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May 19 will be a remarkable day in Ketchikan. Seven cruise ships are expected to bring 13,226 passengers to the First City, beginning at 6 a.m. and ending at 8 p.m. That's more than 2,000 above the highest cruise passenger day a year ago.

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Margaret Mae Bolton, 83, died April 15, 2017, in Ketchikan.
Courtney Marie Marshall, 36, died April 11, 2017, in Seattle.
Marcario Rado, 58, died April 10, 2017, in Ketchikan.
4/3/2013
It's sprung ...

The mood is spreading all over town.

The longer days and higher temperatures are prompting thoughts of spring, particularly when the sun begins to appear pretty often.

With these thoughts comes the desire, if not the enthusiasm, to clean up and get ready for a new business season or just to dust off winter and prepare for a playful spring.

Downtown, where the tourists will be disembarking from cruise ships by month's end, businesses are sprucing up inside and outside of their buildings. Some remodeling projects carried on through the winter; others began in recent weeks. The exterior of more than one building is being replaced or washed down. Clean windows are on the to-do list of at least one enterprise.

As the cruise season approaches, more and more businesses will re-open their doors and begin to stock shelves for the tourist trade. It won't be long before the tourists are filling the streets, with walking tour maps and shopping bags in hand.

Meanwhile, when it comes to play, avid boaters filled up at least one parking lot next to a launch site over the weekend. The first fruits of their labor already are showing up in freezers and on the dinner table.

Hikers are hitting the trails, fur is flying off the dogs, raindrops are landing softly and the geese are passing by on their annual flight north.

The signs of spring are here; enjoy!