The Tustumena will feature large in Port Lions’ celebration of the Fourth of July and its own 50th anniversary.

The ferry — which is celebrating its semicentennial too — is scheduled to leave Kodiak at 9:30 a.m. for Port Lions and will wait for the celebrations to end before heading back to Kodiak via Ouzinkie.

“The Tustumena has agreed to laying over five hours for the event. They’re going to be going directly from Homer to Kodiak, then coming back to Port Lions,” Kathryn Adkins, Port Lions city clerk, told the Mirror.

In the past the Tustumena has gone to Seldovia for its July 4 festivities, she said. The key to arranging the special Fourth of July trip was requesting it from the state well in advance.

And emphasizing the historical connections between the ferry and the village as well, Adkins reports.

“The Tustumena has always been such a big part of Port Lions. It was the first vessel that came into Port Lions back in the ‘60s. It has a long history of coming into Port Lions. We’re trying to connect it that way,” she said.

The Independence Day party includes a parade, a buoy race, an egg toss, a wheelbarrow race and a picnic.

“All the food is free. We’re renting Lions Club tents and we’ll have some seating and a big barbeque and we just pray for good weather,” Adkins said.

Community Hall will have a pictorial history of Port Lions set up as well.

“We’ve got a lot of old pictures and transition to what’s going on today,” Adkins said.

She adds that DJ Mark Ignacio will be providing lots of old time country music from the ‘60s.

“Of course, we’re asking him to play the earthquake song — because that is part of the reason why Port Lions is here,” Adkins said.

(That song, “Alaska Earthquake,” was recorded by Blue Ervin in 1964.)

The Tustumena will leave Kodiak for Port Lions at 9:30 a.m., getting there at noon.

“It’s just a very short walk when you get off the Tustumena to where the events are. Not even a block. Just walk on, walk off,” said Adkins.

Departure from Port Lions is at 5 p.m., with a stop in Ouzinkie. It is due back in Kodiak at 8:00 p.m.

Ferry tickets cost $33 per person one-way for adults. Vehicle fees up to 15 feet are $58 one-way.

Call the Marine Transportation Highway reservations line for more pricing and tickets info at 800-642-0066 or online at www.ferryalaska.com.

For more information about the festivities call the city of Port Lions at 907-454-2332.

Contact Peter J. Mladineo at editor@kodiakdailymirror.com.

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