Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Monday, February 18, 2008

CanoeXpo 2008

Last weekend I visited the CanoeXpo Canoe and Kayak show in Coventry. I did not know what to expect. A few years ago I visited the Outdoors Show at the NEC in Birmingham. That was a huge show, where unfortunately only the big guys in the industry could afford a stand, thus only a handful kayak companies were represented there. How different the CanoeXpo is!
Organized for the first time (by Brookbank Canoe and Kayaks) I am really looking forward on how the paddling magazines will review this show and what the feedback is from the participants and visitors.

For starters it was a BIG 'kayak and canoe only' show; the biggest I have visited. A whole range of manufacturers and companies that have something to do with canoeing and kayaking were represented. From the very 'big guys' to the 'small-is-beautiful' outfitters and guiding companies. I have seen almost every brand of sea kayak that is available on the UK market. There was a strong USA presence with representatives that came over from the USA.

Another 'first' was the way the sales where 'coordinated'. Copied from Canoecopia, there was a central check-out. Again, I hope to read reviews from visitors what they think about that approach. The best thing of this first CanoeXpo, and that in my opinion outweighs anything else that can be said about it, is that anyone in the 'industry' (profit or non-profit) could afford being there and thus should be there next year! This is THE kayak & canoe show to visit! I hope the organizers get good feedback on this one. If you visited, let the organizers hear your comments and ideas! This can even be done on-line on the CanoeXpo website.

In another post I will write down some of my personal highlights of the show.

Thank you Mike Webb of Rockpool Kayaks for being their guest and Ann and Jeff Turner from Kari-Tek for arranging a place for me to stay. I had a great weekend.

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