Port of Green Bay: Sail into some great prizes with Green Bay’s First Ship Contest

(Green Bay, Wis.) – When it comes to shipping on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway System there’s not much of an off season. The final ship to reach the Port of Green Bay for the 2020 shipping season was the Michigan Great Lakes, which delivered petroleum products to U.S. Oil on Jan. 19. Now, it’s time to launch the First Ship Contest, sponsored by the Port and the Greater Green Bay Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) for the 2021 shipping season.

The Port and CVB are encouraging area residents to submit their guesses for what date and time they believe the 2021 shipping season will begin, which is officially marked by the arrival of the first vessel in Port. The winning entry will be the person whose guess comes closest to the date and time of the arrival of the first ship. The prize package for the First Ship Contest includes a $100 Door County gift certificate (good at a variety of shops, attractions and lodging) and two Port of Green Bay drawstring goodie bags. 

“The opening of the shipping season is dependent on a number of factors, including the weather and when it’s warm enough to melt the ice throughout the St. Lawrence Seaway,” explained Dean Haen, Port Director. “Water conditions in other parts of the Great Lakes play a part as well. So, year to year, the opening can vary by as much as 30 days.”

The range of dates for the first ship arriving in Port has been March 15 to April 5 over the past five years:

  • 2020: March 15
  • 2019: April 5
  • 2018: March 26
  • 2017: March 21
  • 2016: March 21

To enter the First Ship Contest, visit www.greenbay.com/firstshipcontest. One entry per person. If there are multiple correct guesses, the person who submitted their entry first will win the prize package.


About the Port of Green Bay: The Port of Green Bay exists to enhance the prosperity of the people of Northeast Wisconsin by providing facilities and infrastructure able to effectively and efficiently move commodities and goods across the nation. As the western-most port of Lake Michigan, the Port of Green Bay offers a direct route for shipping from the Midwest to the rest of the world. The Port of Green Bay has 14 active terminal operators located along three miles of the Fox River involved in shipping commodities: Ace Marine, C. Reiss Coal Company, Construction Resources Management, Flint Hills Resources, Fox River Terminals, Georgia-Pacific, Graymont, GLC Minerals, KK Integrated Logistics, Lafarge Northern America, RGL, Sanimax, St. Mary’s Cement and U.S. Venture.