With the ice-out on Lake Winnipesaukee officially declared, let the boating season begin. Soon to follow will be the return of the M/S Mount Washington to her summer port of Weirs Beach. Upon its annual inspection by the New Hampshire Departments of Safety, the venerable M/S Mount Washington will kick off its 2019 cruising season.
“We’re looking forward to getting back out on the big lake and for a successful cruising season.” says Captain Jim Morash, General Manager of Mount Washington Cruises.
The New Hampshire Department of Safety annually inspects the vessels before issuing the cruise line its license to operate.
“Safety is the number one priority with our vessels and our relationship with the Marine Patrol is very important to us”, says Senior Captain Paul Smith. “We are in contact with them throughout the year and open to their suggestions in how to improve our operation in terms of safety. We’re always looking to make improvements and updating some of the older systems with the newer technology available.”
Upholding a longstanding tradition, Mother’s Day Brunch Cruise, Sunday May 12th will be the first cruise available to the public. The two and a half hour scenic cruises, of Lake Winnipesaukee, feature a champagne brunch and entertainment for all ages. There are two brunch cruises to choose from: 10:00 am or 2:00 pm.
The official 2019 daily cruising season for the M/S Mount Washington run from May 18thuntil October 26thoffering daily cruises from its summer port of Weirs Beach while servicing the ports of Alton Bay, Center Harbor, Meredith and Wolfeboro. Departure times and options vary through the season with July and August having the most cruises available. Options include daily scenic, evening dinner dance and island mail delivery cruises. To learn more about the various vessels (Mount Washington & Doris E.) and to view a more complete schedule with times and ticket prices, visit www.cruisenh.com or call 603-366-5531 to request a brochure to be mailed.
A New Hampshire Tradition for more than 140 Years
Since 1872, Mount Washington Cruises has been offering scenic cruises of New Hampshire’s largest lake, Winnipesaukee, to many families from near and afar. There have only been two vessels, in this time span, to carry the name Mount Washington. The first was a wooden side-wheeler steamer which operated from 1872 until she was destroyed by fire in December of 1939. Although the present vessel started her career as a steamer in the summer of 1940, she was re-outfitted with diesel engines in 1946 to become a motor vessel. Since then there have been many physical changes to the “Mount” to keep up with the demands of the times. Many renovations of the interior and exterior have taken place over the years to present a clean updated look while maintaining the feel of her rich history.
Throughout all this time there has been one constant with the owners and employees of the M/S Mount Washington. A commitment to excellence to be good stewards of this New Hampshire icon to ensure she continues to sail scenic Lake Winnipesaukee, offering her passengers a great opportunity to see the majestic White Mountains and the lake’s many islands from her spacious decks. If you’ve not been aboard in a few years, let the 2019 season be your time to experience her many changes
128 Years of Mail Service on the Big Lake
On June 15ththe M/V Doris E. will begin delivering mail to many of the islands on the big lake. This will mark the 128thyear of continuous mail service on Lake Winnipesaukee.
In 1892 the address of: RFD No. 7, Laconia, New Hampshire was established for lake mail service. This began the tradition of delivering mail to summer island residents of Lake Winnipesaukee. In this time there have been only six mail boats to service this established route. The present mail boat, M/V Doris E., services the contract which has been held by the Winnipesaukee Flagship Company since 1969.
Since 1906, with the Uncle Sam I, the mail boat has taken fare paying passengers on her mail trips for the enjoyment of scenic cruising. The Doris E. continues this tradition today. Of most significance, in 1916 an act of Congress granted the Mail Boat on Lake Winnipesaukee the right to cancel mail, making her a full fledge Post Office. This is a right she holds to this day and allows her to beam with pride at being the “Oldest Floating Post Office in America”.
In this day of closing Post Offices and USPS cut backs, we are very lucky to still have this jewel on the lake. This season, from June 15thto September 14 the U.S. Mail Boat, Doris E., will operate two cruises a day (11 & 2) six days a week (Mon-Sat). Departures are from the Mount Washington docks at the Weirs; tickets are $28 for adults and $14 for children. Come and experience a bit of true Americana and don’t forget to mail your post cards from the Mailboat with that special cancellation.
Mother’s Day Brunch begins 2019 Season
The 2019 cruising season kicks off on May 12th, with Mother’s Day Brunch Cruises aboard the M/S Mount Washington. Treat Mom on her special day with a cruise, a brunch and entertainment. Tickets are very affordable at $49 for adults and $24 for children ages 5-12 (under age 5 go free). Departing Weirs Beach at 10:00 am and 2:00 pm, the 2-1/2 Hour scenic cruises include your scrumptious Sunday Brunch buffet and entertainment for the whole family to enjoy. Call our ticket office at 1-888-THE MOUNT (843-6686) or online at www.CruiseNH.com. Don’t wait too long though, as these cruises are popular, and we are limited in space.
Ticket Ordering is Easy
With ever changing technology trends we have made ticket ordering for our cruises very easy. You have several options to purchase cruise tickets. You can order tickets online through our secure order form on our website (www.CruiseNH.com), you can call our ticket office at (603) 366-5531 (toll free 888-843-6686 for out-of-state callers), or feel free to visit our ticket office in person, located at 211 Lakeside Avenue in Laconia NH.
We accept all major credit cards. Although you may pre-purchase daytime tickets online for the Mount Washington you may also buy them at our ticket office on the day you wish to cruise. Please note that all cruise schedules are subject to change; and often do during our early spring and late fall seasons. It is always advisable to call ahead to be sure your cruise is running that day.
Need a schedule? Check cruisenh.com or call us and we’ll gladly send you one. We also distribute our brochure throughout the state to many restaurants, attractions, state rest areas and lodging places.
Some of the Special Events for 2019 include:
- Mothers’ Day Champagne Brunch; Sunday, May 12
- Memorial Day Weekend Reduced Ticket Offer
- Salute to Service dinner/dance cruise; Saturday, May 25
- Laconia Motor Cycle Week; Shuttles from Meredith to Weirs will operate Thursday – Saturday. Call (603-366-5531) for schedule information.
- July 4th Fireworks Party Cruise
- Halloween Masquerade Ball; Saturday, October 26.
Some of our Ongoing Events include:
- Sunday Brunch Cruises (every Sunday throughout the season)
- Summer Evening Dinner Dance Cruises (Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturdays; July & August)
- Monday Evenings Senior Discount (July & August)
- Wednesday Evenings Kids Go Free (July & August)
- Fall Foliage Dinner Cruises (Weekends in September & October)
Visit www.cruisenh.com or call our office at 603-366-5531 for more information.