GREENVILLE – A fire aboard the Katahdin steamboat abruptly halted cruises earlier this summer, but now the 104-year-old vessel is back and trying to make up for lost income.
“The boat is our primary source of revenue,” said Katahdin Cruises Executive Director Liz McKeil. “It probably brings in about eighty percent of our annual budget.”
In late July, the vessel’s engine caught fire. Crew members spent over a month rebuilding the engine, but McKeil says they’re working on a more permanent fix.
“We’re going to be starting a capital campaign to raise I think probably about a quarter million dollars,” said McKeil.
The money will go towards a new engine. McKeil says in the meantime they will operate with the one they rebuilt.
The boat is important to the people of Greenville. When they heard about the accident, many were quick to offer a helping hand.
“We’ve had lots of support from everybody local,” said Katahdin Cruises Captain Randy Gartley.
On Saturday, Katahdin Cruises will be offering a free ride to any first responder who shows a proper credential. McKeil says it’s their way of saying thank you to all the first responders who came to help with the fire.