Wow, what a weekend! My first big event as a Wilderness Systems / Adventure Technology Pro Staff member certainly felt a lot more like fun than work. I got to the festival Friday morning to find all the gear laid out, smiling faces at the tents and a warm welcome from the crew.
Friday seemed to pass by in a blur. There were lots of new people to meet with a lot of traffic on the waterfront. There were quite a few curious glances as people strolled by looking at the sleek ocean kayaks, the user friendly recreational boats, and everything else we had on display, only to find 3 rigged out fishing kayaks down toward one end of the line. Some walked on by, but a surprising number couldn't resist; they just had to ask questions about our rigs. questions turned to discussions, some discussions turned to test paddles, and a decent number of those headed over to the retailers to order boats.
There was a lot of traffic on Saturday. It felt less crowded than previous years when I strolled around as a spectator. Still, there was a steady stream of folks stopping by asking questions and going on test paddles. For me the highlight of the day was seeing Kyle Sawyer stand on teh forward hatch of a Ride 135 and bounce while telling someone, "Yeah, It's pretty stable."
Sunday simply flew by. I arrived at the tent to help get everything set up. A few short conversations later and it was time for Chad Hoover and I to give a talk / demo about kayak fishing. Anyone who had ever met us knows that once we start talking about kayak fishing, we don't stop just because our time slot is up, so we ran a bit over. Then grab a quick lunch, stop by the car to grab my computer and set up for the next class. This time Chad and I were in one of the tent classrooms and no big surprise - we ran over our time slot. By the time we had gotten back across the pond there were folks waiting to talk with us. Pretty soon it was time to load the trailer and call it a weekend.
Thank you to everyone for making me feel like part of the family.