2008 Seattle Boat Show expands

SEATTLE – The Seattle Boat Show is expanding in 2008 to provide more room for boats, yachts, engines, electronics and other accessories, organizers said in a press release yesterday.

The 2007 Seattle Boat Show encompassed more than 700,000 square feet of space on land at Qwest Field and on the water at South Lake Union. At Qwest Field, organizers are pushing the show out onto the football turf where the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks play. The football field expansion will provide an additional 100,000 square feet of boat displays and show attractions.

Organizers plan to include a number of promotions on the field, including a field goal kicking contest for a chance to win a boat, a casting contest and two catch and release trout ponds for kids and families. This is the first time in Qwest Field’s history that a consumer show has expanded onto the football field.

“The Seattle Boat Show is healthy and continues to grow, which is a reflection of the strength of boating in the Northwest,” said George Harris, vice president and boat show director at the Northwest Marine Trade Association. “In recent years, we’ve had to get pretty creative to find more space to meet the demand of the industry. Moving onto the football field was really the only other place to go.”

The Seattle Boat Show moved from the Kingdome to Qwest Field Event Center in 2000, and space demand has not slowed. The show is more than 50 percent larger than it was when held in the Kingdome. In 2004, organizers converted the second floor of the adjacent parking garage for accessory display space. In 2005, the show expanded onto Qwest Field’s Club Level to house a full-service restaurant and the event’s more than 200 seminars.

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