Here’s to the resiliency of our industry

It’s hard to believe, but it’s here. After talking about it for the last 12 months, we’re about to see industry history made with the Thursday opening of the new Progressive Miami International Boat Show at the new Miami Marine Stadium Park & Basin. No boat show of this size and scope has ever been […]

Moonshine? Ethanol is just a waste

A new campaign promoting more ethanol (should be called moonshine), as well as the industry’s all-important American Boating Congress, are notable today. “I’m sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails,” Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said to Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton. (I suspect that subject isn’t going away). But today I can say […]

Support new status for manatees

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced plans to “downlist” the West Indian manatee from endangered to a less-serious status of threatened and the Southwest Florida Marine Industries Association is calling on its members — and all boating interests — to support this action in public comments now. The proposed reclassification is the result of […]

Seattle show rides a wave of good sales news

The largest boat show on the West Coast is set to open Friday for its nine-day run in Seattle amid rosy reports that 2015 was an excellent year for boat sales in Washington. The dual-site Seattle Boat Show is held in the Centurylink Field Event Center and afloat at Chandlers Cove on South Lake Union. […]

Fight is on to keep Ohio waterway council

A proposal to eliminate the Ohio Waterway Safety Council is running into a storm of objections, while the industry’s political action committee BoatPAC unveiled a streamlined new website. Boaters and the marine industry in Ohio were taken by surprise recently to learn the Ohio Department of Natural Resources had proposed eliminating the Waterway Safety Council. […]

Senator addresses Lake Erie trade group

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, told nearly 100 attendees at the annual meeting of the Lake Erie Marine Trades Association that significant progress was made in 2015 on issues that impact the marine industry, particularly on the Great Lakes and Lake Erie. Citing the huge economic impact of recreational boating in Ohio, Portman noted “recent victories” […]

Early winter shows are setting a solid pace

Oil industry woes, losing a key Saturday date and an arctic blast packing sub-zero wind chills couldn’t stop boat shows in Houston, Cleveland, Chicago and Atlanta from delivering for their exhibitors. The traditional 10-day Houston Boat Show didn’t open on its first Saturday because of NFL playoff football in the adjacent stadium. Still, the show […]

Be comfortable being uncomfortable

National Marine Manufacturers Association president Thom Dammrich might be the most in-demand speaker in the marine industry today. His position allows him a comprehensive view of the business. But off the platform, away from citing marketing data and sales projections, a conversation with him becomes even more thought-provoking. A case in point is his sharing […]

Houston show tries a unique attendance grab

Question: What is a boat show manager’s worst nightmare? Answer: Failure to open on the biggest day for attendance. That never happens, does it? Yup. The website for the Houston Boat Show read: CONGRATULATIONS TO THE HOUSTON TEXANS! THE SHOW WILL BE CLOSED SATURDAY, JANUARY 9 FOR THE PLAYOFF GAME. PLEASE VISIT US ANOTHER DAY. […]

What’s the best way to position a deal?

It’s showtime as the New York Boat Show opened Wednesday and the show in Houston opens Friday. They’re starting off the industry’s critical winter boat show season with anticipation of gains in attendance and continued increases in sales. Between now and Easter, hundreds of dealers across the nation will show off their hottest models in […]

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