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Oriental Boat Show Kicking off in April

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Popular event builds on its previous success

The annual In-Water Boat Show in Oriental, NC has gotten off to a remarkable start in its first three years, and organizers are looking to build on that success in the show’s fourth year. The event is scheduled for April 13-15, 2012 at Pecan Grove Marina.

“The way that the show is growing by word of mouth is amazing,” said Sam Myers of the Oriental Rotary Club, which puts on the show. “We had 75 vendors last year from around the region and as far away as Tennessee and Florida.”

New for this year is a nautical flea market that will run alongside the in-water show and provide visitors the opportunity to browse even more marine merchandise. Representatives from all walks of the marine industry ¬¬— from apparel to diesel mechanics and sailmakers — will be on hand with information and products. Boat dealers and brokers will have new and used boats available for inspection both in the water and on the hard. A variety of seminars will be offered, including a demonstration of fire extinguishers and distress flares, a kayak fishing demo, boat maintenance and repair, and a presentation by U.S. Coast Guard Station Hobucken.

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Myers said the show has served as a platform to spread the word about boating in Eastern North Carolina. “It’s at a time of year that has good weather, and people are starting to think about getting on the water,” he said. “They love that we have boats in the water here at the show, and it’s outside.”

Oriental is a haven for many kinds of boaters due to its location along the Intracoastal Waterway, with access to the Neuse River, Pamlico Sound, and Pamlico River. Last year, the weather was less than cooperative for the boat show, and statewide tornado warnings took their toll on attendance. Still, more than 1,000 attendees and participants enjoyed the show, and it generated significant sales of boats and merchandise for vendors and dealers. Helping support the local marine industry while providing a wide variety of products, services, and information all in one place, Myers said, is what the show is all about.

For more information visit orientalboatshow.com.

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  1. Locals call Oriental the sailboat capital of North Carolina.  This event is attracting many groups like the U.S. Powerboat Squadrons to trek up the water, dock and spend the weekend.  My husband and I are looking forward to the event and I’ve been told that there are few boat slips left.  This is a quaint town with water views that will make you say “Wow.” 

    • I’d rank it as one of the best small towns in the country!  Certainly a tight knit community of “loyal” locals.


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Jules Norwood is a UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus and operates Carolina Wind Yachting Center along with his father David. Jules is an avid sailor and has worked as a newspaper and magazine writer and editor.

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