Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show Review: Ketchikan Excursion

Ketchikan’s Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show features world-champion athletes performing incredible feats of skill and strength. Book the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show for a touristy good time perfect for entertaining guests of all ages.

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Great Alaskan Lumberjack Experience

Mickey decor and welcome Disney Cruise Line banners add extra flair during the Exclusive Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show excursion

Before The Show

When on your Disney Alaska cruise you’ll get information on what time and where to check in for each excursion. For the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show simply arrive at the arena and line up outside before the show.

On our Ketchikan port day it was pouring rain. Rather than make us wait outside, the staff opened a covered holding area for us to wait.

Check in with staff, then enter and take a seat anywhere you like on the bleachers surrounding the lumberjack sports arena. The show runs rain or shine, but most of the bleachers are under cover keeping guests dry, but rain adds another layer of challenge for the lumberjacks.

While waiting for the show kids are encouraged to participate in a carnival style game. They use a large slingshot to heave items into a Mickey adorned target across some water. If they “win”, the kids come back with a souvenir postcard.

Two teams, one representing the United States and one representing Canada, compete in several different events. Each side of the stands is assigned a team causing some good-natured rivalry.

During The Show

A lumberjack in a red and black checkered shirt uses a long saw to quickly carve through a log

A charming host introduces each athlete, tells tall tales about Ketchikan history, and also explains each event before the competition begins.

Watch lumberjacks swiftly climb high on tree trunks and use sharp axes to demonstrate cutting techniques while battling to complete the event first. The impressive displays of strength and agility of these unique athletes is a lot of fun for all ages.

Pro tip: No video taping is allowed during the show. Instead, immerse yourself watching the no holds-barred competition.

US and Canadian flags planted in front of the team’s area keep track of the score. Whoever gets the most flags wins the title at the end of the show.

A mischievous character standing on a roof looks down on the competition before "stealing" from the contestants

Throwing a wrench into the whole event is a naughty lumberjack. He sneakily appears out of nowhere and steals the wood “cookies”. These cookies are a circular piece of wood leftover from sawing logs that the teams also use to keep score. 

Shout loudly and warn the lumberjacks when a cookie is being stolen. After several stolen wood cookies, and lots of audience participation, the trouble maker was caught after a wild chase.

The mischievous lumberjack is caught by the competitors during the Great American Lumberjack Show

The end of the show features a crowd pleasing display of boom running and log rolling. Boom rolling is wild activity where lumberjacks gracefully run across logs linked together in the water without falling in. 

Log rolling is exactly what it sounds like. Two lumberjacks try to stay upright on a free floating log in the water all the while speeding up the spin or kicking water at their competitor to get them to fall off. This dramatic crowd pleasing event is an awesome way to end the show. 

Two lumberjacks run atop a floating log trying to distract one another and win the competition

After The Show

Take pictures with the world-champion athletes and leave a tip for these hard working lumberjacks. While waiting in line we saw several Bald Eagles, which although typical for much of Alaska was still breathtaking for us.

A group of lumberjacks and the host pose for photos under a large Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show sign

What Makes The Disney Cruise Exclusive Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show Special?

The Disney Exclusive Great Alaskan Lumberjack show has a few touches that make it special.

Look for hidden Mickey’s in the arena and the colorful stories are toned down to make them perfect for a family-friendly event. Based on the story modifications I think a couple tales would have left some parents squirming.

This exclusive show can be a standalone excursion or paired with axe throwing, a crab feast, or even a visit to Saxman village depending on your preferences.

Where Is The Lumberjack Show?

Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show is a short walk from the cruise ship docks at 420 Spruce Mill Way in Ketchikan. We explored most of Ketchikan on our own, ate lunch onboard Disney Wonder, and still easily made it back for our show without tons of walking.

Great American Lumberjack Show Review

A lumberjack is perched on a small beam attached to a tree stump where he must balance while quickly chopping wood

Some of our group was skeptical when I suggested booking this Disney Alaska cruise excursion. Despite their initial reservations, everyone, which included preschool, tweens, teens, and adults, had a great time.

The athletes have impressive resumes with most competing at college or national lumberjack events prior to joining the show. Although staged and geared toward tourists, the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show was a highlight of our stop in Ketchikan.

Looking for a family-friendly Ketchikan Disney Alaskan cruise excursion? The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show is fun for everyone!