The best way to get the most out of TrawlerFest-Riviera Beach is to purchase a VIP pass. Being a VIP gives you access to every seminar except the Diesel Engine course. The cost is $375, but the seminar buying power is far greater than that, as anyone willing to go to the ticketing site and do the math will see.
For example, on Wednesday, Jan. 21, VIPs have a choice of taking the all-day "Bahamas Bound" seminar or the "Soup to Nuts Navigation," both excellent team-taught courses. Come back Thursday and you have multiple choices. You can commit one of two more team-taught seminars that stretch over two mornings into Friday--"The Boat Buyer's Survival Guide" or "Loop & Ditch: A Primer on Cruising Eastern Inshore Waters."
Or you can go another route altogether on Thursday. You can pick two out of four two-hour seminars on topics such weather, marine electronics, avoiding boat taxes and fees or attending an encore of a favorite at TrawlerFest-Baltimore, "How to Cruise Together Without Killing Each Other."
On Friday, Jan. 23, those who did not commit to those tw0-morning seminars have a choice of two tracks--either an all-morning seminar ripped from yesterday's headlines, "Cuba Update" with Cuba guide author Cheryl Barr and others, or two two-hour sessions with author and veteran mariner Bob Sweet on "Navigation--Quick and Easy" and "Advanced Anchoring," both well illustrated.
The weekend offers two tracks as well. Either you can sign up for the on-the-water Boat Handling seminar conducted over both Saturday and Sunday mornings, or you have a choice of two-out out of four two-hour seminars both days.
(Normally VIPs can just show up at the seminars they like, but if you intend to go for Boat Handling, we ask that you let us know in advance because that seminar is limited to just 15 attendees.)
The reason that seminars are only conducted in the morning beginning on Thursday is because that's when our in-water boat show begins and we'd like to encourage attendees to go down on the docks and go aboard those vessels, but there is one exception that every VIP is welcome to attend at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 24--our "Cruisers Perspectives" panel discussion featuring some of the most experienced voyagers we know.
This, the only afternoon session of the day, is an opportunity to ask a host of questions and see hear a variety of answers. Taking questions will be circumnavigators Bruce Kessler and Scott & Mary Flanders and Milt Baker, Jeff Merrill, Capt. Cheryl Barr and PassageMaker editor Peter Swanson.
TrawlerFest-Riviera Beach begins on Tuesday, Jan. 20, with seminars and goes through Sunday, Jan. 25. The in-water boat show begins on Thursday, Jan. 22, and runs through Sunday, featuring boats for long-term cruisers and liveaboards. Located at 200 East 13th Street in Riviera Beach, Florida, the new venue lies along the Intracoastal Waterway, just two miles south of Lake Park Marina, site of last year’s event. Set at the mouth of the Lake Worth Inlet, the freshly refitted marina is a perfect solution to accommodate cruisers that are not local to the Palm Beach area.