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Certain technical seminars at TrawlerFest-Florida come with certificates of completion because, depending on the type of boat insurance you have and on the insurer, these documents might help you save on your premiums. Insurers like customers who demonstrate diligence. One course offers certificates that count toward a Coast Guard captain's license.

Of more than 30 seminars, eight earn a certificate for attendees. (Boat Handling Illustrated and Boat Handling On The Water make for two certificates, totaling eight.)

Everything You Need To Know About Diesel Engines With Nigel Calder, Steve Zimmerman & Adolf Ellert

Tuesday & Wednesday, March 6-7
8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
This is not the only diesel engine course for boaters, but it is the only diesel engine course for boaters taught by renown author/researcher Nigel Calder and veteran boatbuilder and yard operator Steve Zimmerman. Calder is PassageMaker magazine’s technical editor, while Zimmerman writes a regular column called “Troubleshooter.” Adolf Ellert is the top technician for Shearwater Marine of Stuart Florida, a division of Whiticar Boatworks and TrawlerFest partner. 


Medical Preparedness and First Aid for Boaters With DAN Medical Services

Tuesday, March 6, 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
“Can you help me here?” is one of the most commonly asked questions from the new cruisers we meet. The reality of it is that emergencies in remote places can have dire consequences unless you’re sufficiently prepared. Join Daniel Nord, paramedic at DAN Boater and former director of Medical Services for DAN, for an open discussion on boater safety resources and an approach to basic medical care, including case reviews that detail the initial steps in dealing with medical emergencies in remote locations. CPR/First Aid Certificate applicable to U.S. Coast Guard captains license.

Boat Handling Illustrated With Bob Sweet

Wednesday, March 7, 8:30 a.m.- 12:00 p.m.
(Prerequisite for Boat Handling on the Water, which has its own certificate of completion.)
This course, combined with “Boat Handling on the Water” will develop skills in close quarters maneuvering and docking, not to mention the confidence gained from having been taught by some of the very best instructors in the business. Bob Sweet is the author of several marine titles including Powerboat Handling Illustrated and The Instant Handbook of Boat Handling, Navigation and Seamanship. Wednesday morning is all class time followed by six on-the-water sessions in the afternoon and on Thursday and Friday. (SEPARATE REGISTRATION REQUIRED). The certificate of completion awarded to attendees may help save some money on their boat insurance.

Survival at Sea With Capt. Bob Arrington 

Thursday, March 8, 1:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Forget anything you may have seen in Robert Redford’s movie “Lost.” Surviving a crisis at sea happens because of preparation, the right gear, sea.m.anship skills and a good attitude. the topics that trainer Bob Arrington will discuss are: heaving to, storm anchors, drogues, ditch bags and communicating with rescuers. Brian Kinsella of Viking Liferafts will focus on liferafts, one of which will be deployed during class. For à la carte attendees, this seminar pairs well with “First Aid & Emergency Preparedness at Sea.” Certificate of completion.

Safety & Navigation with Radar & Chartplotters With Bob Sweet & Eric Kunz

Friday, March 9, 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Marine author/illustrator Bob Sweet and Furuno Senior Product Manager Eric Kunz will discuss the recent and rapid rise of solid-state multi-frequency radar and the demise of pulse technology originally developed during the Battle of Britain, and what this means for today’s radar consumers and operators. They will share navigation techniques and how to get the most from today’s modern multi-function displays, regardless of brand. Do we still need to carry paper charts?


Weather for Cruisers With Chris Parker

Friday & Saturday, March 9-10, 10:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Like most our presenters, weatherman Chris Parker spent years cruising down island. Parker’s lively and informative seminar is aimed at any one who wants the knowledge to make their own passage decisions with whatever information is available, including GRIB patterns and various forecast delivery services. For à la carte participants, this seminar pairs well with “Bermuda, the Caribbean and Beyond.”

Troubleshooting Electronics (as Opposed to your Electrical System) With Eric Kunz

Saturday, March 10, 10:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
First of all, we said “electronics” not “electrical.” This new seminar will prove that when marine electronics fail there are remedies available to a boater other than surrender and a telephone call to the technician. Eric Kunz, senior product manager for Furuno, takes a non-partisan look at how to troubleshoot hardware, systems and NMEA 0183 and 2000 networks using a meter and common sense. As a teaching aid Kunz will bring to class a networked system in miniature to play with. This is one of those seminars that can end up saving you more than the price of admission.


Every seminar except the diesel course and “Boat Handling on the Water” are part of our VIP package. Being a four- or six-day VIP gives you access their choice of attending any seminar (except the Diesel engine and on-the-water boat handling course). The cost is $399 for a four-day VIP pass and $499 for the six-day pass. Visit our ticketing site and do some math. You'll see how being a VIP maximizes your seminar buying power.  

SEMINARS: Tuesday-Sunday, March 6–11, 2018

IN-WATER BOAT SHOW: Thursday-Sunday, March 8–11, 2018

LOCATION: Hutchinson Island Marriot Resort and Marina, 555 NE Ocean Blvd, Stuart, FL 34996

QUESTIONS? Contact Jennifer at or (954) 761-7073.