The 2010 Mid-America Boat & Fishing Show opened to a better-than-expected crowd Jan. 15 at the I-X Center in Cleveland, with attendance down slightly from last year's event, organizers said.
Overall, attendance declined 5 percent, compared to last year's 47,200 attendees, however, many boats were sold and the expanded pre-owned pavilion proved to be a success for exhibitors, according to organizers. The show is produced by the Lake Erie Marine Trades Association.
"For the smaller-than-usual amount of space taken by dealers, there sure seemed to be a lot of sales," said show manager Ken Alvey, in a statement. "Most everyone I've talked to had sold at least a couple boats."
One change this year was a modification of the show name to highlight the abundance of fishing boat dealers in the region. Many members of the angling community responded positively and helped fill the Angler's Alley booths with tackle sellers, charter captains, fishing clubs, Division of Wildlife officers and speakers for every day of the week.
All visitors who brought four cans of food Jan. 19 for the Cleveland Foodbank were allowed into the show for free. Another promotion on Jan. 21 dropped the price of admission to $5 after 5 p.m. Live entertainment was provided by Put-in-Bay regulars Alex Bevan, Mike "Mad Dog" Adams and Ray Fogg.
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Duncan McIntosh Co., producer of the Newport Boat Show and Lido Yacht Expo, recently signed a new lease with Vornado Realty Trust extending the boat show agreement through 2014.
New York-based Vornado Realty Trust purchased Lido Marina Village, in Newport Beach, Calif., in early 2009.
"We're excited about our relationship with the new owners and the commitment they're making to refurbishing and upgrading the entire facility," said Duncan McIntosh, in a statement.
McIntosh has produced the Newport show since 1973 and the yacht expo since 1978.
The Newport Boat Show is set for April 15-18 and the Lido yacht Expo will take place Sept. 23-26.