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Newport spring show shelved for 2010

Newport Harbor Corp. will suspend the Newport (R.I.) Spring Boat Show this year to focus on the launch of a superyacht show in summer 2011.

"We really couldn't focus our energies on both. It's really not a bad time to suspend it. Things are looking a little bit better in the boating industry, but to give it a year off didn't seem like a bad idea at this time," show manager Nancy Piffard told Soundings Trade Only.

Since it takes place on the company's site there's no need to rent space, which makes it easier to take a year off, she said.

Piffard said she expected the show would be back in a year.

While planning for the superyacht show is still in the early stages, Stuart Kiely, director of marketing, said he expects such an event would be well received.

"Newport as a town really would be a good host for an event like this," he told Soundings Trade Only. "We think that being situated between D.C. and Boston, and having a show in season in Newport, that we can put enough value into this event ... and that there's enough wealth in this region that we can put together enough elements of the show to make it a worthwhile destination."

Kiely said he expects the event would be more than a boat show - it would also include elements such as luxury aircraft and automobiles, fine art, food and wine.

There's nothing like it in the Northeast, he added.

Organizers still plans to hold the 40th annual Newport International Boat Show Sept.16-19, and the Providence Boat Show, which runs Feb 3-6, 2011.

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