A planned U.S. Navy outreach event in Oklahoma City has been canceled due to federal budget cuts, Navy officials announced Thursday.
Oklahoma City was one of 18 cities included in the 2013 Navy Week season. Navy Week is a series of events that brings an array of sailors and naval equipment to cities without a major Navy presence.
Navy officials canceled the 2013 Navy Week season in response to automatic federal spending cuts known as budget sequestration.
“We are all suffering under the same budget constraints,” said Lt. Cmdr. Pamela Bou, Navy Week program manager.
A typical Navy Week includes 75 to 100 small events across the city, Bou said. Those events generally include visits to civic groups, veterans hospitals and Boys and Girls Clubs, Bou said.
Events also can include larger public displays, such as demonstrations by the Blue Angels, the Navy's flight demonstration squadron. Navy officials said earlier this month that the Blue Angels would be temporarily grounded due to budget cuts.
Other Navy Week events might feature Navy divers or performances by Navy bands, Bou said. Oklahoma City's Navy Week would have included an event at the Oklahoma State Fair featuring the Leap Frogs, the Navy's parachute team, she said.
“Every city is different,” Bou said.
Navy Week events are designed to bring the Navy to areas of the country that don't typically see sailors, Bou said. Most of the Navy's presence is concentrated along the coasts, she said, so inland areas such as Oklahoma have relatively little exposure to it.