The Volendam was the first cruise ship to stop in Ketchikan in 2014.

The Volendam was the first cruise ship to stop in Ketchikan in 2014.

More than five months before the 2015 season is due to start, the City of Ketchikan has released a draft of next summer’s cruise ship schedule.

The city’s Port and Harbors Director Steve Corporon has projected a cruise visitor count of 940,000 next year. That’s about 6 percent more than this year’s total of 884,503.

According to the draft calendar, the first ship is the Ruby Princess, and will arrive on May 1. The last ship of the 2015 cruise season will be the Norwegian Sun, which will blow the final farewell horn at 6 p.m. Sept. 26.

Corporon writes that once the season hits its stride in mid-May, the busiest days will be Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays. Those days often have four or five ships scheduled to arrive every week.

Other days of the week will see somewhat lighter cruise traffic – between two and four ships each week.

Corporon notes that the passenger-count distribution between the city’s four cruise ship berths is 23 percent for Berth 1; 24 percent for Berth 2; 28 percent for Berth 3; and 24 percent for Berth 4. Merchants all along the downtown cruise ship dock tend to be very interested in how many passengers are docked at each berth, because that can make a difference in how much money a shop makes.

The city has scheduled a public meeting to get input about the draft calendar and proposed berth assignments. That’s set for 1 p.m. Jan. 6 in City Council chambers.