Ever since Wilmington's new convention center opened a couple years ago I've been waiting for a boat show. I mean, why else even build a convention center, right? Well, the wait was worth it. This was a bigger deal than I would have ever dreamt. John and I were able to park on our side of the river at the USS North Carolina Battleship Memorial with our $10 admission including a water taxi to the main show over at the city marina. Of course we checked out Twiggy, the Waterskiing Squirrel before we crossed the Cape Fear. Twiggy was cool, her handler was a bit odd.
|Twiggy, in all her glory|
And what a day it was. The taxi let us off at Pier 33, which is sort of a part of the adjacent city marina but not technically. The boat displays began there, running around the pier and to three sets of docks full of everything from small flats skiffs to two million dollar yachts, all of which we were welcome to climb aboard. Boat shows have for me always been about dreaming, and those yachts offered some BIG dreams. It was fun watching the eyes of fellow show patrons bug out as they took in the staterooms and flying bridges of these ships. Normal people just don't get a chance to actually sit and walk around on these things.
|View from the Top o' the Yacht|
|Grills on the flying bridge are a ting apparently. They all had them.|
|Yeah. So. I need this.|
Everyone, from vendors to patrons to show staff to the captains of the water taxis, was as nice and friendly and happy as could be. It was full of people, but I hesitate to say crowded as it never seemed the huge number of fellow patrons slowed anything down or made it difficult to do anything we wanted when we wanted to do it.
As an example, there was a sailing school offering rides on their 27 foot sailboat. John saw the sign saying the next ride left in an hour and we stopped to ask if we could sign up. It was completely free with nothing but the softest sales job for the sailing school and sail boat club. We not only were able to sign up, but ended up as the only two on the trip. We sailed up and down the Cape Fear for almost an hour with two try really cool guys and had an absolute blast. It was a great way to top off the day.
|I have to say it was a good day|