Dolly Steamboat Boasts Exceptional Employees

By Lynette Carrington

Dolly Steamboat Boasts Exceptional Employees

Dolly Steamboat Boasts Exceptional Employees Providing a One-of-a-Kind Experience

For decades, Dolly Steamboat has been the gem on Canyon Lake, taking guests out on the water and in and out amongst the soaring canyon walls. It takes a wonderful group of employees to ensure that guests have a fun and exciting experience, and to ensure that the boat is always in ship shape!

Jan Johnson is currently the office manager and has held many positions with the company over the years. Johnson explains, “I started out as a crew member, moved on to captain, done everything from painting to engine maintenance, and now work in the office. I manage the cruise schedule, make reservations, pay bills, and most of the general paperwork to keep the boat operational. For each job, I have worked directly with the public and I love to hear how a boat ride made their day!”

Johnson has always loved Canyon Lake. Even when she was young, she would go boating with her grandma in the summer, where she would see the Dolly Steamboat plying through the waters. She says, “I never had the opportunity to go on the Dolly until much later. While working at a different location, I met Roger, the owner of the Dolly at the time. He invited me and a group of friends out to ride the boat. A few years later, a co-worker of mine told me about this job she had, working on the Dolly Steamboat, and how she had just quit. So, I took the opportunity, knowing they were looking for help, and applied for the position. In February, I will be celebrating 20 years here.”

The Dolly Steamboat Experience

Working aboard the Dolly Steamboat lends itself to some very beautiful moments. “One of the most memorable times on the boat was during a dinner cruise,” Johnson says. “The lake was calm and looked like glass. Stars were out in full force. We rounded a bend in the river just as the harvest moon came up over the cliffs. That alone was beautiful, but then a bighorn sheep stepped up and were silhouetted against the moon. It was gorgeous.”

The Steamboat Dolly may be a small company, but it touches many lives. “The owners, Jeff and Cindi,
are truly admirable people, who care about their staff and their customers,” explains Johnson. “They inspire those around them to be better. They both strive to make the Dolly a place that people want to visit, and a work environment that’s fun and genuine. The major bonus is Canyon Lake. It is incredibly beautiful out there and I love showing off a part of Arizona that few know about.”

Johnson encourages all to climb aboard and experience Canyon Lake in a unique way. She finishes by saying, “If you have been thinking about taking a cruise, do it! It's a great way to spend a few hours and the cost is pretty affordable.”

Take a Cruise

A cruise aboard Dolly steamboat is a trip unlike any other. The majestic sternwheeler takes guests around Canyon Lake and into the soaring canyons to show off the beauty, vistas and unique wildlife surrounding one of our most beautiful lakes! Now is a great time to take advantage of this special offer, especially since January marks the start of Dolly Steamboat’s busy season and there will be much activity! Call now to take advantage of this wonderful holiday special.

The 2 and 1/2 hour Twilight Dinner Cruise includes a fantastic buffet dinner, complete with chef’s choice of dessert. An airline style bar is available to purchase cocktails, wine and beer. Catering is provided by Brown Brothers Catering of Arizona and the menu includes two entrees - beef and chicken. The food alone continually receives rave reviews! Watch the sun sink behind the cliffs and capture the desert beauty as the moon rises and the stars reveal themselves.

Once a month, there is a very special 2 ½ hour Astronomy Cruise (including dinner) with “Dr. Sky” on board. Steve Kates, aka “Dr. Sky,” gives a narration about the galaxy of stars and will interpret the constellations in a fun and engaging way. He uses a blue laser beam to point out various stars and constellations.

Private charters are also available during the week and on the weekends, and catering may also be arranged. For additional information about the Dolly Steamboat, cruise schedule and a photo gallery, there is a convenient online reservation site with directions to Canyon Lake Marina. Visit for additional information, or to arrange private charters or corporate events, please call (480) 827-9144.