Sail America/NMMA boat shows adopt single name

MIDDLETOWN, R.I. – The five boat shows co-produced by Sail America and National Marine Manufacturers Association will now all fall under the Strictly Sail brand, according to a release yesterday from Sail America.

The Strictly Sail moniker currently in use in Miami and Chicago, will now also be used for shows in St. Petersburg, Fla., Philadelphia and Oakland, Calif., replacing the Sail Expo name used previously, Sail America said.

The change was made because show organizers say it will allow for more powerful branding of the events as a series of the best all-sail shows in the country.

"Our shows include the most comprehensive gatherings of sailboats, gear and equipment in the country, and attract crowds that are passionate about sailing in five of the highest concentrated areas for sailing in the country,” said Sail America executive director Scot West. “The Strictly Sail name best reflects those elements of each of our shows."

The National Boat Show Committee – which includes representation from NMMA and Sail America – recommended to the Sail America board that it use the Strictly Sail name going forward, following the completion of surveys with exhibitors and past show attendees.

Exhibitors showed no preference between Sail Expo and Strictly Sail, but when attendees were asked, they chose the Strictly Sail name at a ratio of 2-to-1 compared with Sail Expo and 5-to-1 over the next option, according to the associations.

"I am extremely pleased with this decision,” NMMA president Thom Dammrich said. “With all shows falling under the Strictly Sail banner, it will eliminate confusion for our exhibitors, allow us to communicate more effectively about the shows in consumer and trade promotions and showcase these five events to sailors nationwide as the shows for everything sailing."

Dates for the five Strictly Sail shows are:

* Strictly Sail St. Petersburg, November 4-7, 2004.

* Strictly Sail Philadelphia, January 20-23, 2005 (Premiere event).

* Strictly Sail Chicago, February 3-6, 2005.

* Strictly Sail Miami, February 17-21, 2005.

* Strictly Sail Pacific, April 13-17, 2005.

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