The Kingston Port District was established in 1919 to provide a locally-owned ferry docking facility for service by the "Mosquito Fleet". The Port of Kingston is one of 12 Port districts in Kitsap County. The Port is a special purpose district governed by a three directly elected commissioners. The Mosquito Fleet was a ferry system that provided service the local area via the Kingston Port District's docking facilities until 1951, when Washington State established the current state ferry system.
The current marina facilities at the Port were constructed in the late 1960's, following a needs and economic evaluation, permitting, and design process that began in 1957. Initial development involved dredging sediment from the basin and placement of the dredged sediment in what is now Mike Wallace Park, a Port parking area, and the Ferry's holding area. The breakwater was constructed in 1966 by the US Army Corps of Engineers, and the dredging to create the basin behind the breakwater was completed in 1967. Concurrently, piers, a fuel dock, bathrooms, and a boat launching hoist were planned and constructed. The marina was designed to meet the needs of that time, which were identified to be permanent moorage for pleasure and commercial fishing boats, local economic development, and "unique opportunities at Kingston".
In 1967, the Port district signed a 20 year lease with a private marina operator (Mr. Richard Hill); under the lease, the Port provided the existing facilities and Mr. Hill operated the marina.
In October 1985, Mr. Hill retired and the Port purchased the remainder of the lease and the property improvements that he had constructed. The Port opted to provide marina services in the immediate region, the Port opted not to immediately lease the marina to a new private operator, but to pursue service improvements through its own public operation of the marina. The need to guide future management of other conventional Port facilities, led to the preparation of the first Master Plan in 1985.
The Port of Kingston has evolved from a boat yard with a repair facility and a hoist to a picturesque park like setting. This transformation provided more parking and recreation facilities by removing the boat yard and repair facility and creating Mike Wallace Park. The boat hoist was replaced with a two lane boat launch facility.
Kingston, on the shore of Appletree Cove, is a 30-minute ferry ride from Edmonds. Once a lumber town in the early 1850's, and known as the "Little City by the Sea", Kingston is the northern gateway to the Kitsap Peninsula and Olympic National Park & Forest. Founded in 1853 by Benjamin Bannister, the father of Kingston, the Community was originally known as Apple Tree Cove. Now is the social and economic center of the north end of the Peninsula, Kingston features its own community center, theater group and shopping district. You can stroll through the tiny town and enjoy the waterfront ambiance, cozy cafes and quaint shops.
For access to a history link with more information on the Port of Kingston you can go to http://historylink.org/index.cfm?DisplayPage=output.cfm&file_id=9427