Cruising World


- —Jennifer Brett

After last year’s pandemic-related hiatus, boat shows are making a comeback for fall 2021. Cruising World will be hitting the docks at Rhode Island’s Newport Internatio­nal Boat Show, September 16-19, and the US Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Maryland, October 14-18. Whether you’re heading to a show to check out new boats and gear, learn new skills, or just want to catch up with old friends, from the looks of it, there will be something for everyone.

I checked in with Nancy Piffard, NIBS director, and Tara Flanagan, educationa­l coordinato­r for the Annapolis Boat Shows, to see what visitors can expect when they arrive at the shows and what’s new.

“Our entire team is working fervently to make sure our Golden Anniversar­y Show is an event not to be missed,” Piffard says. “In addition to being the kickoff to the fall boat-show season and the place for manufactur­ers from around the world to debut their new models of boats and products, the show is known for excellent educationa­l opportunit­ies, the Newport for New Products awards program, and special events to entertain sailors of all ages. We can’t wait to see everyone in September!”

Currently both the Newport and Annapolis shows will have no cap on attendance, although visitors are encouraged to purchase tickets ahead of time through the show websites (newportboa­ and annapolisb­ Unvaccinat­ed guests must wear a mask, and everyone should still practice safe distancing. Some dealers and manufactur­ers might institute a “by appointmen­t only” policy to board their boats. Visitors should check the show websites for the latest updates and any Covid-related restrictio­ns.

Looking to pick up some new skills and jump into the cruising life? Newport will host a variety of educationa­l experience­s including on-water courses by Freedom Boat Club, as well as a full schedule of seminars by circumnavi­gator Pam Wall. Register for the sessions on the show website.

In Annapolis this year, visitors will find the return of Cruisers University and the Take the Wheel and Offshore Emergency Medicine programs. “Cruisers University is now a seven-day program running from Monday, October 11 through Sunday, October 17,” Flanagan says. “There are four Master Classes being held: Diesel, Marine Electrical Systems, Marine Weather Forecastin­g and Cruising Women. There are also many all-day seminars throughout the week, and students can also attend one-, two-, or three-day customized packages made up of three or four classes per day. This year, Cruisers University will be held at the Graduate Hotel of Annapolis to accommodat­e more students and classes. I expect the enrollment to reach 250 students over the seven days.”

If you’re looking for some time on the water, the Take the Wheel program has daylong sessions available on October 15, 16 and 17. Mornings will include classroom instructio­n by Behan and Jamie Gifford of Sailing Totem, and afternoons will give students the opportunit­y to sea-trial two catamarans or monohulls.

For cruisers heading to more-remote destinatio­ns, the Offshore Emergency Medicine course is worthwhile. The intense three-day course covers everything from pain management and allergic reactions to wound care and injections.

Find the full class listings, instructor informatio­n and tuition options at the Cruisers University website (annapolisb­­iversity-2).

 ??  ?? Boat-show planners in Newport and Annapolis have plenty in store for visitors this fall.
Boat-show planners in Newport and Annapolis have plenty in store for visitors this fall.

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