Friday, February 26, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Going to the Show

Time for our weekly roundup of boating events around the world, starting with the Northeast Fishing and Hunting Show in Hartford. You should be there because WE'LL be there – look for the BoatNameGear exhibit (booth 249) and buy a shirt with your favorite fish stitched on it. The show is featuring that crazy Boston fishing guy, Charlie Moore, on Saturday. Several other fishing experts will be on hand all weekend to share their secrets. Oh, and if you go Friday you'll not only avoid the crowds, but you can save a "buck" on admission by following this link for a coupon. (Get it? We said "buck" because it's a hunting show. ha ha.) There will be a variety of sport and fishing boats on hand, and great deals on charters and fishing trips, as well as gear for both hunters and fishermen and women.

Other new boat shows this weekend include two events with names that make them sound bigger than they probably are. First is the Savannah International Boat Show. Savannah is one of our favorite towns, but is it really going to be an International show? Next is a show in Springfield, Illinois, which is calling itself "The Boat Show". Sounds like a pretty big event for a state that's landlocked! But you know what they say... A bad day spent at even a small boat or fishing show is better than a good day spent at work.

As always, there's more info about these and other events for outdoors-men and women on our boat show calendar.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Who Answers the Call?

When a boat with an EPIRB device gets into trouble and a signal is sent, who answers the call?

Never gave it much thought until seeing a tweet from Peter Mello mentioning an interview with an organization called AMVER on his Sea-Fever Blog.

Turns out that the US Coast Guard sponsors AMVER, which receives EPIRB distress calls worldwide and sends the nearest ships to aid in a rescue.

How does AMVER know which ships to send? How quickly does AMVER decide to send help before confirming a signal is real? How can you help?

To get the answers to these and many other interesting questions - answers that can help save lives - take a few minutes and check out Peter's podcast as he gets the facts about AMVER, as well as one of the recent rescues in which they were involved. (Full blog post and interview)

You can also learn more about AMVER at their official website.

U.S. Coast Guard photo by Coast Guard Cutter Northland,


Monday, February 22, 2010

Gone Fishing in CT

We're getting jazzed about the Northeast Fishing and Hunting Show in Hartford this coming weekend, and if you're in the CT area, you should be too.

If you've never been, fishing shows are a lot like boat shows, only with a lot more to do. The Hartford show, for example, has seminars from fishing and hunting celebrities Charlie Moore, Captain Bill Brown and Peter Fiduccia, among many others – more than 60 hours of seminars in all!

It also includes an indoor trout pond, a bass casting area and a fly tying center, so there are plenty of hands-on adventures the whole family can enjoy.

More details and a coupon for admission Friday night.

In other boating news, the Baltimore Sun did an interesting article about how local live-aboards weathered the recent record snow fall. I thought these guys were all in the Caribbean this time of year!

And in the Midwest, one of Indiana's local CBS station, WSBT 2, did a story on the Asian Carp invasion threatening Lake Michigan.

Until next time, think warm thoughts!


Friday, February 19, 2010

Goin Cruisin

In honor of Smokey Robinson's 70th birthday, today's Sea Song of the Week is Cruisin'.

Sure, if you listen to the lyrics it's clear that this is not technically a sea song, but come on - it's Smokey's birthday! And besides, this is a great tune to listen to while you're on a boat.

Happy Birthday Smokey!


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Boat Shows Two by Two

Now that the Miami International Boat Show (MIBS) has ended, there are boat shows on virtually every corner this weekend.

Interestingly, many states are even holding boat shows in two locations simultaneously. California has shows in both LA and Alameda. On the east coast, Massachusetts is hosting a big boat show in Boston and a smaller "Sportsmens and Boating Show" at the Big E fairgrounds in Springfield. And in the middle, sort of, Michigan is heading into the second weekend of the Detroit show just as the Grand Rapids boat show begins.

Breaking the twofer trend are shows in Duluth, Michigan, and Mumbai, India (Like Miami, this show is also referred to as MIBS (Mumbai International Boat Show).

Details on these events and more are available in our boat show calendar.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

America gets its cup back

As a casual, recreational boater, did you know that the 33rd America's Cup just happened?

Were you aware that the billionaire CEO of a giant software company called Oracle led a radically designed yacht across the Mediterranean to win the bragging rights to the oldest active trophy in international sports?

Admittedly, many of us were too busy watching the Olympics, or were distracted when the first race was postponed due to lack of wind. Maybe you were turned off by the two-plus-year courtroom drama between the Cup contestants over the rules, or questioned the validity of the technology used in this year's boats.

Maybe you missed it, but don't dismiss it. The America's Cup is back in the country of its namesake after a 15 year drought, the longest in the contest's history. The technology behind the winning boat is considered revolutionary by some, and could change the face of the Cup for all future races. As an American, you could be proud of our country, our team and one of our nation's amazing entrepreneurial success stories in Larry Ellison and Oracle.

Don't worry, thanks to the Internet, you can watch the victory and learn more about the contest easily at several sites.,, and the NY Times are good places to start.

