06/10/19 #SheplersNewRide Officially In Production

Building projects typically break ground to kick things off.  In our case, we break metal – actually cut it to be specific.  Special thanks to our friends at Moran Iron Works for a very special day.  Our first piece of metal was cut for production on our new motor vessel.  Follow our journey and be…

06/09/19 Announcing #SheplersNewRide

We’re thrilled to announce that we’re building a new boat! A made in Michigan motor vessel will be built by the team at Moran Iron Works in Onaway. Follow our next adventure using #SheplersNewRide as we sail into the next generation of ferry service to Mackinac Island.

04/29/19 2019 MPC Travel Tips

Welcome Aboard for the Mackinac Policy Conference! Tickets Your Conference voucher received in your confirmation packet is your ferry ticket – no exchange necessary for an actual Shepler’s boarding pass.  Be sure to keep the return portion of your voucher for your trip off the Island.  If you do not have the return portion, you…

03/22/19 2019 Win-Some Women Spring Ferry Schedule

Welcome to the Spring session of Win-Some Women!  Please see below for the schedule of departures for May 14th – 17th, 2019.  The additional departures that we are running for the conference are shaded in grey and the blue times are Mighty Mac Departures that go under the Mackinac Bridge on the way to the…

2/28/19 Mackinac Island Dock Expansion Updates

Mackinac Island Dock Expansion When we first started telling you about our Mackinac Island Dock expansion project back in the fall of 2017, we had no idea the impact the weather would have on the construction.  Cold winters have made building a challenge, but a year and a half into the build, and we are…

02/14/19 Puppy Love From Your Pet-Friendly Ferry

We are celebrating our furriest, friendliest, tail-waggingest guests!  We LOVE your pets and there are many ways that we show it. Your pet will always get a free ride on Shepler’s Mackinac Island Ferry.  We love little dogs, big dogs, dogs with squishy faces, dogs with big noses, dogs with big floppy ears, and dogs…

01/29/19 2019 Schedules Announced

In preparation of our 2019 season that starts on April 21st, we have released our ferry and cruise schedules.  You can also purchase ferry tickets here. Our ferry schedule has more departures that ever to fit your travel needs.  All of our boats are fast and will get you to the Island in a quick…

01/29/19 2019 4th of July Cruise Details

Join us in celebrating Independence Day on the Straits of Mackinac. The 4th of July is a great time to be in Northern Michigan and we have the best place for you to watch the fireworks explode overheard as we float on the water in view of the Mackinac Bridge. We have fireworks cruises leaving…

01/21/19 2019 Parking Information

We are excited to announce another enhancement to our operation.  We are implementing a new and improved parking system designed for optimum efficiency for you, our guests. St. Ignace Guests If you travel with us through St. Ignace, please proceed to the dock for all parking.  The entire lot at the St. Ignace Dock is…

01/18/19 2019 Night Sky Cruise Descriptions

Join us for a wonderful night under the stars.  Mary Stewart Adams will provide her signature storytelling of sky lore and the celestial events that are happening right before your eyes as we cruise the waters of the Straits of Mackinac. Saturday, June 15th  Strawberry Moon Cruise   8:45 p.m. – 10:15 p.m. The Strawberry Moon lends…

10/31/18 Another Season In The Books

Every year we get to the last day of the season and think, “where did the time go?” It’s no different this year as we end our 73rd season, and we want to say thank you for making 2018 a huge success for us. We always find this time of year bittersweet.  It is a…

09/27/18 Seven Tips for the Best Fall on Mackinac

Every season has its own special qualities on Mackinac Island, but Fall seems to bring out the true beauty.  Warm breezes turn crisp and the deep green of the pine trees mingle with the flaming reds and yellows of the Maple and Beech trees.  If you are planning a trip to enjoy the Island’s majestic…

07/10/18 Choose Shepler’s For The 2018 Bridge Walk

Ride Shepler’s and walk the ENTIRE Mackinac Bridge this 2018 Labor Day!   Mackinaw City to St. Ignace SOLD OUT This Labor Day, we are excited to be offering three direct departures for the morning bridge walk. Join us and enjoy a complete walk from peninsula to peninsula. See the schedule below: Times 6:00 am – Departure from…

