“It’s so rewarding to get here today. Our whole team, from the painters to the mechanics, has been working tirelessly to make this happen, now we can get the season going. “
Captain Billy Shepler - Shepler's Boat Line
Mackinac Island, MI The first ferry boat of the 2014 summer season has made the trip between St. Ignace and Mackinac Island. The Shepler's Boat Line Sacre Bleu arrived at Mackinac Island today after an-hour long trip across the Straits of Mackinac, in time for the opening of the Grand Hotel, which is celebrating its 128th season today.
An "ice bridge" formed between St. Ignace and Mackinac Island this winter that lasted over 80 days, which was the previous record. The spring has been cool so far, making the Straits of Mackinac thaw more slowly than usual.
This initial ferry fun means that passenger service will be able to start soon. Shepler's couldn't put a specific time when passenger service will begin, but said the boat will run, bringing horses and freight to the island.
Grand Hotel President, Dan Musser said, “we would like to thank Shepler’s, our transportation partner and the US Coast Guard for their continuous efforts to open the waters for our guests”.
People interested in visiting the island should contact Shepler and Star Line to find out when they will start passenger service from St. Ignace. There is no date yet for when the Mackinaw City ferry docks will open.