, 2013 at 10:13 AM
If you’re heading out for Seafair air show or hydroplane events today, here’s a list of what’s happening and when:
Friday August 2, 2013
|10:40 a.m. Boeing Air Show: Red Eagle Air Sports presented by PPG Aerospace|
|10:50 a.m. Boeing Air Show: Flying Heritage Collection|
|11:15 a.m. H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Testing Session|
|12:00 p.m. Formula One PROP Tour Autograph Session|
|12:15 p.m. Hydroplane & Raceboat Museum Vintage Exhibition|
|12:30 p.m. Boeing Air Show: Lucas Oil Air Show|
|12:30 p.m. H1 Unlimited Autograph Session|
|12:45 p.m. Boeing Air Show: Warbird|
|12:50 p.m. Boeing Air Show: Red Eagle Air Sports presented by PPG Aerospace|
|1:05 p.m. Boeing Air Show: Air National Guard Aerobatic Team|
|1:30 p.m Boeing Air Show: Clay Lacy Lear 24|
|1:45 p.m. Boeing Air Show: Patriots Jet Team|
|2:35 p.m. Hydroplane & Raceboat Museum Vintage Exhibition|
|2:45 p.m. H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Qualifying Session|
|5:00 p.m. Formula One PROP Tour Qualifying Session|
|6:00 p.m. Gates Close|
August 1, 2013 at 10:51 AM
We won’t have the Blue Angels at Seafair, but yes, we’ll still have Interstate 90 closed for an aerial display.
The I-90 bridge across Lake Washington will close from 1:15 p.m. to 2:40 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday to accommodate the practice and performances of the California-based Patriots Jet Team, according to WSDOT.
The six-jet civilian aerial acrobatics team is headlining the Boeing Air Show due to the sequester-caused grounding of the Navy’s Blue Angels, the show’s usual marquee attraction.
WSDOT says its message signs will display a countdown to the closure each day. Motorists, pedestrians and cyclists will all be barred from the bridge during the airshows, WSDOT said.
WSDOT said the Highway 520 bridge will remain open to traffic, with tolls, and drivers should expect delays on 520 during the I-90 closure.
Click here for WSDOT’s ramp-by-ramp look at the closures.
July 29, 2013 at 10:22 AM
Law enforcement agencies will take to the water this weekend looking for impaired boaters during the annual Seafair activities on Lake Washington.
The Washington State Patrol, along with city, county and federal agencies, will participate in the Impaired Boating Emphasis from Friday through Sunday during the hydroplane races and airshow. During last year’s emphasis patrols, officers made a total of 61 arrests for boating under the influence (BUI); and 70 arrests in 2011.
According to the State Patrol, boating under the influence is similar to DUI: the legal limit is .08 or under the influence and/or affected by drugs. In addition, new BUI laws that went into effect on Sunday include:
– BUI changed from a misdemeanor to a gross misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $5,000 and up to 364 days in jail;
– Law enforcement is now able to require operators suspected of BUI to take a breath or blood test;
– Law enforcement now has the authority to issue citations to vessel operators during the investigation of collisions/accidents they did not witness, thus holding negligent and reckless boaters more accountable.
July 27, 2013 at 6:01 PM
Seth and Kim Rosen wanted to make sure they got a good spot to view the Seafair Torchlight Parade, so they headed to downtown Fourth Avenue early.
The parade starts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. They got there at noon.
“We got the very last curbside spot,” Kim Rosen said as she and her family sat at their makeshift camp near Fourth Avenue and Cedar Street.
The Torchlight Parade is expected to draw 300,000 viewers to watch the on Fourth Avenue between Seattle Center and Pioneer Square.
With a couple of hours to go before the parade started, viewing areas were at a premium. Groups walked up and down Fourth Avenue trying to find a space to set down lawn chairs and blankets. Near Fourth Avenue and Battery Street, someone had chained together five chairs around a tree.
The parade is a Seattle tradition that’s gone on for 64 years. The Rosens have come at least a half-dozen times in the past 30 years, they said, first with their daughter, Jessica Markham, and now their 3-year-old granddaughter Ashlyn. The Duvall couple wanted to make sure their granddaughter had a good spot to watch the parade.
Before the procession started, the couple passed the time watching “the parade outside the parade.”
“The people-watching is not too bad,” Seth Rosen said.
Viewers had other things to watch before the parade, too. At 6:30, racers in the Torchlight Run, some in pirate costumes, would be running along the same route.
May 10, 2013 at 10:15 AM
Former Seattle Sonics superstar guard Gary Payton will serve as Grand Marshal of this year’s Seafair Torchlight Parade, the summer festival announced Friday.
