Shows and Events

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This roundup of upcoming shows and events includes news from the Toronto International Boat Show, the Mid-America Boat & Fishing Show, the American Boat and Yacht Council, the Marine Systems Training Center, Sea Sense and the Mediterranean Boat Show.

The 53rd annual Toronto International Boat Show, Canada's largest marine marketplace, runs Jan. 8-16 at the Direct Energy Centre's Exhibition Place.

Special attractions of the show include an indoor lake that takes more than six days to create. More than 1 million gallons of Lake Ontario water will flood Ricoh Coliseum.

Shows with wakeboarders and wakeskaters will take place on the lake and attendees can get out on the water free and ride an inflatable boat, canoe, kayak or paddleboat. Other activities at the lake include Duma the waterskiing and boat-driving dog; personal watercraft, boat-handling and stand-up paddle boarding demonstrations; and canoe and kayak seminars.

Zac Sunderland, the youngest solo sailor to circumnavigate the world and the first under age 18, will share tales of his adventures on Jan. 14 and 15.

Attendees who purchase a boat during the show can enter to win $10,000 toward their purchase. Those interested also can enter to win a Princecraft boat, a trailer and a Mercury engine.

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The 54th annual Mid-America Boat & Fishing Show will be held Jan. 14-23 at the I-X Center in Cleveland.

The show will feature the newest powerboats, sailboats and personal watercraft, plus daily presentations from regional fishing experts, including 2010 Masters Walleye Circuit world walleye champion Johnnie Candle and 2010 Team of the Year members Ryan Buddie and Mike Knippenberg.

"We think 2011 is going to be a good year for boat sales, so we're pulling out all the stops to start things off with a bang in January," show manager Ken Alvey said in a statement.

On Jan. 18 each visitor that brings in four cans of food to "stuff the boat" for the Hunger Network of Greater Cleveland will receive free admission. At 5 p.m. on the following two nights, the show's admission price will be dropped to $5 for Put-in-Bay Days.

Visitors will have many entertainment options.

"The Angler's Alley presentations were so popular last year that we had to add chairs after the first day," Alvey said. "We've assembled an even better collection of speakers this year that includes highly regarded experts and the latest national champions."

The Time Bandit Super V Lite offshore raceboat will be on display from Jan. 20-23.

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The American Boat and Yacht Council will host a webinar on marine corrosion at 1:30 p.m. EST Jan. 19.

The webinar is being presented by Capt. David Rifkin, who will narrow his topic as he prepares for the event.

ABYC also announced that its webinar on the fundamentals of grounding, bonding and stray current, which was prerecorded, is available through Dec. 31.

This presentation is done by Capt. John McDevitt, who reviews the fundamentals of bonding and grounding systems on a recreational boat. He will explain the system and discuss the dynamics happening there and will touch on other problems that can arise when the system is disabled or non-existent.

The webinar is for entry-level technicians who would like to increase their knowledge about marine electrical systems.

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The Marine Systems Training Center in Thomaston, Maine, is offering a two-day class on marine weather topics by Ken McKinley, chief meteorologist of Locus Weather in Camden, Maine.

The course will provide mariners with an understanding of common weather systems and how they affect yachting and commercial boating activities. Participants will be given the opportunity to work with publicly available weather information to determine simulated safe routing decisions in real time and using historical hurricane data.

The Marine Systems Training Center is a program of the Maine Marine Trades Association.

To enroll, contact the center at (207) 354-8803 or info@marinesystemstraining.com.

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Sea Sense, the women's sailing and powerboating school, is offering two new programs.

The first is a seven-day liveaboard sailing course in the British Virgin Islands.

"The Sea Sense approach is to learn by doing, hands-on. We offer women the opportunity to gain skill and confidence in a relaxed atmosphere in one of the most wonderful cruising locations in the world. The British Virgin Islands, with tropical blue water and constant trade winds, is the perfect place to learn sailing," said Capt. Patti Moore, co-founder of Sea Sense.

The course will be held Feb. 27-March 5 aboard a fully equipped cruising sloop. The cost is $2,750.

Sea Sense also is offering a seven-day powerboating class in the Virgin Islands from March 7-13. It departs from and returns to the island of St. Thomas, cruising to St. John and the British Virgin Islands.

The cost is $3,495.

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CEO-Congress & Event Organization, in cooperation with Dudaj and Adriatik Co. and supported by the Albanian Diaspora Chamber of Commerce and the Association for Foreign Investors, is holding the Mediterranean Boat Show Jan. 10-11 in Durrës, Albania.

Albania's economy is growing, organizers said, and the show offers access to countries in the Adriatic and Ionian coasts, as well as countries around the Mediterranean Sea, a market of more than 90 million.

"So far, Albania had a moratorium on yachts and other motorboats for the private sector," organizers said in a statement. "Now with the visa liberalization with Schengen countries, Albania is allowing acquisition of all those interested in buying yachts and other motor boats.

"Also a priority of the Albanian government is the modernization of existing ports and constructing new ones," the statement said. "The port of Durrës is a unique example of the process of this modernization and a quick increase of port services."

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