When the Seaside Boat Show opens Feb. 12 it will be just in time for people anxious to fight off the looming cabin fever and according to Optimist Club boat show publicity chair Charles Smith it will be well worth the wait. After several weekends of snow the club expects the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City to be packed.
Smith has been a member of the local philanthropic organization for more than 20 years and has helped publicize the show for the last few. He said one of the reason’s for the shows continuing popularity has to do with the variety of exhibits available and the excitement it generates.
The show draws people from all over the region. In fact, many people who have summer or weekend homes in the area mark the date on their calendar as soon as it’s announced.
Vendors make it a point to get their spots as early as possible and Smith said many of them consider it the most worthwhile investment of their time and money they can make. That’s why even in a less-than-perfect economic year the Optimist Club is able to sell the vending booths out completely.
Although larger cities have more people to draw from, what makes the Ocean City event so much more popular is that, unlike Baltimore for example, the show is useful to everyone in the area.
In addition to the legions of boat and boating suppliers attracted by the Seaside Boat Show, purveyors of almost any beach recreation equipment you can think of make the trip to woo prospective customers.
“Anything related to water, you’ll find it here,” Smith said. “You’ve got to do it right.”
In addition to the funds they raise from the show itself, the Ocean City/Berlin Optimist Club also sponsors a $100,000 lottery, selling no more than 1,500 $100 tickets.
Anyone interested in purchasing lottery tickets can get more information by going to www.ocberlinoptimist.org or visiting Donald’s Duck Shoppe in the Gold Coast Mall in Ocean City.
Seaside Boat Show attendance information:
Friday: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Adults $8 Children $1
For more information visit: www.ocberlinoptimist.org