Shaker Village to close riverboat cruises
Published 7:00 am Saturday, May 14, 2022
Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill will end operations of its paddlewheel riverboat after 40 years of cruises along the Kentucky River. The nonprofit organization will pursue other opportunities for public programming on the Kentucky River and at Shaker Landing, where the riverboat is docked.
In recent years the age of the vessel, built in 1970, and the difficulty of procuring specialty parts for maintenance had led to challenges in operating cruises as regularly scheduled. This, combined with the rising costs of maritime insurance and the difficulty of dry-docking the vessel for inspections, led to the decision to shut down riverboat operations.
“Our riverboat has been an integral part of the Shaker Village experience for forty years,” said Shaker Village President and CEO Maynard Crossland. “Thousands of people have been introduced to the Kentucky River aboard this boat, and countless wonderful memories have been made. We’ve explored every option to continue riverboat cruises, but have come to the realization that it’s time to move in a new direction. There are a lot of exciting ideas being discussed, and I look forward to announcing our plans very soon.”
Riverboat Cruises began at Shaker Landing in the spring of 1982. The double-decker riverboat had a capacity of 112 passengers, and typically operated from May through October. Annual attendance often exceeded 20,000 passengers for one-hour cruises through the Kentucky River Palisades.
Riverboat Captains, and brothers, Richard and Bruce Herring, have worked on the boat for nearly as long as it has been managed by Shaker Village. Richard began in late summer 1982, while Bruce joined the crew in 1984. The Captains stated, “We’re sorry to see the end of this era at Shaker Village, but we look forward to continuing to work here at the Village and be a part of all the great things to come.”
Shaker Landing remains open to the public for hiking and for canoe and kayak launches. Shaker Village also hosts a monthly series of daytime and nighttime guided paddling experiences on the Kentucky River, with tickets available on the online event calendar.
Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill in Harrodsburg is located just 40 minutes away from Lexington, and 80 minutes outside of Louisville. To plan your visit to Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, or to learn more, visit shakervillageky.org or call 859.734.5411.
About Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill:
Named a top hidden travel destination by BBC News and awarded TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence, Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill is a landmark destination that shares 3,000 acres of discovery in the spirit of the Kentucky Shakers. With 34 original Shaker structures, the site is home to the country’s largest private collection of original 19th century buildings and is the largest National Historic Landmark in Kentucky. Onsite services at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill include overnight accommodations, dining, beverage and catering services, three craft shops, exhibitions in historic buildings, a farm and garden area and 1,000 acres of restored native prairie. For more information, please visit shakervillageky.org.