Vol. 2 Issue 5

The Official Newsletter of Port Canaveral

Welcome to Waypoint+

Welcome to Volume 2 Issue 5 of Waypoint+ A Port Canaveral Newsletter! Our goal is to keep you informed of the latest news at the Port and stay connected with our extended community.

Canaveral Port Authority serves the region, our customers, and constituencies by facilitating domestic and international maritime commerce, creating positive regional economic impact while maintaining transparency, effective planning and sound fiscal management practices. As always, we welcome your comments, questions and concerns.

Port Canaveral CEO Capt. John Murray

Message from the CEO

As Port Canaveral’s Fiscal Year 2022 comes to a close, indications are we will finish the year with strong numbers across all business units. Looking ahead to FY ’23, our projections are pretty exciting too, as we anticipate new and growing business opportunities for our cruise and cargo segments, and a return to robust investment in capital projects at our Port.
Port Canaveral’s business success this past year was hard earned, especially as we continued to work our way back from the economic difficulties of a global pandemic. But, thanks to strong business partnerships and our continuous commitment to excellence, Port Canaveral’s horizon is looking bright.

Our cruise partners continue to invest in our Port by committing some of their newest and biggest ships to homeport here with larger passenger capacities and expanded sailings. This month, we welcomed back the MSC Meraviglia for the winter sailing season. In November, we will welcome home the world’s biggest cruise ship, the Royal Caribbean Wonder of the Seas, as well as Royal Caribbean’s Jewel of the Seas. In early December, Port Canaveral will become the new home for the newest cruise ship in Norwegian Cruise Line’s fleet, the Norwegian Prima.

Our cargo partners have been busy as well, with first time vessel calls offloading a range of commodities including imported canned vegetables, large volumes of transportation fuels and heavy project cargo space components. In fact, the M/V Sea Sapphire, at nearly 1,000 feet long was the largest tanker vessel to ever call at Port Canaveral. She arrived earlier this month to discharge 245,000 barrels – over 10 million gallons – of jet fuel at Seaport Canaveral. 
Port Canaveral is proud to be a driving economic engine for the greater Central Florida region and the State of Florida overall. On November 9th, I will deliver the annual “State of the Port” address with more details on how we finished this past year, and offer some perspective for what lies ahead in the coming months. I hope you’ll tune in to watch the event, live streamed from Cruise Terminal 3.



Captain John W. Murray
Port Director and CEO

Commission Chairman Jerry Allendar

Message from the Chairman


Reflecting on the end of this fiscal year, I’m proud to say we have continued to generate success at Port Canaveral.
The continuously growing number of cruise passengers that sail from our Port week after week shows the strength and popularity our Port has among cruise guests.
The growing volume of cargo through our Port underscores the continuing role our Port plays in the economic diversity and prosperity of the Space Coast and Central Florida regions.
With all aspects of Port Canaveral finishing the year with financial stability and a healthy growth outlook, I would like to thank all of our Port partners for their commitment to our Port, and I extend my sincere appreciation to our Port community for its continued support of our mission.

The next Canaveral Port Authority Commissioners Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 26th, at 9 a.m. The Commission meeting will be held at the Maritime Center and will also be available for live stream viewing on the Port Canaveral website or on the Port Canaveral Facebook page.


Jerry Allender
Canaveral Port Authority

Click to Watch

Around the Port

Photo: Canaveral Port Authority officials Micah Loyd, Port Commissioner; Mike Poole, CFO; and Bill Crowe, V.P. Engineering, Construction and Facilities, joined with representatives of Liebherr Group for a contract signing ceremony at Liebherr’s corporate headquarters in Rostock, Germany

Port Canaveral Signs Agreement to Acquire Second Mobile Harbor Crane


Port Canaveral has signed an agreement with the Liebherr Group to acquire another mobile harbor crane from the company to support the Port’s growing cargo operations. The 320-foot-tall Liebherr LMH 600 is the second mobile harbor crane to be deployed at Port Canaveral and is part of a new mobile harbor crane product line recently launched by Liebherr. The Port’s first, a Liebherr LMH 600, was entered into service in early 2019.

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Port Canaveral Hosts the 2022 FCCA Platinum Members Cruise

Port Canaveral was honored to be the host port for the 2022 Florida Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Platinum Members Cruise. This year, the event was held aboard the MSC Divina which sailed a four-night itinerary from Port Canaveral September 11-15th. This annual event brings together cruise line executives, as well as representatives from various cruise ports throughout the U.S. and the Caribbean.

“The partnerships of groups like FCCA are critical to the North American cruise industry and key to the success for U.S. homeports, such as Port Canaveral. The relationships cruise lines have with destination ports in the Caribbean generate economic prosperity for the region, and are essential to ensuring high quality guest experiences,” said Dave German, Canaveral Port Authority’s Vice President of Cruise Business Development. The FCCA Platinum Cruise is an engaging way to show off Port Canaveral to all our cruise industry partners.

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CEO Capt. John Murray Welcomes U.S. Coast Guard to NCB Meeting

The National Cargo Bureau (NCB) was founded 70 years ago to assist the Coast Guard with its responsibilities and has had a close relationship to protect and administer the safety of life at sea. In addition to his title as CEO of Port Canaveral, Capt. John Murray is also the Chairman of the NCB.

