Some people can't get enough of river living. If you're one of those people, right now there is a great opportunity for you!

This morning we talked with Mike Blaske, General Manager for Illinois Marine Towing.

They're a boat and barge company based out of Lemont, Illinois. They're moving all boat commodities up and down the Illinois River from downtown Chicago, all the way down to Cairo, Illinois.

They currently employ over 200 people and if you're looking to work outdoors, this is your gig! It's a 24/7 business so they're constantly on the move.

Today and tomorrow they're hosting a hiring event in Dubuque inside the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium in the River's Edge Cafe! (Tomorrow it will start at 10am again (5/26).) If you've ever wondered what it would be like to work as a deckhand, now's your chance!

You'll live on one of the boats or in their shoreside facility. Mike said a typical day starts at 6am with daily rounds on the boats, checking the engine room and making sure the Captain has everything he or she needs for the day.

You'll be involved in moving barges around spotting various docks. Sometimes you'll work with individual barges, other times you'll be 'wiring' fifteen barges together by rigging them.

But you don't know how to do that? No problem... Illinois Marine Towing features a lot of on the job training. Mike says you'll learn very quickly.

Pay is competitive. Employees start at $150 a day, but that quickly accelerates up to $640 a day within a few years time. Scheduling for a line-haul boats you work 21 days on and then 21 days off (so you basically have 6 months of the year off)! There's full health insurance including health, vision and dental. There's a 401k with a 6% company match.

Safety is a big part of the operation. They use all necessary PPE protective equipment.

New employees do have a physical prior to starting and you should be able to lift up to 75 pounds.

(I jokingly asked if you get a chance to fish from the boat and Mike said from time to time there is an opportunity to fish... so you better have your fishing license ready!)

For more information you can visit the Illinois Marine Towing WEBSITE, or learn more on their Facebook page.

~Chris Farber

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