Source: From 1976 to today, Bahia Mar has hosted the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show every year but one.

YEAR AFTER YEAR, the docks in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, are lined with more than 1,000 boats for the city’s fall boat show. But they haven’t always been. Like most success stories, this one has been a journey. ¶ In 1959, only 13 exhibitors assembled at Fort Lauderdale’s, having attended the show since its early days, was there to see it. “I remember, more than anything, the transformation of the presentations,” says Terry Jacome, longtime sales representative and FLIBS attendee. Exhibitor displays were only tables with curtains until FairPromotion formed in 1994 and began to provide builders with open and luxurious roomlike stands. “Each stand would be individualized to express the uniqueness of the brand,” Jacome says. The presentations now reflected the same refinement as the products. ¶ And those products have evolved as well. “When I started, a 60-foot boat was big … 100 feet was the monsters,” says Greg Wyckoff sales rep, who will attend his 40th FLIBS this fall. “Now we are seeing boats that are 180 feet, 200 feet.” ¶ Plus, FLIBS now hosts about 1,500 boats across seven locations. If you walk the main docks from end to end, you’ll trek 1.6 miles. ¶ How will FLIBS develop in the coming years? We’re not sure, but certainly will be there to find out.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Yachting

Yachting3 min read
Out Of The Blue
IT ALL STARTED WITH A DOG. ¶ The owner of the 30-foot Apreamare Divina had anchored at her favorite beach in Door County, Wisconsin, and was swimming off the stern when she spotted a couple with a golden retriever dinghying around the harbor. “I call
Yachting2 min read
Legacy Ride
I WAS REMINISCING with my pal Dan recently about our careers in yacht design. He waxed on about a custom motoryacht he’d penned back in the day before he got to his point: “Coyle, I could buy her for little more than she cost to design. Can you belie
Yachting2 min read
The Itch
THREE YEARS AGO, MY OLDER BROTHER AND I sold the last boat we shared. The two of us have long owned boats together. During the past 19 years, we’ve owned three of them. Our similar taste in boats has always amazed me because we are such dramatically