ALGOMA, Wis. (WFRV) – Visitors don’t usually come to Algoma via the water.

But that’s going to change this summer when the Viking cruise line makes several stops in Algoma. City leaders have already begun preparing for the visit and on Thursday afternoon they held an informational meeting with local business owners. Cruise ships have stopped in Green Bay before and representatives from Green Bay were in attendance to talk about the experience.

Viking cruise ships will make stops in Algoma on eight different dates this summer. The first one is June 16. It’s part of the cruise line’s Great Lakes tour trip and Algoma is the only stop in Wisconsin. It also hits destinations in Minnesota, Michigan, and Canada.

“The fact that other folks from across the world would be interested in coming and visiting Algoma is exciting,” said Algoma alderman John Pabich.

Pabich said he expects the economic impact of the cruise line guests coming to Algoma to be modest. He said most of the guests will be going on excursions like touring Lambeau Field. In addition to the over 350 guests on the cruise, Pabich said he expects people to come from other local communities to see the ship pull into Algoma.

Pabich said the big goal is to make Algoma memorable for the people on the cruise.

“That they want to come back and explore more,” said Pabich. “That they just touched the surface of what this place has to offer, what this location has to offer.”

At the meeting, city leaders discussed with local business owners ways to accomplish that goal. They discussed everything from greeting the cruise passengers with band music to preparing gift baskets with things that are uniquely Algoma. They also brainstormed ways to showcase their city in the best ways possible.

“Number one it’s going to be friendly Algoma, because we are all friendly here and it’s a family atmosphere,” said Tina Marie the owner of Tina Marie’s boutique.

“I would love everyone to see that Algoma is this friendly little town, with lots of friendly people,” said Lee Haasch who owns a charter fishing business called Haasch Guide Service Inc. “Put our best foot forward and show everybody what Algoma has to offer.

The Viking cruise will make eight more stops in Algoma during the summer of 2024.