Lummi Island ferry evokes Seahawks pride with new colors

Seahawks fever is so intense for fans of the Super Bowl champions that it makes them see team spirit whether it’s there or not.

Like on the Whatcom Chief, the ferry from Gooseberry Point to Lummi Island, which just came out of dry dock with a fresh coat of paint — blue, with green and gray trim.

Purser Gary Poole was aboard the Chief on Thursday, Sept. 18, the vessel’s second day in service after two weeks in dry dock. He told a reporter over the phone from the pilot house — emblazoned with a new blue, green and gray stripe — that any resemblance to a Seattle Seahawks theme was coincidental.

“But we got lots of good comments on it in the shipyard,” Poole said.

He wasn’t sure it would be politically acceptable for a government-run ferry to make such a blatant statement of support for an organization, even one as popular around here as Seattle’s professional football team.

“The colors were chosen because people like the way they look,” Poole said. “It wasn’t representing the Seahawks. It was a nice color scheme.”

Robert Ney, the county Public Works Department’s special programs manager, let the Chief’s new paint job remain an open question. He wasn’t about to discourage anyone from seeing Seahawks colors.

Besides, would it really be a coincidence if a Whatcom County ferry and the Pacific Northwest’s football team had some colors in common? When Nike introduced the Seahawks’ new uniform in 2012, the company said the blue represented “ocean water,” and the new color “action green” reflected “the ubiquitous trees, ferns and moss literally covering the Pacific Northwest landscape.”

“It should be noted the accent colors selected for the Chief are historical county colors, green and blue,” Ney said. “It may or may not be coincidental that the two colors selected are similar to the Seahawks colors. However, if it is coincidental, it may also show the community support for the Seahawks.”

“Last year I believe the Chief was black and red,” Ney said, “which could have been associated with Lummi Nation colors, or even the Atlanta Falcons.”