About the Pride of the Susquehanna


& Harrisburg River Boat Society

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Children on the river
paddle boat on Susquehanna river

The Susquehanna River Boat Story

The Pride of Susquehanna was built in 1988 with the vision from a Harrisburg businessman, Mike Trephan, and the Harrisburg Area Riverboat Society, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization to attract tourism to Harrisburg as well as residents to enjoy the city and breathtaking views of the Susquehanna River.  Throughout the season, you cannot miss the sight of the timeless red and white striped boat floating on the Susquehanna.

The Pride is one of the only six remaining riverboats left with an authentic paddlewheel in the United States.  The paddlewheel is used for propulsion and steering. The Pride resides on City Island and has never left except the flood in 1996. She is truly incredible, and we are honored to have such a unique vessel in our city’s capital!

The Pride’s production was funded by our local residents and businesses. The riverboat was designed by Joseph Phelen and was constructed by local industry. The Pride is a “replica” of the riverboats from the late 1800s. Her interior is beautiful, polished brass work, the bar has copper interior with brass tacks and a beautiful stained-glass ceiling. The doors are from the RMS Queen Mary, which is a retired ocean liner from 1934.  Although it was believed by the people, that the Pride would surely sink prior to her first launch, we are happy to announce this is our 33rd season and still sailing strong!

The Pride of Susquehanna, in 2016, celebrated their one-millionth passenger, which is an iconic piece of history for the area, and are striving towards their next millionth passenger. She supports City Island and the surrounding Harrisburg area by attracting business.

As the sunset dances across the water and the radiant lights begin to illuminate the city and the famous Walnut Street bridge, you will be able to enjoy the magical ambiance on our cruises such as, Murder Mystery, Maryland Blue Crab Feast, and hearing the catchy rhythm and blues filling the air while drinking with fellow coworkers during Happy Hour on Thursday Jazz Nights!

The Harrisburg Area Riverboat Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization headed by a Board of community leaders whose mission is to increase tourism, facilitate economic development, and provide education on the history and ecology of the Susquehanna River and our region.

Committed to providing education, the Harrisburg Area Riverboat Society also operates the Susquehanna River School, a floating educational tour that teaches children, adults, and seniors about the history, ecology, and environment of the Susquehanna River and our region.

Profits from all cruises fund our community service projects for seniors, children, military veterans, and more.  So, when you “Ride the Pride,” you keep this historical monument afloat and serve our community!

Come join us and discover why the Pride is one of Central Pennsylvania’s most popular and unique destinations!

Fun Facts About the Pride!

  • 65 ft long
  • 24 ft wide
  • Approximately 100 tons
  • Propelled and steered by two 11- by 4-foot paddle wheels

1 of 5 in America!

The Pride resides on City Island as one of five remaining authentic paddlewheel riverboats in the United States—and the only one on the 444-mile-long Susquehanna river!

19th Century Replica

The Pride is a replica of the 19th century riverboats that captured the imagination of the American people and revolutionized river travel and trade in the United States. These riverboats star in cultural artifacts ranging from the 1939 film Gone With the Wind and Mark Twain’s 1883 famous novel Life on the Mississippi to the landmark 1824 Supreme Court case Gibbons v. Ogden.

Recognized on Jeopardy

The Jeopardy TV show featured the Pride in an April 1997 episode where a contestant fielded the prompt, “you can take a 45-minute cruise on the paddle-wheeler Pride of the Susquehanna in this capital city.”

Interior Doors

Interior doors on the Pride are restored from the RMS Queen Mary, a British ocean liner that sailed the North Atlantic in the 20th century.

Come Enjoy The Views On The Beautiful Susquehanna River!

Come join us this year and find out why the Pride is one of Central Pennsylvania’s most popular and unique attractions!

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