The Huntington Area Convention & Visitors Bureau invites the community to welcome The American Countess Riverboat to Huntington this Friday, June 2, for the afternoon. 160 passengers are booked on this trip.

The American Countess docked in Huntington in 2022. Photo by Joshua Murdock.

The Countess will arrive around 10:30 to 11 am Friday morning. This particular voyage began in Pittsburgh on May 30 and will conclude in Louisville on June 6. Other stops will include Wheeling, WV; Marietta, Ohio; Augusta, KY; Cincinnati; and Madison, Indiana. The boat will depart around 5 p.m. on Friday.

The Countess has private motor coaches, emblazoned with their logo, that travel with the boat. “Once the passengers disembark, the motor coaches begin a cycle of what they call Hop On Hop Off tours, making continual laps throughout the day so that our visitors can stay at the attractions as long as they like,” explained Compton. We offer them a menu of everything to see and do in our area and then attractions and venues are selected by American Queen Voyages for the stops.

Stops this year include Pullman Square/Downtown Shops, Touma Medical Museum, Central City 14th Street West, The Railroad Museum, Special Collections Morrow Library at Marshall University, and Heritage Station Shops. Some passengers can opt to join the Premium Tour which takes them to Heritage Farm and Huntington Museum of Art.

Greater Huntington Park & Recreation District plays a vital role in the visit as well. “We’ve been working closely with GHPRD to ensure a smooth arrival, docking and refreshing of the boat,” said Compton. “They do an amazing job and the boat crew really appreciates that help.”

To make the tours more personal, a local Ambassador will be on board each motor coach and stationed at each attraction. “This will allow us to interact with these folks on a more personal level,” Compton said, “as well as give us the opportunity to share the story of our community. “I can’t thank our Ambassadors enough. They are taking their time to greet our guests, interact with them, talk to them one on one and answer their questions. That is why we always get such great remarks about our people.”

Compton encourages anyone who may encounter any of the passengers to give them a warm welcome. He also noted that people are welcome to come down to the riverfront to see the boat and take pictures. But due to safety regulations, no one is permitted on the boat and tours cannot be offered.

Additional visits for this year from The American Countess will be on Friday, June 16, and Friday, August 18.

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