06/08/18 Lilac Season on Mackinac

The lilacs are in bloom and the 70th Annual Mackinac Island Lilac Festival has begun! We are so thankful to the French for bringing these fragrant flowering trees bursting with a plethora of purple and white to our little island in northern Lake Huron.  It allows us to celebrate every June as the flowers bloom. …

01/19/18 All Smiles at #TeamShepler

Do you love your job? We do.  And it shows in the smiles that you see when you ride our ferries. As any company can, we could give you a list of benefits and perks of working for us. But, when we start recruiting new cast members, we aren’t looking for people who just like…

11/07/17 Thanks for a Great Season

As we enter November, the month for Thanksgiving, we can’t help but to think back on this year and be grateful to all of our guests and cast members that made our 72nd year a huge success.  We would not be here without all of you and your continued support of our family business. Now…

It’s Building Season on Mackinac

Even before the 2017 season was over, we were planning for 2018.  We have quite a few improvement projects in the works and they started November 1st, the day after we closed for the 2017 navigation season.  We are certainly not wasting any time! Mackinaw City Parking Our top priority in the off-season for Mackinaw…

Here we grow again…

If you have ridden with us in the past few years, you will have experienced that our Island dock is small, congested, and typically just hard to navigate.  This has not gone unnoticed by our team.  Our company has never had growth like we have this year.  With the increase in tourism throughout Northern Michigan,…

Mackinac Bridge Closure for Labor Day

The Mackinac Bridge will be closed to vehicles from 6:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Labor Day (Monday, September 4th).  This is the first time that the Bridge has been closed for the Labor Day walk, so authorities are not sure what to expect for traffic back-ups. If you are coming to Mackinaw City that…

5 Best Reasons to Celebrate Fall on Mackinac Island

One more month of Summer.  We keep telling ourselves that.  We are always sad to see the warm weather leave us, but as summer fades to fall, we find ourselves in our favorite season of the year. There is nothing like fall on Mackinac Island, and here are our top 5 reasons why… 5 – The…

Race to Mackinac

It is yacht race season on Mackinac Island! If you have ever been to the Island during the two weeks that comprise our sailing season, you know that the streets are hopping and the Pink Pony is packed to the railing.  Every year thousands of racers start the trek north from Chicago or Port Huron…

St. Ignace Ferry Schedule Change Friday, June 9th

Due to a high volume of group reservations on Friday, June 9th, we have to cancel the following departures: 9:00 am  Ferry St. Ignace to Mackinac Island 9:30 am Ferry Mackinac Island to St. Ignace We do start our full schedule that day in St. Ignace, running every 30 minutes. See our full schedule here.…

Summer is here!

We always mark Memorial weekend as the first sign of summer, and this year it did not disappoint! Temperatures in the low 70s, not a cloud in the sky, and the wind even cooperated (on Saturday, at least).  As you start planning for your summer Mackinac vacation, we want to let you know a little…

Winter Improvements (Part 2)

The Hope The Hope’s story started in 2009 when the need for a larger aft deck presented itself.  Families were starting to travel with more bikes and more luggage.  While the 150 person capacity was still sufficient, the luggage area was lacking.  We contracted Moran Iron Works to lengthen The Hope’s aft deck by 17…

Winter Improvements (Part 1)

When winter hits the Straits of Mackinac, we don’t go into hibernation.  We take advantage of the “down-time” to make improvements to our fleet. One of our main projects over the winter has been the repowering of the Felicity. When you change the engines on a boat, it’s not a simple job.  The fact that…

What does “Opening Day” Mean to Us?

When you hear the term “Opening Day”, you might imagine a fresh cut infield and the smack of a bat hitting a leather-covered ball. When we hear “Opening Day”, we are immediately overwhelmed with the feeling of coming home. The boats wake up from their long winter hibernation, and the faces that we have missed…

Additional Information about Shepler’s Lighthouse Cruises

Each lighthouse cruise is narrated by members of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association. Shepler’s donates 10% of all proceeds to the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association to assist in their preservation efforts. Guests may cancel their tickets up to 48 hours prior to the cruise date for a full refund. Cancellations within the 48…

Safety First – 5 Questions with Billy Shepler

Have you noticed a difference in the way our boats look this year? It’s not that they are clean and sparkly, they’ve always been that way. It’s not that they have been painted a different color. What you are noticing is that we do not have orange life floats on the back. The iconic orange…