Controversy continues over New York boat show dates

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The New York Boat Show isn’t getting special treatment from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office, according to the organizers. It’s simply going back to the dates it held for more than a century.

That’s according to National Marine Manufacturers Association regional show manager Jon Pritko, who told Soundings that the series of events that led the governor to give the show new dates, beginning in 2014, is being misrepresented.

“We didn’t get new dates. We’re just going back to our original dates,” Pritko said. “We were moved to less desirable dates and attendance dropped. They didn’t work.”

“I actually have a picture of the New York show history,” Pritko said. “There’s a picture of a boat being pulled in by horses. It’s very impactful. When you see that, you realize that the show is 109 years old. We met with the governor and ... gave him the facts. We had those dates for almost 100 years, until we started getting moved around 10 years ago.”
Cuomo announced that the show will move from near New Year’s Day — where Pritko said it got pushed after 100 years about a decade ago — to its traditional mid- to late-January pattern from 2015 to 2019 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

In addition, the NMMA plans to introduce a fall boating show at the Javits Center and has secured September dates from 2014-2019. That show will include an in-water element on the Hudson River, Pritko said, which organizers and local officials believe will bring more visitors to both the city and to boating.

“It’s really exciting,” Pritko said of adding an in-water component to a new fall show. “We have this opportunity to really create a different and unique event in the Northeast.”

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