NMMA concluded its first weekend of the 2020 winter boat show season on Sunday, January 12, attracting more than 62,000 attendees across all shows.
While inclement weather impacted attendance in each market, all shows have received early positive reports from exhibitors that the crowds were buying product and strong leads were generated.
Though attendance was ahead of 2019 going into the weekend, Chicago experienced one of the first snowfalls of the season, with high wind speeds and slippery road conditions on Saturday. Both Nashville and Kansas City faced inclement winter weather as well, including a tornado warning in Nashville and ice storms in Kansas City. Playoff professional football was also a factor in the Nashville and Kansas City markets.
The Progressive Insurance Chicago Boat, RV & Sail Show reported an attendance of 39,346, down 8% from 2019. The Progressive Insurance Nashville Boat Show reported an attendance of 12,866, down 18% from 2019. And the Progressive Insurance Kansas City Boat & Sportshow had 11,051 attendees, flat with 2019 attendance, which was impacted by professional football last year as well.
The Chicago show’s brand new Discover Boating Experience (DBX), the new $5 after 5 p.m. promotion in Chicago and Nashville, Career Day in Kansas City, and popular features like Progressive’s Boathouse and seminar speakers in all markets helped generate interest from media, with coverage across all of the major local outlets.