MDCE 2012: Discover Boating joins with marina initiative


Welcome to the Water is coming to National Marina Day.

Discover Boating is joining the initiative, launched years ago by the Association of Marina Industries, that had primarily been a celebration of marinas, Discover Boating vice president of marketing Carl Blackwell said at the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, which wraps up today in Orlando, Fla.

“Last year we started to work with them on teaming up Welcome to the Water with them to get a little more buzz and make it a little more consumer-focused,” Blackwell said. “The marina industry has embraced this, and they’re the gateway to the water for us in many cases.”

The next National Marina Day will be June 8, 2013.

“I think we’ve all talked about this at one point, but now we want to start to create some news, celebrating life on the water,” Blackwell said.

The groups hope that each marina will offer something a little bit different, Blackwell said.

“Some marinas may offer boat rides, others might offer hands-on training and others could do trailering seminars,” he said. “We’re working with many stakeholders to encourage participation.”

Discover Boating is also making an effort to get more reporters from the national media out on the water, Blackwell said at a Volvo Penta-sponsored lunch on Tuesday.

Some might have had “a little more harrowing” experience than they bargained for when they took rides at the America’s Cup World Series race in San Francisco last summer, Blackwell told the room of roughly 500 attendees.

The group is also reaching out to more celebrities for endorsements in commercials, as well as “mommy bloggers,” asking them to write about an experience on the water.

“More often than not they talk about remembering boating when they were kids and wanting their kids to get that experience, too,” Blackwell said.

“We’ve got to get people on that boat to get them in a boat,” Blackwell said.

— Reagan Haynes


Besenzoni - for over 50 years ambassador of made in Italy in the world - designs and produces accessories for pleasure and commercial boating characterized by simple and functional design

Besenzoni constantly assists its customers in 90 countries with 187 representative points and a direct assistance network consisting of 164 operating units around the world coordinated by the headquarters.

Sea Tow Saves Cold-Stunned Turtles

Its Corpus Christi outfit is rescuing turtles that were affected by the deep freeze in Texas.

Southern Marinas Sells Portfolio

The group had made six acquisitions last year and had a total of 12 properties under its umbrella.

2020 Neptune Award Winners Named

The annual marketing awards drew 129 entries in 20 categories.

‘A Great Start to 2021’

An onslaught of new and returning customers kept dealers busy in what is typically a slower time of year.

Nautique Names VP of Sales

Rick Skinner joins the Correct Craft subsidiary after 30-plus years with water-sports equipment manufacturer HO Sports.

MarineMax Expands Territories for Cruisers, MJM

The dealership will offer the brands at several of its locations, including Boston, Baltimore, Jacksonville and Charleston.