Surface Line Week Heats Up the Summer

Story Number: NNS170630-17Release Date: 6/30/2017 1:11:00 PM
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By Lt. Jessica Kellogg, CNSL Public Affairs

NORFOLK (NNS) -- Norfolk's waterfront will come together in a friendly series of challenges and competitions among competitors to prove their toughness, tenacity and expertise during Surface Line Week (SLW), July 24-28.

This year, SLW 2017 is held at Naval Station Norfolk and Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek Fort-Story, providing Sailors and Marines the opportunity to compete in five different categories: toughness, athletics, professional ability, quality of service and recreation.

"This year's theme is the 75th Anniversary of the Guadalcanal Campaign and commemorates the sacrifice and bravery of the surface Navy and Marine Corps during seven major naval battles in the Defense of Guadalcanal," said Lt. Cmdr. Richard Jimenez, SLW 2017 coordinator.

Inspired by the tenacity of the Sailors and Marines at Guadalcanal, and Rear Adm. Patrick Piercey, Commander, Naval Surface Force Atlantic (CNSL), who believes that every Sailor should embody the idea of toughness, SLW 2017 brings a new focus to the ability for Sailors to not only survive, but thrive in adverse conditions.

In toughness category, participants have the opportunity to compete in a tug of war, damage control Olympics, and rescue swimmer challenge, track and field, along with 5k race, swim relays and a fitness challenge.

This category also features two new events: Sailors and Marines will have a chance to show off their best navy related tattoos in heritage ink contest, also Sailor would compete in the USS Buttercup challenge held at Farrier Firefighting School where competitors will race to save a flooding ship using the school's wet trainer simulator where each participations would earn training credit required for their ship.

The professional ability category skill tests the knot tying, navigation, seamanship and boatswain Olympics events that have been present from the earliest days of the Navy.

As reigning champions from Surface Line Week 2016, Sailors of Arleigh Burke-class, guided missile destroyer USS McFaul (DDG 74) look toward another victory.

"I go by Ricky Bobby's values," said Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Gaston Gagne, USS McFaul (DDG 74). "'If you're not first, you're last.' We always aim for first."

Students from Old Dominion University will have an opportunity to compete alongside Navy teams, highlighting the importance of Science Technology Engineering Mathematic (STEM) education. The teams are challenged to build a functional boat out of cardboard boxes and complete a race course in the Cardboard Regatta, and build a kinetic weapon, such as trebuchets, to propel a softball at a target during the Kinetic Weapon challenge.

In a nod to precision, honors, and ceremony throughout the Navy, the quality of service category puts these detail oriented skills to the test. In a change to this year's competition, Culinary Specialist are required on each team to uphold health and safety standards, the cake decorating, navy bean soup cook-off, and the slider challenge are open to all rates and ranks. The winner of the centerpiece competition will have their work presented at the Surface Warrior Ball.

The Barber Competition has also been opened to all rates and ranks to compete.

"In addition to the traditional events, we have added several new competitions to the Surface Line Week schedule which include Show Your Ink, best Navy Heritage Tattoo completion, USS Buttercup Wet Trainer Challenge, Ping Pong Tournament, Mortal Kombat X Video Game Tournament and a Short Film Festival," said Jimenez. "These new events support CNSL promotion of Sailors' Fitness, Identity and Belonging."

"We are looking forward to a great week of competition and camaraderie. Please come out and join us, Sailors Wanted," added Jimenez. "With something for everyone, Surface Line Week 2017 is a great way to celebrate our Surface Navy."

The event is open to all Sailors, Marines, and DoD Civilians attached to SURFLANT tenant commands. Additionally, Midshipmen assigned to these command for their Summer Cruise are encouraged to participate. Registration is open until July 7.

For more information:
Lt. Cdr. Rich Jimenez,, (757) 836-0006
Lt. Andrea Jaramillo,, (757) 836-3016

For more information, visit,, or

For more news from Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, visit

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