The bow will be re-attached Wednesday morning.
Despite the recession in Northeast Ohio, the Miller Ferry Boat Line that services South Bass and Middle Bass Islands has been doing well.
Business has been so good that the company decided that it needed a bigger ferry to accommodate the increased traffic to South Bass Island.
Scott Market, vice president of the Miller Boat Line, looked at the big ferry in the dry dock and said, "We are very blessed with our business. I don't know what else to say."
Market added, "At the beginning of this season, no one was sure how things were going to be with this economy. We did great."
The 40-foot section was fabricated inside the yard at the Great Lakes Shipyard and then carefully positioned to the hull.
Great Lakes Shipyard Project Engineer Thomas Perk stepped ashore from the floating work station and said, "Now that it's in place, right now we're just aligning everything. Thats the detailed part, making sure every inch, every millimeter, matches and lines up perfectly."
Added Perk, "So far, so good."
All of the work on the ferry is being supervised by the U. S. Coast Guard Marine Inspection Unit, headquartered in Cleveland.
U.S.C.G inspector Nick Suvak said, "We've been checking the welds and inspecting the steel, making sure that it's the proper grade of steel and making sure it's American-made."
The addition will make the "Put In Bay" 136 feet overall. Ferry Captain David Bianchi will be at the helm in the spring when the ferry is ready for delivery back to South Bass Island.
Bianchi said, "Every boat has its own personality and it handles differently than every other boat."
"This will be our biggest boat," said Bianchi. "I remember the first time I got on the "Islander," which was the first of our bigger boats at the time. I stood on the bridge and thought, 'my God, this thing is huge!' Of course, it was much smaller than this boat."
Captain Bianchi says handling the new boat will be "exciting, and at times challenging."
As the bow of the boat rose high into the air, Market looked up and said, "I have a lot of pride that we're a tight run family business. All our employees are local and we work together as a big family."
Added Market, "This is big for all of us."