Well, the Baltimore boat show was a heck of a lot more crowded yesterday then one would have thought… or was it? The isles were pretty packed and there were even a few lines to talk to salesmen, but appearances can be deceiving. This year’s show is in a convention center hall that’s half the size of last year’s. So it was bound to seem packed, since the same number of people were packed into a much tighter area. That said, vendors and salesmen were up-beat, saying that they had great interest and decent sales, all things considered.
The belle of the ball was at Taylor Marine’s display, where they proudly showed off a new Grady-White 23′ center console. This is a brand new model and few people have seen one to date – I have a test-run scheduled on a 230 at the Miami show in a few weeks, so stay tuned to www.HookedOnFishingBoats.com to read about it soon. Some highlights I spotted were an extensive tackle station in the leaning post (one you’d only expect to see on significantly larger boats,) a removable cooler seat in front of the console (seen on plenty of other boats, but this is the first Grady I’ve spotted one on) and an LED Aqualuma spreader light that’s so bright you’ll want to shield your eyes when checking it out. Flipping open and dropping the livewell hatch produced a shushing noise, not a bang or slam, proving that Grady-White is continuing to build boats with tight tolerances and excellent fitting parts. C’mon, Miami!