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Deal reached on New York Boat Show dates

The Progressive Insurance New York Boat Show agreed to go back to its original dates in 2016 as part of a deal with other stakeholders that were incensed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to assign the show more favorable dates from 2015 to 2019.

The deal that was hammered out last week involves about 20 trade shows that take place from January through March, including the New York International Gift Fair and the National Retail Federation Show, according to Crain’s New York Business. Many of the shows agreed to reduce their set-up and breakdown time or to start on a Saturday instead of a Sunday, Alan Steele, chief executive of the Jacob K. Javits Center, told the paper.

The biggest sticking point in the negotiations was over the dates in 2016. The boat show agreed to return to its former time slot from Jan. 6 to Jan. 10 for that one year.

In August, Cuomo said he would assign the show more favorable dates and add a fall show to help boost the marine industry in light of the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy. The announcement sparked controversy among the trade group Friends of Javits.

National Marine Manufacturers Association regional show manager Jon Pritko told Trade Only Today in August that the criticism was misplaced. “We didn’t get new dates. We’re just going back to our original dates,” Pritko said. “We were moved to less desirable dates and attendance dropped. They didn’t work.”

For about a decade, the boat show has been held in late December and early January. Previously it had taken place in mid-January, but it was bumped from its time slot by the National Retail Federation, which brought in more out-of-towners. As a result, the boat show's attendance declined as the holidays overshadowed it.

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