For the first time, dock space for on-the-water exhibits and demonstrations will be part of the International BoatBuilders' Exhibition & Conference, which will be held Sept. 29-Oct. 2 at the Tampa (Fla.) Convention Center.
“One of the reasons we selected the Tampa Convention Center was the easy access to the water,” IBEX show director Anne Dunbar told Trade Only Today. “To take advantage of our waterfront location, participants in at least two of our seminars will leave their classroom and go outside to learn live aboard the boats as part of their session.”
Fifteen manufacturers secured slips for their boats, Dunbar said. Those manufacturers are listed below.
Honda Marine will showcase its new iST (Intelligent Shift and Throttle) system on two boats at IBEX — a Yellowfin with triple Honda BF250s and a 23-foot Everglades with a single BF250 and dual helm stations, Honda Marine senior manager Mark DiPietro told Trade Only Today.
“We fully intend to utilize this opportunity to showcase products at IBEX,” DiPietro said. “This is going to make it a much more valuable venue, in my mind. It’s a business-to-business show, and that’s not going to change, of course, but it gives you a whole extra dimension in what you can bring and show.”
Eckerd College Search and Rescue will perform a live demonstration of some of the techniques this volunteer non-profit group of students uses. Using specially equipped vessels, the team will perform in-water rescue practices, firefighting, righting an overturned vessel and dewatering a sinking vessel.
EC-SAR is a student development program that offers maritime assistance to the Tampa Bay boating community, providing nearly 600 rescues each year. These rescues often involve interagency cooperation and collaboration with the Coast Guard, 911 and other local agencies.
“We will have three rescue boats involved in our maneuvers,” Ryan Dilkey, coordinator of EC-SAR, based in St. Petersburg, Fla., told Trade Only Today. “These boats are used on a daily basis to do their job.”
Dilkey aims to “introduce our existence — or the fact that we’ve been in existence for 43 years, serving the boaters of our area,” he said. “It is a unique program — the only one of its kind in the nation. This opportunity is going to give us a prime time and location to show [ourselves to] a targeted audience that not only builds the equipment we use, but also impacts the people we assist.”
Dilkey’s seminar will identify the key causes of some boating accidents. “If these problems [that lead to accidents] can be identified, then maybe equipment and boats can be somehow tweaked in the manufacturer design and build process,” said Dilkey.
The group will demonstrate using a 26-foot Century, a 23-foot Century, a 19-foot Norsafe Rescue Boat and a drill boat.
The following IBEX exhibitors will be at the in-water show portion of the show:
• JL Audio
• Eckerd College
• Nauticus Inc.
• Ocean LED
• UFlex USA
• JL Marine Systems
• Iris Innovation USA
• Volvo Penta
• Elco Motor Yachts
• SeaStar Solutions
• Mercury Marine