Vancouver Show Delivers Better than Expected Attendance

Exhibitors at this year's Vancouver International Boat Show held at BC Place Stadium and False Creek Yacht Club February 4 to 8 in Vancouver, BC reported positive results despite a 10 percent decrease in attendance from 2008.

“I think we exceeded expectations,” said Jennifer Kastelein, show manager. “At the end of the day, product was sold. We had qualified buyers and exhibitors were left with a positive feeling.”

According to Kastelein, exhibitors were impressed with the frequency of advertising for the show prior to its opening, which included print as well as radio, and television spots.

“We tried to reach every corner of British Columbia,” said Kastelein. “We had a really strong presence in the Interior, the Okanagan area and on the Island. We know that these markets are really important.”

Several exhibitors at the five-day event also reported positive results and despite the drop in attendance, were pleased with the show results.

“It was too busy to get out of the booth,” said Garry Notenbomer, owner of Massey's Marine. “It was worth being here. I was pleasantly surprised.”

Jim Cascadden, the region sales manager for Blackfish Marine, the Vancouver dealer for several popular boat lines including Cruisers Yachts, Carver Yachts, Marquis Yachts, Fountain Powerboats, Silverton Marine and Proline, also reported a positive turn out.

“Things went great,” said Cascadden. “I do all the shows throughout the country and this has been one of the most positive. Despite all of the things we're hearing about, I'm feeling very optimistic.”

The show's in-water venue at False Creek Yacht Club was successful in setting a new single-day attendance record of more than 3,000 on Saturday, February 7.  Much of the traffic came from the Saturday unveiling of the Canadian-built Spirit of 2010, a 120-foot Platinum Marine Custom Tri-level Yacht, which had more than 2,000 visitors.

“What is so fantastic about this mega yacht is that debuted at the Vancouver International Boat Show at False Creek Yacht Club and it also came from a Canadian yacht building company,” said Kastelein.

Next year's Vancouver International Boat Show is scheduled to return to BC Place Stadium and False Creek Yacht Club April 7 to 11, 2010.