“We’re honored that Gary is serving in the Grand Marshal role and welcome him to the Seafair family,” Seafair President Beth Knox said in a news release. “His international status as a sports legend combined with his commitment to the Seattle community makes him an ideal selection for the grand marshal role. I know fans will come out on Torchlight Night to recognize Gary for his incredible accomplishments.”
Payton, an Oregon State University graduate, was the second overall pick in the 1990 NBA Draft and played 13 years for the Sonics. When he was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks in 2003, he was Seattle’s all-time leader in games played, points, minutes, steals, assists, field goals made and three-point field goals made. He won an NBA Championship with the Heat in 2006, and Gold Medals with the U.S. Olympic Team in 1996 and 2000.
He will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Sept. 8.
The parade, technically called the 2013 Alaska Airlines Seafair Torchlight Parade, will take place at 7:30 p.m. on July 27, starting near the Seattle Center and continuing down Fourth Avenue.
It will include “live bands, high-energy drill and dance teams, floats, marching bands, the scurvy Seafair Pirates, Seafair Clowns, gigantic character balloons, local celebrities, and more,” according to the news release. About 150,000 spectators are expected.
April 9, 2013 at 7:50 AM
Seafair officials confirmed today that the Navy’s Blue Angels will not be appearing in Seattle this year.
The word comes several weeks after the Navy said appearances in Seattle and elsewhere around the country could fall victim to the federal “sequestration” budget cuts.
Last week, it was widely reported that the Pensacola-based Blue Angels team had been “instructed to cease” practices, and that shows early in this year’s schedule had been canceled.
Late last month, when the absence of the Blue Angels appeared likely, Seafair officials said that even without the popular Navy team, fans would see a precision-flying team at this summer’s Seafair.
The Patriots Jet Team, a civilian-owned precision aerobatics team based in California, has been signed to appear at the Seattle festival the first weekend in August. The Patriots performed at Seafair in 2007 and 2008, and have appeared at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord Air Expo.
See the Patriots Jet Team in action here.
Seafair posted this announcement to fans on its web site:
Today we were officially informed by the U.S. Navy Blue Angels that their season has been cancelled, including the Seafair performance, due to Federal Budget Cuts resulting from sequestration. The Blue Angels have flown at Seafair for over 40 years and are an important part of our history. The team will be deeply missed by Seattleites, however Seafair will continue in its traditional fashion. The Patriots Jet Team, which we previously announced, will now assume the lead spot in our world-class air show. The six-ship aerobatic team electrifies spectators with fast-paced formation flying, choreographed four-ship diamond formation aerobatic maneuvers and are highlighted by a computerized red, white and blue smoke system. Many of the pilots include past experience with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, U.S.A.F. Thunderbirds and Royal Canadian Air Force.
In addition to the air show, Seafair Weekend will include H1 Unlimited hydroplane racing, F1 PROP Tour boat racing, a vintage hydroplane exhibition, a wakeboard competition featuring the top athletes in the sport, live music and activities such as a zip line and water slide. Seafair Weekend, and the Seafair festival overall, has evolved over the years. It is a festival with many facets – an eight week celebration that includes over 75 events and reaches nearly two million people.
We’re grateful for the support of our fans, volunteers, sponsors and beyond. Together, we’ve connected and celebrated as a community for the last 64 summers. We look forward to carrying on this long-standing tradition.
August 5, 2012 at 9:21 AM
Weather: Hot. Hot. Hot. Today’s forecast calls for it to be even hotter than yesterday, with highs possibly reaching high 80s to low 90s. We could even break the record for this day: 89 degrees, which was set in 1977, according to KING5. Things will start to change quickly tomorrow, with winds shifting to bring in cooler coastal air, which may bring showers and possible thunderstorms. The National Weather Service forecast.
Traffic: Currently all clear out there right now, but remember that the I-90 bridge will close this afternoon from 12:45 to 2:40 p.m. for Blue Angels performances. The Highway 520 floating bridge also will close from 11:30 a.m. to about noon for boat traffic. The map and cams.
Seafair: Today is the last day of Seafair and we couldn’t have asked for a better day to cap the festival. As I mentioned above, the Blue Angels perform over Lake Washington from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Also happening, the final hydro heats start this morning at 10:25 a.m., leading up to the Albert Lee H1 Unlimited Final at 4:45 p.m. Complete Sunday Seafair schedule.
I-5 closes after report of man with gun on overpass: After police received a report about a man with either a stick or a rifle on the I-5 overpass, a Ferndale police officer said he may have seen a muzzle flash. Despite a full response, including a K-9 unit and a Homeland Security helicopter, officers could not find a suspect or any evidence a shot was fired, according to the Washington State Patrol.
Tuesday primary: Need a refresher on the primary? Or if you haven’t paying attention until now, Andrew Garber breaks down the key races and gives practical information on voting deadlines, drop box locations and voting centers for the disabled.
Most-read stories this morning on seattletimes.com:
About The Today File
The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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