The show season opened in New England with record crowds as the New England RV Dealers Association (NERVDA), in partnership with Paragon Group, hosted the Jan. 13-16 Boston RV & Camping Expo at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.
“We knew from the start of the relationship that we had picked the best partner to produce our show and grow the relationship when we reorganized the Association four years ago,” noted Bob Zagami, Executive Director of NERVDA, in a press release. “The fruits of our labor were evident on many fronts this past weekend as the show opened to record crowds on Friday evening and the excitement and sales activity continued right through to the show closing on Monday afternoon. This year’s show exceeded all our expectations and the dealers, campgrounds and exhibitors were ecstatic with the results.
“Most of our dealers easily exceeded their sales goals for the event and noted the quality of the attendees this year,” he added. “Our successful seminar programs showed that we had many first-time attendees and many RV enthusiasts who have yet to purchase their first RV. A lot of them left the show after making that dream come true.”
“The Boston RV & Camping Expo was a great success by every measure this year,” stated Garry Edgar, president of Paragon Group, producer of the event. “We had more product on the floor than ever before, and attendance was up by 27%. The extra half-day Friday gave us a quick start and helped us get ready for the crowds early Saturday morning. A change in our marketing, adding more radio and a concentration on paid social media set the stage. The dealer discount e-mail piece brought in a lot of buyers and was a real success as well.”
The seminar program included Walter Cannon, executive director of the RV Safety & Education Foundation. “It was a real pleasure working with NERVDA and Paragon Group this year – what a terrific show,” said Cannon. “Bob and I have discussed having RVSEF representation at the show. This was our first year in Boston, but it certainly won’t be our last.”
Linda Mailhot, co-owner of Seacoast RVs in Saco, Me, and the current president of the NERVDA board of directors, added, “The quality of the attendees was outstanding as well as the selection of various types of recreational vehicles. Thank you to all of the participating dealers and the attendees that contributed to make this the highest attended Boston RV & Camping Expo to date.”
Zagami said, “It just seemed like everything clicked this year. We had an incredible array of product from a small units that could be towed by a motorcycle, a great selection of pop-ups and smaller trailers, a great selection of fifth-wheels, and motorized units with a good representation of Class A, B and C coaches – topping off with a 43-foot diesel pusher that had a sold sign on it by the end of the show.
“Our dealers reported brisk sales activity. The Boston show has always been identified with quality prospects that come to the show to buy new RVs, and they quickly clear credit. Our dealers tell us that sales made at the Boston show have the highest percentage of credit approvals of any show they participate in around New England.”