The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) has announced it is combining the Chicago Boat, Sports & RV Show with Strictly Sail Chicago. The event will be known as the Progressive Insurance Chicago Boat, RV & Strictly Sail Show and is scheduled for Jan. 14-18, 2015. The association says the combination of the shows is a result of market demand for a one-stop shop for all things boating and outdoors and significant support from the boating, RV and sailing industries.
In a press release, NMMA Executive Vice President Ben Word, says, “Joining Chicagoland’s two winter boat shows creates a world of opportunity for all exhibitors, driving customers to one premier destination for boating, sailing and the outdoors. With a combined attendee base exceeding 50,000 people from throughout the Midwest, the new Progressive Insurance Chicago Boat, RV & Strictly Sail Show will deliver more buyers, more opportunities to reach new audiences, and more value for everyone involved.”
Maintaining its regular January dates, the new exhibition will stay at Chicago’s McCormick Place, but move to the South Hall, which features 840,000 square feet of exhibit space all on one level and can accommodate larger power and sailboats. NMMA expects the 2015 show is expected to be some 30 percent larger than in the past.
To preserve the integrity and brand of Strictly Sail, the show will feature three distinct areas-powerboats, RVs and “Strictly Sail Chicago.” According to the release, Sail-specific booths will be located within the sail section, while marine, travel and outdoor gear will occupy a central location on the show floor. Plans also include enhanced attractions and a premier lineup of seminars covering all aspects of boating and the outdoors, including the extensive educational offerings sailors have come to expect from Strictly Sail Chicago.