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Navy Week Setting Sail For Wichita

The USS Wichita entered service last year.

The United States Navy is coming to Wichita for Navy Week.

Navy Week started in 2005 after officials learned that many Americans didn’t know much about the service. Navy Week allows communities to learn about the Navy, its role and its people. The week-long event works to engage cities that do not have frequent contact with the Navy.

A crew representing the USS Wichita will participate in events throughout the week of Sept. 9-15. The USS Wichita, commissioned in 2018, reflects the history of Wichita's Keeper of the Plains with its motto, “Keeper of the Seas.”

Cmdr. Chavius Lewis, the ship’s commanding officer, said his crew wants to showcase the Navy and let the community know how proud they are to be USS Wichita sailors.

Lt. John Stevens is the navy week program manager.

“We try to plug into as many public events as we can over the course of the week so that sailors do get a chance to tell their stories,” Stevens said.

“One of the most exciting things about Navy Week is to kind of educate people on what it is that sailors do."

The senior executive host for Navy Week is Rear Adm. Nancy Lacore, vice commander of U.S. Sixth Fleet. She will meet with key officials in Wichita, including Mayor Jeff Longwell.
Navy representatives will be present at the following Navy Week events:

  • Sept. 9-12 Kansas State Fair in Hutchinson
  • Sept. 10 Cultural event at the Mid-America All-Indian Center
  • Sept. 11 Team Red, White and Blue 9/11 Flag Run
  • Sept. 14 Kansas Aviation Museum
  • Sept. 15 Exploration Place for Fiesta Hispania

Suzette Sponsel is an intern in the KMUW News Lab.