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San Francisco Fleet Week Getting Revitalized

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A U.S. Navy Blue Angels F/A-18 Hornet piloted by U.S. Marine Corps Major Nathan Miller flies past the San Francisco skyline during a practice flight ahead of the Fleet Week performance October 8, 2009 in San Francisco. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A U.S. Navy Blue Angels F/A-18 Hornet piloted by U.S. Marine Corps Major Nathan Miller flies past the San Francisco skyline during a practice flight ahead of the Fleet Week performance October 8, 2009 in San Francisco. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – There was a time when Fleet Week was one of the Bay Area’s biggest and most popular annual events. That’s changed in recent years, and organizers are determined to restore Fleet Week to its former glory this year, with a renewed emphasis on emergency preparedness.

Twenty years ago, when the Bay Area still had Navy bases, Fleet Week was considered one of the highlights of the fall calendar. Retired Marine Corps Major General Mike Myatt understands why the excitement has faded.

“San Francisco used to be the most protected city in the United States,” he explained. “We had 12 military bases. They’re all closed.”

Now, he’s chairman of Fleet Week.

“The guidance to me was bring the fleet back to Fleet Week, and make it more than just an air show,” said Myatt.

From October 7 through October 12, there will more ships than ever before, more events, and more sailors and Marines coming ashore.

“They’re serving repeat deployments in our wars. They are fighting against these terrorists, and it’s a chance for us to say thank you for your service,” Myatt said.

The Blue Angels are a crowd favorite, and the annual air show will take place again this year.

This year’s event will also focus on helping the Bay Area get ready for the next big earthquake, fire, or other disaster.

“Please be prepared and have personal preparedness so that you will not be a victim, and you will be able to assist in the recovery,” offered Vicki Hennessy, head of San Francisco’s Department of Emergency Management.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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