The season is upon us.

showPortland gets everybody into the boating fever with the launch of the Maine Boatbuilder’s Show. This is not your ordinary stack ’em up every model boat in the world. This show is centered around the numerous boat builders and suppliers in Maine and the surrounding states in New England. There was a time when the show was almost exclusively Maine builders, covered much more floor space and there were many more builders exhibiting their craft, be it brand spanking new models or restorations of beautiful, timeless vessels.

Like every other thing in the country (except for the entitlement programs) the industry went into a tailspin after being hit by the brilliant economic policies of the folks in DC. Many fixtures of the local industry have reduced the variety of models, laid off staff or shuttered their doors with a big CLOSED sign out front. In order to get more exhibitors, the show was opened up to almost anyone from New England that wanted to pay the exhibitor’s fee and schlep their pride and joy to Portland. Even so, I noticed fewer booths than last year and the attendance on Friday seemed down. The show goes through Sunday and it would be nice to see more people come through the doors and appreciate the effort these good folks put forth.

Yours truly attends the show to catch up with customers and vendors and to see what might be a smart addition to FifthQuarter. I spoke to Terri at OceanLink about that Vacu-Flush toilet. That may happen still, but with the recent event of my company coming back to me, a lot of things are on hold. Bruce and Rodd from Schwab Energy Systems and Compass Marine, respectively, were quite busy explaining solar power applications and equipment. 5Q was supposed to get three of the Solbian solar flex panels this spring but that will be reduced to just one for now, enough to keep the batteries charged allowing the refrigerator to stay on while we are off the boat. Outside of the already many page To Do list, that will be enough of an investment.

Keep your chins up – I have it from good sources the snow will melt in Maine by mid-July.

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