It’s clear that boaters aren’t going to let these stressful economic times keep them landlocked this summer, according to SeaRay officials. At least that seems to be the case if early registration numbers for Sea Ray’s annual AquaPalooza are any indication.
As of Sunday, the multi-location marine extravaganza had seen a 352 percent increase in boat registration and a 395 percent increase in guest registration over last year’s numbers.
Here’s a bottom-line breakdown of the figures:
• In 2006, there were 442 boat and 1,785 guest registrations by June 8.
• In 2007, there were 1,048 boat and 4,732 guest registrations by June 8.
• In 2008, there were 4,502 boat and 22,277 guest registrations by June 8.
“I’m almost speechless,” said Rick Stone, president of Sea Ray, in a statement. “This just goes to show that now more than ever people want to get away from the stresses of life and take to the water with family and friends.”
Last summer, AquaPalooza attracted more than 10,000 boats and 30,000 guests to 120 events thoughout the world. This year, the boating party was expecting to draw more than 50,000 guests this year to 150 events on lakes, rivers, bays and harbors from New York to California, Egypt to Australia. “But with the amount of registrations we’ve already had, AquaPalooza 2008 could be bigger than we ever imagined,” said Stone.
Most of this year’s festivities will take place during the last two weekends in July, but other events are planned both before and after these dates. Sea Ray and its dealers will begin AquaPalooza stateside from July 18-20 at the Signature Event at Coconuts at the Lake, at Lake of the Ozarks, Mo.
Attendees can visit the AquaPalooza Website at www.aquapalooza.com or call 800-SRBOATS for information.