“We believe giving back to the communities that we operate within is a must.”-Misty Martinchek
This motto puts meaning behind the contributions of Shepler’s Mackinac Island Ferry in Mackinaw City, MI—to their employees, their surrounding environment, and for betterment of the region. For the past two years, Shepler’s has either sponsored a cast member to attend a MCFT event or they have sponsored the event itself. Aside from their involvement with Michigan Cares for Tourism, the many ways they give to society is huge. Corporate Social Responsibility…they get it.
- As a part of the Shepler’s Gives Back program, Shepler’s Cast Members fill the volunteer schedule for a whole day of bell ringing for the Salvation Army of Cheboygan
- Shepler’s Cast Members join others in the community for the Cheboygan United Way Walk for Warmth. This sponsored walk raises funds to help Cheboygan County families pay for heat throughout the winter months. Shepler’s also contributes a monetary donation to this event.
- Shepler’s Cast Members volunteer for the Adopt-A-Highway program to clean up a 2 ½ mile stretch of I-75 three times per year. They want to keep the environment clean for residents and visitors.
- Every year, Shepler’s participates in a movement—Bridge Fare – Pay It Forward, where they pick a day and pay for about 10 vehicles’ Mackinac Bridge fare. The recipient of the bridge fare receives a card asking them to pay it forward.
Shepler’s conducts approximately 40 Lighthouse Cruises annually. $500 of the proceeds of each cruise are donated to the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association, who use the money to help with upkeep and repairs to the lighthouses in the Straits of Mackinac. This began when their cruises began—in 1998. That’s almost 20 years of giving! To date, their donations have totaled over $250,000 to help preserve these historic icons!
Through constant maintenance, upgrading our equipment, and consistent training of our captains, Shepler’s has been able to reduce the amount of fuel used per trip to the Island and with that; the amount of oil they use has been reduced. By running equipment more efficiently, they reduce their carbon footprint.
Along with their external initiatives, they began a program three years ago called Shepler’s beneFIT. The program goal is to keep employees moving and eating healthy. The program lasts 13 weeks and consists of 1 weekly challenge. If the employee completes all 13 challenges, their name is put in a drawing for a $150 gift card for MC Sports. Some of the past challenges include: No pop for a week, Bike around Mackinac Island, Take a hike, and Eat 5 fruits and veggies each day. The challenges start off easy and get progressively harder throughout the summer. Cast members love the challenges that combine getting in shape with having fun!
Michigan Cares for Tourism is proud of the efforts of Shepler’s Mackinac Island Ferry. Their internal and external efforts have lasting effects—which speak directly to CSR. A huge high five to this awesome organization!