Western Lake Erie is the heart of the Walleye Capital of the World, but if you want to talk fishing next week, you’ll have to head to the I-X Center in Cleveland on Jan. 12-15 to chat with Ottawa County experts about the latest in boats, fishing equipment and to tune in the angling seminars.
Many local fishing and boating exhibitors from Ottawa County will be at The Progressive Cleveland Boat Show, a 66-year-old exposition that will be all-new when it drops anchor in the extensively remodeled I-X Center for the four-day show.
“The I-X complex has created an exciting new exposition area,” said Michelle Burke, president of the Lake Erie Marine Trades Association. “This has allowed us to totally redesign our event’s floor plans, expand our feature areas, and add new attractions.”
More than 400 power and sailboats will be ready for boarding, ranging from the smallest inflatable to high-powered fishing machines and cruisers. There will be 300 accessory displays of fishing and boating supplies, marinas and clubs, nautical clothing and gifts, marine services, and dockside living products.
“Boating is family fun and our show will immerse visitors in that summer experience,” Burke promises. “Visitors will enjoy more hands-on and entertainment features. Take the helm of high-performance racing simulators in our Discover Sailing Center; enjoying an all-new Kids Zone; visit our new “Say Hey to the Bay” area; and explore summer in the Lake Erie Shores & Islands region.”
For hands-on experiences, show goers can climb aboard a paddle board or kayak in the Paddling Center Pool; hook up with a live one in the Trout Pond; learn from angling pros daily at the Toyota Tundra Fishing Stage or from atop the giant Berkley Aquarium presented by Vic’s Sport Center, all part of the show’s Fishing Expo section.
The new I-X showplace is located on the east side of the huge complex, remodeled in an area mostly unused for expositions before. Arriving through the new east side lobby, attendees will find themselves in the center of the show surrounded by boats and exhibits to the left and the right. In the new I-X showplace, the show is expected to attract the more than 40,000 Ohio boating and fishing fanatics that attend every year.
The 2023 show schedule: Thursday and Friday, Jan. 12-13, noon to 9 p.m.; Saturday, Jan. 14, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday, Jan. 15, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Adults are $20. All Military and Seniors 60-plus discount $15 at door only; Kids 6 and under free.
For tickets and show schedules: www.clevelandboatshow.com.