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New Ferry Arrives May 20th for San Juan Islands

Travelers to Friday Harbor’s Tucker House Inn and Harrison House Suites will have an opportunity to ride on a brand new ferry this summer: The MV Samish.

MV Samish
MV Samish under construction

On May 20th of this year, the Washington State Department of Transportation will launch the second of three new ferries of the Olympic Class. The MV Samish will depart Anacortes that day, beginning its new regular route to the San Juan Islands. The Samish Tribe will be singing, drumming, and sharing their tribal histor y at the Anacortes Ferry Boarding Area. The name Samish is tribal for “giving people”.

If you have ever contemplated purchasing your own ferry in order to avoid lines and reservations, prepare to spend about $126 million. MV Samish has the ability to carry 1,500 passengers and 144 cars; life expectancy for these vessels exceeds fifty years, so the Samish will be a part of our future, and well into the future for the children of San Juan Island.

Decor aboard the Samish will include art work from the Samish Tribe, and a combination of eighteen photorgraphs from locals artists. Nine have been chosen from Anacortes, and the other nine are from the San Juan Islands.

The Washington State Ferry System is the largest one in the USA, and ranked 4th largest in the world.  The System launched operations on June 1, 1951, and it is estimated that 90% of all Washington State citizens ride a ferry.

Construction on MV Samish began in December of 2012, and the vessel is currently undergoing sea trials.

mv samish

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