Questions surround the future of the Arnold Transit ferry service

T he future of the longest running ferry service to Mackinac Island is up in the air.

T he future of the longest running ferry service to Mackinac Island is up in the air.

A number of events over the last few weeks have area residents and business leaders wondering if the Arnold Transit Company will run this summer.

A rnold's docks are vacant. No workers were preparing for the start of the summer season and many of the ships were out of the water when we arrived.

M ackinac Island leaders say the ferry company still hasn't responded to the island's request for a letter of intent on the companies plans for its services this season.

T hat deadline was Monday.

But Arnold's parent company, based out of Ohio says they do plan on running trips to the island this summer. They say they have filed the requested paperwork with island officals and at this time they are expecting to operate. They told us they recieved the request on Thursday and replied on Saturday, and aren't certain why questions are swirling around their intentions.

Still one of the island's largest resorts switched services after they said Arnold's season outlook was uncertain.

"U nfortunately the management of Arnold conveyed to us a deep uncertainty of whether or not they were going to continue to operate," Bradley McCallum, Mission Point Resort Manager said. "And being so close to the season and wanting to protect our guests and our island visitors we decided to make a move."

S o what would it mean for tourists if Arnold Transit would not operate this summer?

C hris Shepler from Shepler's Ferry Service said his customers wouldn't notice any change in wait time or prices.

T he third ferry service to the island is Starline and it will also be running this summer.

T he Arnold Line Ferry has been offering rides to and from Mackinac Island since 1878.

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