altTiming is everything. The Vancouver International Boat Show, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2012, could not have picked a better time to return to BC Place, and to move its In-Water Display to the ideal venue, Granville Island Marina. The show returns to BC Place after a two-year absence: in 2010 it was displaced by the Winter Olympics, which used the stadium for opening and closing ceremonies, while in 2011 renovations at BC Place shifted the show to the new Vancouver Convention Centre, a smaller venue.

The show runs Wednesday to Sunday, February 8-12.

Back in the venue that has been its home for nearly half of its history, VIBS 2012 should enjoy a boost in interest and attendance based on its return as well as on the buzz around the newly re-roofed and renovated stadium, “a landmark in Vancouver’s cityscape,” as show manager Eric Nichol puts it. Like many show-goers, this writer is looking forward to see how the big reno turned out and how the boat show takes advantage of its renewed digs. And that’s all good news for the show and its exhibiters.

It’s also exciting to see the in-water venue shift to Granville Island – just about the best place I can think of for the floating show to make a long-term home. Granville Island is one of the hubs of the boat business in Vancouver, home to many boat dealers and brokers, and centrally located with excellent access by road, water, and public transit. With its public market, food courts and restaurants, the island is an attraction in itself, a great spot to hang out before or after you walk the show docks.

“Granville Island also has the dock space to enable the In-Water display to continue to grow in the years to come,” adds Nichol.

On the docks, you’ll find nearly 60 power and sailboats from about 30’ up to 70’-plus, so leave plenty of time for this portion of the show.

And while you’re strolling through BC Place, be sure to drop by the Canadian Yachting West booth (#174). Say hello, pick up a copy of our inaugural February 2012 edition, purchase a discount subscription, or just tell us what you’d like to see in our new magazine.

Visit for full details on the show, including times, admission sales, and land and water shuttles between BC Place and Granville Island.

Duart Snow
Editor, Canadian Yachting West