VIDEO: Celebrating West Seattle’s new King County Water Taxi vessel, M/V Doc Maynard

And with that, the M/V Doc Maynard was officially welcomed to the King County Water Taxi fleet – though it’s not expected to join the West Seattle-Downtown Seattle run until December – after filling in for its twin M/V Sally Fox on the Vashon run for a while, and after some work is done at Seacrest to accommodate its size and configuration. The celebration at Pier 50 downtown included speeches and even stories – King County Councilmember Joe McDermott, drawing on a past gig as an Underground Tour guide, told the tale of the boat’s namesake:

After the speeches and bottle-smashing, it was out onto the bay for a test run. Here’s a quick look around the top deck at the stern (there’s room for more than 30 to stand at the bow, too) – mouse over the Instagram image to bring up the “play” button:

We have lots of photos, video, and info to add once we’re back at HQ.

ADDED FRIDAY NIGHT: More from the event – first, the group shot of West Seattleites who took the short “maiden voyage” after the ceremony, out into the bay and back:

(Photo courtesy KCDOT)

The county points out that the space on the bow is one thing differentiating Doc Maynard from Sally Fox – since the DM will travel mostly in calmer Elliott Bay waters, rather than across the heart of the sound as SF does to get to Vashon Island. Here’s what it looks like on the inside upper passenger deck, which has a view directly into the wheelhouse:

On the outer lower deck, at the stern, some of the bicycle storage:

The event wasn’t just a celebration of the new boat – funded mostly with a grant from the federal government (which had a rep on hand too) – but also of the Water Taxi’s history. It was pointed out that it now goes back 17 years, into the late 1990s, at which time then-King County Councilmember Greg Nickels championed it as a “demonstration project.” Introduced as “the father of the Water Taxi,” he spoke today too:

Nickels noted that the fellow West Seattleites with whom he stood, County Executive Dow Constantine and Councilmember McDermott, also worked with him back in the Water Taxi’s early days. If you’ve been around a while, you’ll recall other boats that have handled the Water Taxi’s run; while the way-back boats weren’t present for the ceremony, the other three current boats were out on the water as the Doc Maynard pulled away:

Besides the Sally Fox, you saw in that clip the current West Seattle boat, the Spirit of Kingston, and the current backup, the Melissa Ann, which is leased. SofK will be the backup boat once Doc Maynard goes into service.

3 Replies to "VIDEO: Celebrating West Seattle's new King County Water Taxi vessel, M/V Doc Maynard"

  • Audrey Lincoff September 18, 2015 (9:44 pm)

    Awesome celebration – thank you to King County for a really fun morning! And thanks to Harold from Belltiwn for the great moment.

  • SGG September 20, 2015 (9:53 pm)

    So the politicians get to do a fake opening day celebration in good weather, but it really isn’t supposed to open until December?


    • WSB September 20, 2015 (10:00 pm)

      Nope, it wasn’t an “opening day” celebration. It was a dedication/christening of the boat, before it goes into service – just happens that the service is going to be the Vashon-Seattle run for starters while Sally Fox goes in for some work. That boat was dedicated/christened (we covered: ) about a week and a half before it went into service. The only irregularity here seems to be that Doc Maynard was delivered a bit early and so the tweaks that need to be made to the Seacrest dock haven’t been finished yet; that, we’ll be following up on, having just picked up on it toward the end of Friday’s event – TR

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