Ferry system offers one-day getaway as part of anniversary

Posted: Monday, July 21, 2003

The Alaska Marine Highway System is planning three more National Scenic Byway Designation ceremonies, the unveiling of a commemorative work of art and a one-day getaway as part of its National Scenic Byway Sailabration and 40th Anniversary Celebration.

On Sunday, July 27, the ferry Kennicott will depart from Auke Bay on its regularly scheduled trip south. Once the vessel is under way, ferry system manager Capt. George Capacci will officially designate the newest member of the fleet as part of the Alaska Marine Highway Scenic Byway.

Similar designations will be made at the Petersburg and Wrangell terminals. In Wrangell, after a plaque presentation, marine artist Brenda Schwartz will unveil her latest work, which commemorates the system's 40th anniversary.

The ferry system is offering a special round-trip fare for travel between Juneau and Wrangell on July 27.

The Kennicott will depart southbound from Juneau's Auke Bay terminal at 5:30 a.m., arriving in Petersburg at 1:30 p.m. and Wrangell at 5:30 p.m.

The ferry Matanuska will depart northbound from Wrangell at 10:45 p.m. Sunday and will be back at Auke Bay at 10:30 a.m. Monday.

The round-trip fare, good between Juneau and Wrangell on July 27 (on those specific vessels), is $75. Children 2-11 are $25 each. Children under 2 travel free.

Tickets can be purchased at Centennial Hall, the Glacier Highway Reservations Center and the Auke Bay Terminal, or by phone at 465-3941.

The National Scenic Byways Program recognizes certain roads as National Scenic Byways or All-American Roads based on their archaeological, cultural, historic, natural, recreational and scenic qualities.

There are 95 such designated byways in 39 states, only three of which are in Alaska - the Glenn Highway, the Alaska Marine Highway and Alaska's All-American Road, the Seward Highway.

Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta designated the marine highway in June of 2002, the first marine-based byway.

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