Bill Greenlaw says there's still plenty of work to be done on the ship before it can be put into the water, including installing the rudder.
Greenlaw says crews completed the transfer of the Bluenose II onto a ramp Thursday that will allow it to enter the water.
A massive dome that had covered the vessel during its $17-million restoration on the Lunenburg waterfront was removed last week.
The provincial government has said that the vessel is expected to be ready for public sailing next summer.
The Bluenose II, launched in 1963, is a replica of the original Bluenose, a Grand Banks fishing schooner that won worldwide acclaim for its graceful lines and flat-out speed.
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