The Newport Boat Show, running April 18-21 at Lido Marina Village in Newport Beach, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.
That’s a major achievement for the show’s producer, the Duncan McIntosh Co. — which also publishes The Log Newspaper, Sea Magazine, Boating World Magazine and Editor & Publisher. After all, how many companies or individuals these days manage to stay around long enough to put on a “40th annual edition” of anything?
Early reports indicate that this year’s Newport Boat Show will be the biggest and best in more than half a decade. The total number of boats exhibited at this year’s show is expected to be more than 20 percent higher than last year — and the number of boats larger than 60 feet in length is expected to double.
Social media is already buzzing about the show. At press time, more than 28,000 people had visited the Newport Boat Show’s Facebook page during the past week alone.
And show producers revealed that more than 112,000 visitors to Yachtworld had seen the Newport Boat Show ads last week. Each of those people was located on the West Coast AND was looking for a boat for sale that is larger than 35 feet in length.
Whether all of this interest — from both boat buyers and sellers — can be attributed to an improving economy or pent-up demand for recreational boats (or maybe both) is a question best left for “the experts” to ponder. What’s certain is that boaters will find one of the best selections of boats in years at the upcoming Newport Boat Show — and all will be featured at attractive “boat show prices.”
As always, the Newport Boat Show will present the West’s largest in-the-water collection of large yachts, including brand-new models making their debuts and ocean-tested brokerage boats that come already loaded with must-have add-ons. At this show, attendees get a rare opportunity to step aboard, inspect and compare these boats.
This show has had a colorful history, and you can read all about it in the article “Newport Boat Show Celebrates 40th Anniversary: Looking back on four decades of big boats, big attractions and big fun,” on page 28 of this issue.
Over 40 years of shows, attendees have been treated to some unusual sights, including a boat-riding tiger, a boat-driving orangutan, octogenarians waterski racing, the unintentional grounding — and carefully planned refloating — of Catalina’s former “Great White Steamer,” a boat-catching contest for anglers, a waterskiing dog, and the spectacle of seeing an brand-new boat sawed in half, and then taken for a cruise.
Who knows what you might see at this year’s show? But one thing you’re guaranteed to find is fun for the whole family — and more knowledge about what’s new in boating than you could gain in months of driving up and down the coast, going from dealer to dealer.