The holiday season is still in full swing—but when it ends, there’s no need to worry. We boaters have an entirely new “holiday” of our own, and it’s called boat show season.
As landlubbers prepare to return to routine, we get geared up for weekends filled with new destinations, exciting on-the-water technologies and the ever-intriguing promise of future days spent aboard your Chaparral. Even if the weather is too frosty to get out on the water, boat show weekends offer us the chance to embrace what it is we love most about our cruise-loving lifestyle. And that’s something to celebrate.
But don’t be afraid to branch out, too! The best boat show weekends start with a ticket—your entry to deals, exhibitors and one-of-a-kind finds—but they end with explorations into nearby attractions and adventures you never dreamed of having.
Today, we’re sharing a few tips for going beyond the boat show and getting even more out of the weekends ahead. Take a look.
We know there is a lot to do and see at boat shows—from boards to boats to fishing gear and water tech—but one of the most invaluable things you’ll find at a show is actually the human connection. Boat shows offer unparalleled opportunities to meet likeminded boaters, whether they are experts in the industry or just enjoy the thrill of a good cruise like you! Get business cards, phone numbers, social media, whatever you need to stay in touch. You never know when you’ll want the help of a vendor, or the advice of a friend who knows the ins and outs of a destination you’re visiting soon.
Come in with questions
New to boating? Or maybe just have questions that you’ve always wondered about, but never knew who or how to ask? Go beyond the “browsing” aspect of a boat show and bring your questions along! You are sure to find several people who can help you out, or at least point you in the direction of someone who can.
Don’t be shy here—we’re all boaters, and we’ve all wondered about the same things at some point or another. By coming to the boat show curious and full of questions to discuss, you will be sure to get even more out of your show experience, picking up insights that last you long after the weekend is over.
Try something new at every show
Even if you’re “just” coming to the show to check out the latest models or catch a fishing seminar, make it a point to try something new, too—something that wouldn’t ordinarily be on your list. Whether that’s a water sports demo or a class on something completely new and out-of-the-box, you might just pick up a new interest that fuels your passion for the water for years to come.
Grab some swag
One of the best parts about any boat show is, naturally, the cool goodies you get to come home with. As you make your rounds, be sure to pick up everything from stickers to water bottles to t-shirts and caps so that you can sport your favorite brands even beyond the hustle and bustle of boat show weekend.
Explore uncharted territory
Above all, let your thirst for adventure carry you beyond the boat show and into the thriving community it calls “home!”
Even if it’s too cold to actually go boating, you can still immerse yourself in the culture of unique communities like Portland, Oregon or Lansing, Michigan, which each boast one-of-a-kind locales, good eats and plenty of local character to explore.
We hope that these tips help you achieve an even better boat show experience! Check with Chaparral regularly to learn about shows and events coming to your area—or to an area you’ve been dreaming of traveling to.