Organizers pleased with newly combined show


Despite a slight drop in attendance, the 2009 Strictly Sail Pacific & Powerboat Expo was deemed a success, with exhibitors reporting quality traffic and strong sales.

The newly combined show brought together more than 250 sail and power exhibitors from April 15-19 at Oakland's newly remodeled Jack London Square. Exhibitors praised the new sail and power format.

"The combined show was an excellent move and offered great value for both sailing and powerboat enthusiasts," said Trish D'Anna, owner of D'Anna Yacht Center, in a statement. "We've received several promising prospects from the show, and we are looking forward to the start of the spring season."

Jorgen Bateman, director of sales for the Northern California Marine Association, said combining the two shows was a positive step for the industry and allowed organizers to achieve greater reach in their marketing efforts.

"The sailing activities and show features helped us create a bigger, more exciting event and reach attendees interested in both sail and power," he said in a statement.

Overall attendance was reported at 12,100, compared to 13,200 last year. Still, Jonathan Banks, executive director of Sail America, said everyone was pleased with the results considering the state of the economy and the dramatic drop in attendance that other boat shows have experienced this year.

"The strong attendance underlines the importance of boat shows and the continuing passion people have for sailing and other boating activities," he said in a statement.

Craig Fecker of Cruising Yachts said he was pleased with the marketing efforts of the show and reported positive reception from attendees.

"The show has been excellent," Fecker said in a statement. "The response we've received is the first indicator for us that the market may be moving in a positive direction."

Next year's show is scheduled for mid-April at Jack London Square.