Features at a Glance

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Progressive® Insurance Boat School

An educated boater is a safe boater

Boost your boating IQ! Learn the fundamentals of boating safety and have fun. Top-notch mariners from the Annapolis School of Seamanship will be on deck to lead an array of interactive “courses” including general boating safety seminars, proper docking procedures, a boating simulator experience, and tips and tricks to help ensure your safety on the water. It’s enjoyable and educational for the whole family!

  • Gateway to Boating: Get an overview of the styles and types of boats and how they fit the boating lifestyle you choose.
  • Watersports Safety Seminar: Gain the know-how you need to keep everyone on your boat —and on the water—safe, and ensure every outing is fun and enjoyable.
  • iNavigation: Learn how to use the resources available to modern boaters—from traditional compass and paper charts, to onboard electronics, to tablets such as the Apple iPad® to stay safe and have fun on the water.
  • Boat Systems: Learn how to manage your boats systems from stem to stern.
  • Docking & Line Handling: Does docking cause you stress? Let us “show you the ropes” with tricks, and techniques that can make docking easy.
  • 10 Steps to Becoming a Good Gilligan: Even on a three-hour tour, a good first mate is key to a great day on the water. This sessions covers the skills you need as a first mate.

Stop by the Progressive® Insurance Welcome Center or Progressive Insurance Boat School for more information.



Progressive® Insurance Flo-Motion Booth/lib/img/gallery/img08430114143.png

Boaters who have dreamed of sharing their love of the water with Progressive’s always happy-to-help sales clerk, Flo, can do just that at this year’s show. Stop by to climb aboard a boat set—complete with plenty of fun props— and snap a photo with a virtual Flo to share with your friends and family. You can also:

  • Kick back, relax and give your feet a rest in the Progressive Lounge
  • Play games and win fun prizes
  • Reel in a “big one” on the fishing simulator
  • Get answers to your insurance questions and chat with Progressive Insurance experts


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Fred's Shed Interactive Learning Center

FREE DIY seminars on boat and motor maintenance, repair and upgrades.

If you’re interested in learning what it takes to maintain, repair or upgrade your boat or engine, head to Fred’s Shed for practical, professional advice. Free seminars cover a variety of topics, include demonstrations of techniques and tools on boat and motor cutaways, and end with question/answer sessions. Come with your questions and projects to discuss, and leave with the know-how, confidence and inspiration to do it yourself. 

Check back this fall for a complete seminar schedule.


NEW! Take the American Sailing Association's Sailing Challenge!

New to sailing and curious about what it takes to handle a sailboat? Or are you a more experienced sailor looking for a challenge?
Put your sailing skills to the test and race your family and friends in the ASA’s Sailing Challenge. Take control of the tiller with one hand, the mainsheet in the other and set off on a virtual marina course. Sail head-to-head, tack, jibe and trim your sails to maneuver your sailboat around the course—the fastest time wins!  

Developed by the American Sailing Association (ASA) the Sailing Challenge is great fun regardless of your level of sailing experience!  



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Boating Skills Virtual Trainer—Interactive Boating Simulator

Take the helm of a virtual boat to practice basic boating maneuvers and improve your boating skills—without leaving dry land. The United States Power Squadrons®' new Boating Skills Virtual Trainer® (BSVT) makes learning fun and easy! It features a steering wheel and a real Mercury throttle you use to “drive” a 20-ft. console boat on a lake with other powerboats, sailboats, navigation aids and a full marina.
Training options include close quarters maneuvering, docking and more. Instructors can adjust current and wind direction and velocity, and day/night settings to vary the degree of difficulty and challenge you whatever your skill level.

Simple Machines Scavenger Hunt for Kids/lib/img/gallery/img1512210173.jpg

Presented as part of US Sailing's Reach Initiative

Kids can learn about how sailboats work as they explore the show in search of the simple machines used on sailboats by sailors to help move the sailboat through the water or to move items on board. Here’s how it works:

  • Visit the US Sailing Booth (S2110) to pick up a Simple Machines Scavenger Hunt Card
  • Search for examples of six simple machines on boats throughout the show
  • Bring your completed card back to the US Sailing booth for a prize

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PaddleFest—Free Paddle Sports Demos

In search of a new way to enjoy the water, spend time outdoors or energize your exercise routine? Head to the PaddleFest Pool to get out on the water and experience the fun of stand up paddle boarding (SUP), kayaking and other paddle sports. We’ll provide all the gear and instruction you need to take a demo ride—no experience needed. 

Get a first look at the latest in paddle sports gear and watercraft, too. Industry experts and manufacturers will be on hand to demonstrate everything from from fishing, recreational and whitewater kayaks to stand up paddle boards.

Once you've zeroed in on your favorite paddle sport, you can take advantage of once-a-year show deals from leading paddle sports retailers including Windward Boardshop, Offshore Marine, Quest Watersports & Fontana Paddle Company.

Presented by Windward Boardshop and Offshore Marine

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Sailing Simulator—Free Sailing Lessons

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to pilot a sailboat, here’s your chance to find out—without leaving dry land! Climb aboard the Sailing Simulator and discover how fun and easy it is to sail. Designed with beginners in mind, the sailing simulator offers a true-to-life sailing experience. You’ll tack and jibe and use the tiller to keep the boat level on the show floor as fans fill the sails and move the boat from side to side.   


Corona Find Your Beach Bar & Cantina  


Put yourself in a vacation state of mind! The Corona Find Your Beach Bar & Cantina serves up an island resort ambiance along with icy cold beverages and tasty casual fare including Baha Cali fish tacos, beer battered fish & chips and specialty flatbreads. It’s the perfect place to take a break, meet up with friends and ponder your outdoor adventure options. Todd Donnelly of the Mr. Myers Band will provide musical entertainment.

Click here for more information on Todd Donnelly and the Mr. Myers Band.


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Rockin', Rollin', Bubbles

Climb inside to take a spin—literally—in the Rockin’ Rollin’ Bubbles. Act like a crazy hamster, try log rolling tricks or race with other “water walkers”. It’s great fun, and best of all, you can go with a friend. Mom and Dad, be sure to bring your video cameras—the photo ops are fantastic!     

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Huck Finn Trout Pond

FREE fishing for children 12 and younger.

There's no limit to the fun! Catch-and-release trout pond, stocked with frisky trout is a great way to introduce kids to the sport of fishing. Be sure to bring your camera to capture the moment when your little angler reels in a "big one"!

Author’s Corner

When: All days of the show

Stop by the Author's Corner and visit with one of your favorite story tellers and pick up the latest adventure novels. Scheduled to be in attandance include: Stop back for a list of participating authors.

Progressive Progressive Insurance Boat School Corona GMC Fred's Shed Discover Boating Hyatt Regency McCormick Place NMMA-Certification Fairmont Chicago Offshore