July 25 – Alexandria, VA
On July 25, the Thomas Jefferson, one of a fleet of research and survey vessels used by NOAA to improve our understanding of the marine environment, moored in Alexandria, Virginia, to kick off one of the highlights of NOAA’s ongoing 200th Anniversary celebration.
The festivities began with the opening ceremony. Speaking at the ceremony were many NOAA officials and the Mayor of Alexandria. One of the highlights of the ceremony was the unveiling of an oil painting of the Thomas Jefferson.
Tours were given for the rest of the day Wednesday and public tours were given all day Thursday. All together, over 700 people visited the ship, including the Oceanographer of the Navy and a group of students from Thomas Jefferson High School in Alexandria.
Tours conducted for visitors included demonstrations of the ship’s various survey acquisition systems and colorful, high-resolution data products. Visitors were also entertained with stories of past hydrographic adventures, such as the relief efforts provided by the ship after the devastating hurricane season of 2005.