Thank you, Larry, for bringing the Cup back home.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Mooloolaba to Miami

This Friday's Sea Song of the Week is from Eric Stone. Often described as a "young Jimmy Buffet", you'll love the island feel of Eric's nautical-lifestyle music. His entire collection would make the perfect soundtrack to any cruising adventure. In fact, his sound and style are what we were going for when we first started coming up with the Sea Song of the Week several years ago.

If you enjoy this Meet Me in Mooloolaba video by Eric Stone, make sure you catch him live at the Miami Boat Show this weekend, or in the US Virgin Islands pretty much any day after that for the next several months (What a life!)

Be sure to check out our Sea Songs from previous weeks at


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Miami Miami Miami

We highlight boat shows every week, but few as big as Miami, even as this year's show is smaller than usual.

If delayed flights and trains, unplowed roads, a hot Valentine's date, or the economy are not holding you back, the Miami Boat Show is only one place to be this weekend. Even a scaled down Miami show is still bigger and better than most others boat shows around the country throughout the year.

This year the show spans two locations. First there's the Miami Beach Convention Center with exhibits and boats up to 85 feet long on display in and outdoors. Second, there's the Sea Isle Marina & Yachting Center… That's where you'll find hundreds of powerboats on display this year as you walk the docks, as well as the show within the show, Strictly Sail Miami. Strictly Sail could easily stand alone as its own show, featuring sailboat rides, sailing seminars, an Eric Stone concert, and of course, some really big sailboats.

We should mention that there are other boat shows this weekend in Syracuse, New York and what looks like a pretty good sized show in St. Louis, MO.

Details for all these and other events are on our boat show calendar.


Monday, February 08, 2010

Fill Up and Save

After two years of development, is announcing the availability of their unique marine industry portal, just in time for the 2010 Miami Boat Show. Among the site's services are two tools you can use to save money on, you guessed it, marine fuel.

First, for the recreational or commercial boater, there is the FuelDockPrices service, which allows you to enter an address online and find all the current fuel prices on marine gasoline and diesel within a selected radius. A quick search of fuel prices in Miami, for example, showed a range of prices from $3.16 to $4.45. With that much disparity, it's easy to see how even a small deck boat or express cruiser could save hundreds of dollars or more over the course of a boating season.

Next, FuelBidDesk allows members to access wholesale prices when purchasing at least 1,000 gallons of marine fuel. This service is helpful for any large boat, organization or even a gathering where a large quantity of fuel is needed. Obvious examples include marinas and yacht clubs. But this service offers opportunities for savings to less obvious groups as well, including organizers of fishing tournaments, charter fleets, tug boat owners and even boat clubs.

Access to the FuelDockPrices search tool is free for now, and the FuelBidDesk system is available for what looks like a nominal fee compared to the savings one can enjoy with access to the club. Given the current state of the economy and the opportunity for savings, why wouldn’t every boater use these tools?


Friday, February 05, 2010

Cold for a Sea Song

Who knew Coldplay would ever be picked for our Sea Song of the Week? How could they not with a song titled Swallowed in the Sea? Here's an acoustic version of it from Japan that we found on YouTube. If you close your eyes and imagine sailing to this song, it helps warm you up inside.

Looking for something a little warmer? Check out last week's Sea Song, which may or may not have been Jimmy Buffet.


Thursday, February 04, 2010

For Ladies Only

Today’s boat show round up includes a special event in SoCal this weekend, the 21st Annual Women's Sailing Convention (brochure pictured courtesy of the event website.)

Otherwise, this weekend's boat show schedule is light with most industry folks looking to avoid the disappointment of low turnout to their events on Superbowl Sunday. The industry is also gearing up for the big one in Miami next week.

That being said, if you are in Atlantic City, Tulsa, Seattle or Fort Wayne, Indiana, there's a boat show near you going on right now.

Did you go to the Hartford Boat Show last weekend? BoatNameGear was there, and we were pleasantly surprised with the turnout – especially on Saturday morning and afternoon. Lots of folks came by the booth to look for boat name ideas or gear for a recently purchased boat. That's right, many people told us they recently bought a boat - we heard the same thing from the dealers. In fact, one of the largest boat dealers in Southern New England told us they sold 20 boats at the show. Not bad for a town like Hartford in January, especially in this economy.

If you attended the New York show a couple weeks back (or even if you didn't but thought about going), the National Marine Manufacturers Association wants to hear from you and have put out this survey to get your feedback on the show.

More information about all these shows and more, as always, can be found on our boat show calendar.


Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Six More WHAT?

After spending the weekend indoors at the Hartford Boat Show in the warm CT Convention Center, surrounded by hundreds of boats and thousands of boaters while listening to Jimmy Buffet, it was almost easy to forget that it was five degrees outside.

Yes, here in New England, boating weather is still a few months away. That little rodent didn't help our cause this morning when he popped out of his hole and saw his shadow, eliminating any hope in our superstitious minds for an early boating season.

But remember what Jimmy Buffet preaches – you can change your attitude by changing your latitude. In fact, now is a great time to head south where it's warmer, and charter someone else's boat. Or if travel is not in your budget, visit a boat show close to your home, climb on a boat and relax. Speaking from recent experience, a visit to even the smallest of boat shows can help put you in a sunshine state of mind.