At their recent meeting, Capt. Murray, along with Ian Lennard, President of NCB, welcomed Admiral Linda L. Fagan, the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard to the annual NCB meeting in Washington D.C. The invitation to Commandant Fagan further strengthens the partnership between NCB and the Coast Guard. 

Top Photo L-R: Capt. John Murray, CEO Port Canaveral; Admiral Linda L. Fagan, Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard; Ian Lennard, President of NCB

MSC Seashore to Homeport at Port Canaveral for 2023 Winter Sailing Season


MSC Cruises has announced it will homeport one of its largest and most advanced cruise ships to Port Canaveral in 2023, offering new opportunities for guests to experience the cruise line’s latest vision for enhanced Caribbean cruising. The MSC Seashore will sail from Port Canaveral beginning with the Winter 2023-2024 season as part of a larger expansion featuring a record five ships sailing from U.S. ports.


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2022 Breakbulk Americas

In September, Port Canaveral’s cargo team attended one of the industry’s most important events for the cargo and breakbulk industry. The annual convention in Houston is the largest trade event, and was a great opportunity for the team to network, foster existing industry relationships and discover current operation trends in the cargo business industry, and  continue to develop new and future business opportunities for Port Canaveral.

+More info

Port Canaveral Welcomes Back the MSC Meraviglia

Port Canaveral extends a big “welcome back” to the MSC Meraviglia as she returns to her home at Port Canaveral for the 2022-2023 winter sailing season.

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Keeping the Fuel Flowing to Central Florida Following Hurricane Ian


After a hurricane, keeping the fuel flowing is the #1 priority at Port Canaveral. Our partner, Seaport Canaveral, was busy keeping Central Florida’s tanks full before, during and after Hurricane Ian. A big thanks to Seaport Canaveral and General Manager David Smith and his entire team for working tirelessly to keep the engines running.


Brevard County Students at the HELM

This month a group of students from Rockledge High School’s HELM program (Helping Educate Leaders in Maritime) toured Port Canaveral for a firsthand look at the inner workings of the maritime industry. For two days the students learned about Port safety and logistics from boat operators with Brevard County Sheriff’s Office, Canaveral Fire Rescue, and Canaveral Pilots.

The students also toured the ongoing North Cargo Berth 3 rehabilitation project, watched cargo operations in action, went aboard various vessels and even caught a close viewing of the SpaceX Crew 5 launch from the Port. This unique high school HELM program aims to educate future leaders in the maritime industry.


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2022 State of the Port


Join us online as Port Canaveral’s CEO Capt. John Murray delivers the 2022 State of the Port address, to be broadcasted live from Cruise Terminal 3 on Wednesday November 9 at 10:30am. This annual presentation provides Port Canaveral's stakeholders and community an inside look at the growth throughout the past fiscal year. The address also includes a forecast of what is on the horizon - opportunities for new business, growth plans with our partners, stakeholders and planned capital projects. Join this live streamed event Wednesday, November 9th at 10am by clicking below.

+Stream Live

Looking Back

November 4, 2013 - Rodney Thompson (seated) with family and close friends at the Port's 60th anniversary celebration at Exploration Tower during which he was recognized as a Port pioneer and honored for his many contributions.

October 21, 2016


On this day 6 years ago, the Port community was saddened by the loss of rock shrimp industry pioneer, fisherman, and longtime Titusville resident Rodney Thompson, who died on October 21, 2016. Rodney’s family moved to Florida before the Civil War and in the 1890’s moved to Merritt Island. Rodney was born on March 23, 1930 in Titusville, FL. Rodney and his family have an extensive history with Port Canaveral that spans every aspect of the fishing industry from owning bait shops, commercial fishing boat manufacturers, and as owner/operator of seafood restaurants and markets.

Rodney began his career when he and his father, Herbert, built a bait house and operated the Titusville Pier after the old wooden Walker Bridge was replaced by a concrete span in 1949. During his long career, he founded T-Craft Boats, Thompson Trawlers, Offshore 30, Thompson Industries, Sand Point Inn, Pelican Point Inn, Ponce Seafood, Dixie Crossroads Seafood Restaurant, Cape Canaveral Shrimp Company and Wild Ocean Seafood Market. He raced boats in the early 1960’s for Carl Kiekhaefer, the founder of Mercury Marine, and built the world’s first fiberglass commercial shrimp boat.

Rodney’s claim to fame was the rock shrimp industry. Prior to getting involved with Rock Shrimp, they were considered a trash item because their shell was so hard, no one was interested in buying them. Rodney and his family came up with the idea to split them like a small lobster and drizzle them with a little butter. And with that, a whole new industry was born! Rodney went on to develop the first splitter able to process the hard-shelled shrimp and is the basis of the machines still used today. Because of this, the Port Canaveral/Titusville area is known as the Rock Shrimp Capitol of the World. With all of this, Rodney played an instrumental role in the Port’s commercial fishing industry. His legacy lives on today at Port Canaveral with Wild Ocean Seafood Market operated by his daughter, Sherri McCoy and Dixie Crossroads Seafood Restaurant in Titusville operated by his daughter Laurilee Thompson.

Thank You for Reading!

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