Central Ontario Boat Show

The Central Ontario Boat Show & Sale just concluded its third successful boat show. The show ran Family Day Weekend, February 15-18 at the Careport Centre in Hamilton. Overall attendance was 23,191, a slight 3% dip from 2012, however, crowds were still very strong.

Figures showed that while Saturday’s attendance was down slightly, Friday, Sunday and particularly Monday were very strong show days as compared to the 2012 recorded attendance.  Dealers reported to show management that a combined total of 118 boats were sold on the show
floor which is an increase of 12% from 2012 show floor sales, with many dealers confident in after show sales expected to close in the near future from the show.

The show featured over 200 boats representing over 60 different boat brands. Provincial dealers from as far east as Fenelon Falls, as far north as Temagami, as far west as Chatham, London and Sarnia and as far south as Lake Erie attended the show.

The show expanded this year to include a greater variety of boats and marine accessories. In his welcoming note to show attendees, Show Ambassador Ken DeWildt of DeWildt Honda Powerhouse in Hamilton, stated: “Whether you are looking for fishing boats, cruisers, sport boats, pontoons or personal watercraft this show has it all. There is a full range of boating accessories, engines and marine services…”

COBSS Fish ZoneNew this year was the introduction of FISH TV’s Family Fun Zone which featured fun activities and prizes for the entire family. Kids under 12 could try their hand at casting in the trout pond while seasoned fisherman could test their skills with the FISH TV interactive fishing simulators.

Returning to the show was the COBSS Boating Seminar Series sponsored by Capitalizing on last year’s successes COBSS introduced new seminars from Canadian Hydrographic Services and local fisherman from FISHNV and FINtastic Sportfishing. The Confederation Marine Modellers, always a family favourite, returned with their miniature remote-controlled historical vessels on display and in action. Families were given a chance to earn their own Captain’s License in the Marine Modellers pool.

The Central Ontario Boat Show is a strong member and supporter of the greater Hamilton Community. We are pleased to announce that the show helped raise hundreds of dollars from the The Modellers and the Boat Show Charity Silent Auction for Spec Kids!

Show Awards were presented to Don Hyde Marine of Hagersville who won Best of the Show, Dundas Marine of Dundas won Best Bulk Booth Award and The Store – Mason’s Chandlery from Port Credit won Best Booth Award. Show exhibitors were once again delighted with the opportunity to fuel up and mix and mingle at the daily exhibitor breakfast. "We were once again extremely pleased with the show and the support from the industry” stated Dwayne McKillop, show manager and president of Continuum Events. “With the feedback from our dealer base, the number of boat sales and the size of the crowds that attended the show, it’s clear that Central Ontario has put their support behind this boat show! This is clearly becoming a boat buying show with boat sales written on the floor increasing for the 3rd straight year. That’s good for the dealers, for the show and for the industry.”

Results from the online surveys conducted by TIX123 showed that 84% of respondents had a household income of $75,000 or more. Over 37% of respondents said they were coming to the show to buy a boat; 43% said they were coming to buy boating accessories and 34% said they were coming to learn more about boating which represents future boat owners. All positive statistics for the marine industry as consumer confidence seems to be returning.

Boat show roots run deep in Hamilton. 3 years ago Continuum Productions, owner of COBSS revitalized the show and brought the first boat show back to Hamilton since 1987. The Central Ontario Boat Show is now ranked in the top 5 boat shows in Canada nestled in Canada's 7th largest marketplace.

Next year's show is February 14-17, 2014 in Hamilton. 

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