Conn DOT Commissioner James P. Redeker hosted a “First Crossing” party on the Chester-Hadlyme Ferry Saturday afternoon for local residents who helped raise public support for the ferry last summer when the ferry service was slated to be closed as part of the state’s austerity program.
After the state decided to fund continued ferry service for two more years, Commissioner Redeker formed a joint state-local task force to work on ways to reduce the ferry’s operating deficit by increasing ridership and increasing revenues.
Standing with Commissioner Redeker are Hadlyme members of the task force: left to right – Susannah Griffin, Wendy Dow Miller, Curtis Michael, and Dr. Matthew Elgart.
Despite temperatures hovering in the low 40s and a damp wind gusting up the Connecticut River, more than 70 local residents from both sides of the river turned out to ride the on the Selden III and celebrate the start of another year of ferry service between Chester and Hadlyme. Daily ferry service officially started on Sunday April 1, continuing 243 years of ferry service first started by Jonathan Warner in 1769.