Get ready to experience boater’s bliss at the 9th Annual Island Boat Show, taking place from January 19th to 21st at Island Community Church’s North Campus in Islamorada. This highly anticipated event promises boatloads of excitement and entertainment for the whole family, all while supporting great causes. Presented this year by GolfCartMax and TruckMax, the Island Boat Show brings nearly every local boat dealer together in one place. The event showcases the latest and greatest boats, from small fishing skiffs to luxurious center-console boats, with 18 boat dealers and over 30 boat brands.
Plus, enjoy on-site food vendors and dozens of exhibitors offering a range of boat-related products, including dock solutions and accessories, repair and maintenance services, fishing and diving equipment, clothing and merchandise, and more. As fun as the Island Boat Show is, its mission is even more impressive. Island Community Church launched this event nearly a decade ago to support local and international missions with a particular focus on local students. Over the past 5 years, it has provided over $200,000 in scholarships to students from the Upper and Middle Keys based on merit and financial need. Last year’s show alone granted $50,000 in scholarships!
The remaining funds raised support several ministries and local/international church missions, including Uganda missions and sending Christmas shoe boxes to children globally. For last year’s Thanksgiving Outreach, church volunteers prepared and delivered over 600 meals with all the trimmings to local families in need.
“The better the Boat Show does, the more we give,” Glenn Latham, a member of the boat show committee, explains. “Everything is run by volunteers, so 100% of proceeds go to scholarships, missions, and ministries.”
Attending the Island Boat Show is both affordable and conveniently located at mile marker 84 with ample free parking. The entry fee is only $10 per adult for the entire 3-day event. Children under the age of 18 can enter free of charge without a wristband. The amazing display of boats for sale isn’t the only draw to the event. The Silent Auction offers a full range of items donated by local businesses, from merchandise and artwork to incredible fishing charters and gear to restaurant certificates and a resort getaway. This year, people can bid on auction items on-site or off-site using an app.
“Local businesses are very generous, donating amazing items so we can help even more students and people in need every year,” Glenn says.
Plus, one lucky raffle winner will receive a high-end cooler packed with fishing tackle, hats, shirts, and other fantastic goodies. The prize is valued at $800, and raffle tickets are only $5. The winner does not need to be present for the drawing on Sunday afternoon. The Island Boat Show committee donates their free time for several months leading up to the event, not only because of the good causes it supports but also for the enjoyment it brings the community.
“Being around all the smiles and happy people makes the hard work well worth it,” Glenn says. “As a boat enthusiast myself, I love interacting with all the local boat dealers and seeing so many new boats in one place.” The committee extends its heartfelt thanks to the participating boat dealers, event sponsors, exhibitors, vendors, volunteers, and Island Community Church for their continued support.
If you’re looking for a church home or a place to worship when visiting the Keys, Island Community Church would also like to invite you to join their 10 am service every Sunday. Mark your calendars to have fun and visit the Island Boat Show on January 19th – 21st! For more information or to buy adult tickets online, visit www.IslandBoatShow.com.
– Jerrica Mah is a writer, Army wife, and freelance book editor, who loves to travel with her family.