With the new year upon us, a whole new season of boat shows begins. Whether you are looking for a new powerboat, sailboat, or personal watercraft, a local boat show usually will have them all. Plus, vendors will have all the latest gadgets and accessories that make boating and fishing more fun. The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) website lists dozens of boat shows, hopefully with one in your area. If you don’t have one nearby, consider making the trip and attending one of these fantastic options.
And if you don’t need a new boat, or just can’t afford one this year, check out the Clymer Marine titles to keep you current vessel ship shape.
New York Boat Show – New York City, N.Y.
The New York Boat Show’s claim to fame is that it is one of the oldest on Earth, at 110 years. While older doesn’t always mean better, in this case it’s true, as thousands of early season adventurers purchase new models of every kind, get financed, equipped and accessorized all in one location. The show takes place January 22 – 26, but there is no need to bundle up or wear ice skates. Sure, there will still be snow and ice, but the show takes place at the vast Javits Convention Center in downtown Manhattan. That may be the heart of winter, but it’s never too early to start dreaming about boating season, right?
Miami International Boat Show – Miami, FL
Of course one of the greatest boating cities in the US would have a great boat show, and the Miami International Boat Show never disappoints. You will see some of the most amazing new sail and power boats on the East Coast, all ready to ship out to the Caribbean. The 5-day event spans three buildings, offers 3,000+ boats on display, and 2,000+ vendors. The amenities are fantastic, and the weather should be around 80, making this a great escape from the frozen Midwest. This year, the Miami show takes place February 15-19, so it’s the perfect excuse to give your sweetheart a boat for Valentine’s Day!
Northwest Sportshow – Minneapolis, MN
If you live in the Midwest and want to take advantage of the land of 10,000 lakes, the Northwest Sportshow is the place to be. But it is not just boats, for 86 years this show has catered to fishing, hunting, camping, and other outdoor enthusiasts, whether they have a boat or not. Don’t get discouraged though, there are plenty of boats, but also ATVs, UTVs and other powersports toys to play with. This event happens March 22-25, just in time for spring hunting and fishing, or getting ready for Summertime weekends on the lake.
Pacific Sail & Power Boat Show – Richmond, CA
Located in Richmond, on the same bay as San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley, and a short drive from Silicon Valley, this show is arguably the best show on the west coast. The official name is the Pacific Sail and Power Boat Show and Marine Sports Expo, and they show power and sailboats ranging from 16” up to 50”. Nice! Plus, it’s hard to argue with a day full of entertainment in an excellent location for only $12. Don’t miss it, April 19-22, 2018.
San Diego International Boat Show
There are boat shows all over Southern California, practically every month, but few of them are as big as the San Diego International Boat Show. This part of the coast is full of US Navy and Marine veterans, and even after they get out of the service, they still love to spend time on the water. And of course, there are both old money families and new money media and tech stars in So. Cal. which explains why they have a special section of 80 foot and larger yachts that you can explore, or even buy if your stock options are favorable. This is one of the few boat shows that take place after Memorial Day, right in the heart of the boating season on June 7-10.