June 9, 2015

Swan Island now open for its 50th season

RICHMOND, Maine - Swan Island is now open for a great 50th season of camping, hiking and wildlife viewing. Several new features are now available here, including a new larger ferry, kayak rentals from the island campground, new interpretive signage, docks at the campground and a 15 & under kids-only trout fishing pond with free equipment loans. Many different events are being held on and around the Island throughout the summer and fall. Check out the event calendar on our website www.maine.gov/swanisland to sign up for one of the many planned programs; or visit to just explore on your own.

The next scheduled Swan Island event is Sunday June 21 – Father’s Day, with free Admission for Maine Residents. There will be four scheduled ferry trips throughout the day. Bring a picnic and spend a great day outdoors with Dad. In addition, the historic Tubbs-Reed house, the first house you’ll see on the Island overlooking the new Richmond/Dresden Bridge, will be open to the public today! There is period furniture, Island artifacts and new interpretive signage to see here. Call 547-5322 FMI.

Swan Island, known for its abundant and often quite visible wildlife, is actually an abandoned 18th and 19th century town called Perkins Township, and has long been recognized for its varied and interesting history. The wildlife management area, about 2,000 acres in size, is located in the Kennebec River between the towns of Richmond and Dresden.

Today the island is managed for a variety of wildlife and enjoyed by many visitors each season. Five of the historic homesteads still stand. The cemetery and landscape along with old stone walls and other remnants stand testament to the islands rich history.

The Island's public visitation season runs from May through October. There are ten Adirondack shelters available for overnight use; picnic facilities for day use; modern bathroom facilities at the campground; drinking water; hiking trails; kayak rentals; and wildlife viewing.

If you wish to visit the Swan Island Wildlife Management Area, you must make reservations for the ferry and/or campground. You may access the island, for day use, via personal canoe or kayak without a reservation; admission fees may be deposited in iron rangers. All visitor fees are as follows: 5 and under free! Day use - $ 8.00. For overnight camping - $8 plus $20 per site per night. Please visit our website at www.maine.gov/swanisland for more information and details about the island; or find us on Facebook!

Swan Island, also called the Steve Powell Wildlife Management Area, is owned and maintained by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Operation and maintenance of the campground and public use areas are supported by your visitation fees. The wildlife management work is supported by revenue from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses, and federal monies under the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program.