Paul Jacobs, General Manager of the Annapolis Boat Shows, has announced that he and a team of four local business owners have a contract to purchase the Boat Shows from C. Edward Hartman II. Jacobs says, “I’ve been with the Shows for eight years and am continually impressed by what a terrific organization Ed has built. I am grateful to Ed for giving us this opportunity and trusting us to carry on the tradition of the Shows.”
Jacobs will continue in his role as General Manager and has pulled together a team of local maritime professionals with a passion for the industry, a respect for the Boat Shows, and a love for the City of Annapolis. The four other members of the team include Sheila Jones, who has been with the Shows for fifteen years and currently serves as Show Manager. Sheila will continue on in her position, as will the entire management team and permanent staff. Peter Trogdon, owner of Weems and Plath, an international marine industry business based in Eastport with a long history of exhibiting at the Shows, brings an international perspective. Bob Crain has worked the shows since he was a teenager. His company, Applied Lighting, is literally responsible for bringing light (and electricity) to the Shows. Mary Ewenson is owner of SpinSheet and PropTalk Magazines and co-owner of PortBook, the publications for boating on the Chesapeake Bay. The whole of this team will be exponentially greater than its parts.
“Under Ed Hartman’s stewardship, the Boat Shows have been an integral part of Annapolis’ maritime economy and its identity as a town,” Mayor Cohen said. “Ed cares deeply about the future of the Boat Shows, and I commend him for making sure they are in good hands after he retires. The new ownership team members are local, accomplished, and well respected throughout our community.
“Over the coming months I look forward to working collaboratively with the new owners to enhance the vitality of our town’s crown jewel, City Dock, while preserving the viability of the Boat Shows. I am confident the new ownership team will carry on Ed’s commitment to our community and enjoy a mutually supportive partnership with the City for years to come.”
The Annapolis Boat Shows not only contribute $50 million dollars annually to the local economy they also help to ensure the success of many not-for-profits in the community. In the past year alone, they’ve supported dozens of local charities, elementary schools and churches, and donated the use of the barge for the fireworks. The new ownership is committed to continuing and expanding that reach in the community.
Trogdon says, “We’re excited about the opportunity to bring more marine companies to Annapolis and encourage them to open operations here. We plan to connect them with the Annapolis Economic Development Corporation, so we can all work together to stimulate the economy and build the marine industry. After all, Annapolis is the Sailing Capital of the United States. We offer the best sailing vacations, the best place to work on boats, and the best place to buy a boat. I can’t think of a better way to support these efforts than through the Annapolis Boat Shows.”
The Annapolis Boat Shows have a time-honored tradition of being run by local boaters for boaters from around the world. The Shows are recognized by the international boating community as one of the most important events of the year. The Powerboat Show was the first in-water show of its kind, and the Sailboat Show is the largest sailboat show in the world. The Shows put Annapolis on the map in the boating community. The economic and community impacts of the Shows are significant, and the new owners are looking forward to continuing to put Annapolis and the Annapolis maritime community first. Visit the 2013 Shows and see what it’s all about!