Star Line Ferry

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The Star Line ferry La Salle docked at Mackinac Island, Michigan

Star Line Ferry is the newest ferry boat company serving Mackinac Island in Michigan. They currently run the most daily departures to Mackinac Island.


Star Line Ferry was started by Tom Pfeiffelmann, Sam McIntire, and others in the late 1970s. The company started off previously as Argosy Boat Line. The company was named Star Line after the 5 original stockholders making up a 5 pointed star. They operated slower ferries including the La Salle and Nicolet as well as the Treasure Islander and Flamingo. In 1979 Star Line brought their first fast ferry, Marquette, to the Island. Over the next few years the old La Salle and Nicolet were replaced with sisters to the Marquette. When Arnold Transit Company introduced their catamaran Island Express in 1987, Star Line responded with Radisson, an 85-foot fast ferry which was modeled after a luxury yacht. She boasted two propellers as the other ferries had, but also had twin hydro-jets for added speed. One hydro pointed out of the water making an incredible plume of water behind the boat. In time the La Salle, Nicolet, and Marquette added hydro-jets. In 1990 Star Line added Cadillac and in 1993 added Joliet. These boats were built in the style of the Radisson. In 2005, Marquette was sold to Davis Park Marine of Patchogue, NY. She was replaced by the larger Marquette II. And in 2006, Nicolet was sold to Davis Park Marine to repower the Joliet. In November, 2016, Star Line announced that it would be purchasing the majority of competitor Arnold Transit Company's assets.


Star Line boasts five hydro-jet ferries: La Salle, Radisson, Cadillac, Joliet, and Marquette II and the freight boat: Anna May. In addition, they also own several former Arnold Transit Company's classic ferries that offer discounted rates during peak season at the cost of an increased duration.


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