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Boat lovers can get an eyeful in Maine

Annual Boatbuilder’s Show’s unique approach draws custom-boat enthusiasts to Portland

Annual Boatbuilder’s Show’s unique approach draws custom-boat enthusiasts to Portland

Custom boat lovers from all over the country, and all over the world, will soon descend upon Portland, Maine, for the 19th annual Maine Boatbuilder’s Show. Hosted by Portland Yacht Services, this year’s show is set to run March 17 to 19.

“There’s no other boat show like this one,” show organizer Joanna Sprague says. “There will be no salespeople. The show is a forum for people who love custom-built boats to establish a relationship directly with the builders themselves, and to get answers to their boating questions.”

More than 10,000 people from across the country, the Caribbean, Europe and South America are expected to make it to the show, says Sprague. The selection of about 100 power- and sailboats, both wood and glass, ranges from dinghies and prams to 50-foot yachts. The majority will be between 20 and 30 feet.

“It’s nice getting all of these wonderful boats together,” says Sprague. “It’s convenient and you can really see how the quality of the boats continues to improve each year.”

On hand will be some 200 exhibitors from all over the country. A sampling of exhibitors includes Albin Marine, Backcove Yachts, Ellis Boat Company, Morris Yachts, the Nova Scotia Boatbuilder’s Association and Pulsifer Hampton. In addition to the boats and new products a number of free seminars will be available. Likely topics will include cruising, engine maintenance and how to buy a boat.

“We have a concentration of knowledgeable people that come to the show,” Sprague says. “The Maine Boatbuilder’s Show is different than what you’d see at your local civic center. It’s really special.”

Hours for the show are Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door for $15 per person per day. For more information, call (207) 774-1067, or log on to