The 680-foot laker John J. Boland came to Fraser Shipyards in Superior Friday, making it the first vessel to arrive in the Twin Ports for winter layup this season.

Vessels will continue to arrive for winter layup and maintenance until mid-January, said Jayson Hron, director of communications and marketing with the Duluth Seaway Port Authority.

"It's the time of year when maintenance can be done on the ships," Hron said. "That will be one of multiple ships that will be at Fraser Shipyards. The shipping company can determine at what time it makes the most sense to bring a ship in for the winter."

Last year, six vessels were laid up in the Twin Ports for the winter season, four of which were at Fraser. Currently, three other ships are still scheduled to come in for the winter, Hron said, though more could still be added to that list.

While the Montreal-Lake Ontario section of the St. Lawrence Seaway will close on Dec. 31, shipping will continue in the lower Great Lakes until the Soo Locks close Jan. 15.