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It’s All Happening at Strictly Sail Pacific

The boat basins are quiet and serene in early morning, but once show-goers arrive, they’ll be abuzz with excited ‘shoppers’.

© Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Got plans for the weekend? If they don’t include at least one trip to the Strictly Sail Pacific boat show at Oakland’s Jack London Square, you’ll be missing out on all sorts of fun, plus free nautical education on a broad range of topics and discount pricing on all categories of marine merchandise.

The four-day show, which is the largest sailing-only show in the western U.S., began yesterday and runs through Sunday. In the April edition of Latitude 38 magazine you’ll find a Show Planner which will help you map out a game plan for your visit. As you’ll see, there’s so much going on — from free boat rides to seminars on everything from cutting-edge electronics to yacht chartering — that a few minutes of pre-planning will be time well spent. (See complete seminar and exhibit info on the show site also.)

The new two-story exhibit hall holds experts on all aspects of sailing. And there’s an escalator between levels.

© Latitude 38 Media, LLC

One of this year’s unique highlights will be the America’s Cup Pavilion, where you can learn all about the upcoming AC 34 events, meet competitors from Oracle Team USA and Artemis Racing, and take a close look at the genuine America’s Cup trophy (Saturday and Sunday only). At the Pavilion you can also learn about the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup, which will take place mid-summer between the Louis Vuitton challenger series and the AC 34 finals, with 19- to 24-year-old sailors fleet racing AC45 catamarans! Should be great fun.

With dozens of new and nearly new boats to view, 110 seminars to chose from, and myriad experts to question, you may want to make multiple trips to the show. And don’t forget to check out Latitude‘s rally seminars: ‘Baja Ha-Ha How-To’, today and Saturday at 3:30-4:30 p.m. in E Pavilion, and ‘Tahiti & The Pacific Puddle Jump’ at 4:45 Saturday in the same venue.

Another enticement to drop whatever you’re doing and head to the show today is the Latitude booth party (#219-21) at 6 p.m., where magazine staffers will be doling out beer, wine and snacks to all comers. Although it’s slated as a Baja Ha-Ha, Pacific Puddle Jump, Delta Doo Dah, SoCal Ta-Ta and West Coast Circumnavigators’ Reunion Party, everyone is welcome, even non-sailors. Hope to see you there. Cheers!

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Christmas at sea onboard Mhadei. © 2013 Abhilash Tomy Even as we were writing about one benchmark Asian circumnavigation, another one was not even on our radar.