The Tauranga Fishing And Boat Show (TFABS) got off to a good start, pulling in around 3800 visitors over three days to the Baypark Arena, said organiser Lawrence Daly.
The Arena was hired out for a total of six days in order to pack in and out the 36 boats on display, nine jetskis, two fishing tackle retailers and 45 exhibitors, from across the country.
Daly said seven new potential exhibitors made themselves known to staff at the show, with three already committed to support next year’s event and many more additional exhibitors expected.
“Being a new business and format fishing and boat show, understandably many potential exhibitors chose to evaluate the first TFABS event before making a commitment to attend next year,” he said.
“The key to this type of event is an indoor venue, full facilities, free parking and all exhibitors being related to the water recreational interest of the visitors, with no unrelated fill stalls.”
Daly said that launching a new show in Tauranga was always going to be a challenge, especially after an absence of a couple of years.
“And we knew it would always be compared with the very successful and well-run Hutchwilco Boat Show [in Auckland], but it happened,” he said.
“Feedback from visitors and exhibitors has been largely favourable.”
The Arena (now the Trustpower Arena with December’s change of sponsor from ASB) was booked for TFABS 2019 back in February and discussions are underway into the possibility of using the larger hall.
That would mean no restrictions for boat height and width, which limited the number of manufacturers boats inside this year, said Daly.
“Where possible, TFABS 2018 endeavoured to support local businesses and contractors for all our required services to produce this show,” he said.
“Congratulations and thanks go out to all who exhibited and attended this year’s show. We have received countless remarks on the quality and effort made by all involved.”