The Black Ball Ferry Line is sailing again after 18 months of suspended service, reconnecting the shores of the Olympic Peninsula with Victoria, British Columbia. The community of Port Angeles applauded and greeted the first passengers from Canada as they disembarked.
The iconic and beloved MV Coho is the only vessel on the Port Angeles-Victoria route. During its 60 years of service, the ferry has carried millions of cars and passengers. The road is important to communities on both sides of the border, as the traffic promotes tourism and stimulates the local economy.
A pillar of the community
According to a 2019 economic impact study, the MV Coho The ferry route averages over $ 5 million a month in Clallam County. It’s a responsibility the Black Ball Ferry Line takes seriously, according to co-owner and vice president of marketing Ryan Malane.
âIt was important for us to maintain a crew to keep the MV Coho in optimal operating condition, even when we have been shut down, âsaid David Booth, CFO and co-owner of Black Ball Ferry Line. âWe would get the boat out every six weeks and put the machinery to work so that we were ready to go as soon as the border reopened. “
Anchoring with First Fed
During the pandemic, First Fed helped small businesses take advantage of government assistance through Paycheck Protection Program (P3) Loans and the Main Street Loan Program.
âIt is important for us to support local businesses that strengthen our communities,â said Andrew Korchemniy, Director of Commercial Relations for First Fed. âThe Black Ball Ferry Line provides an important service to the Olympic Peninsula and to our neighbors in Canada. We were honored to help facilitate their loans to support them during the pandemic. “
After working with First Fed on loan programs, Black Ball Ferry Line also transferred its payroll and direct deposit accounts to First Fed.
âWe loved First Fed’s commitment to invest in community businesses,â Malane recalled. âThey were extremely welcoming and caring, which we hadn’t found with other banks.â
Ready to set sail
The Black Ball Ferry Line website serves more than just a convenient place to make reservations and purchase ferry tickets. It is also kept up to date with the latest COVID testing requirements for crossing the border as well as providing travel packages and services for your trip once you have landed.
âYou can get some of the best deals you’ll see on stays in Victoria right now through our packages,â noted Malane. âHotels have really embraced the US market when they come back to Victoria. They offer us phenomenal prices that we pass on to the customer.
Currently, the ferry operates on its normal winter schedule, two round trips per day. While it’s important to use caution when traveling, proper planning can help ensure an experience that is both safe and fun. From the latest border crossing information to hotel packages, Black Ball Ferry Line employees are happy to help plan your trip.
First Fed is a member of the FDIC and equal real estate lender. Our sales team works with businesses of all sizes, including small businesses like Black Ball Ferry. Meet our team at ourfirstfed.com/business