Check out the latest watercraft at the Grand Rapids Boat Show and see a waterskiing squirrel


GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Now in its 77th year, the Grand Rapids Boat Show is a great opportunity to experience the latest watercraft, giving customers everything they need to get their sea legs ready for this summer.

The show, which showcases more than five acres of boats and accessories, kicked off Wednesday at DeVos Place and will run through Sunday, February 20. The 2021 show has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Twiggy, the internationally renowned water skier squirrel, returns to entertain attendees of the annual event with several daily performances.

“I grew up on this journey with my parents, but as far as shows and caring goes, it’s been three years now,” said Chuck Best, Twiggy’s manager.

Twiggy’s Inc. partners with the National Safe Boating Council’s Wear It campaign to promote life jackets and boating safety.

Best said his father lost his life in a boating accident in 1997.

“Because of that, my mum put a life jacket on the squirrel, was promoting water safety in her own way, but then I partnered with the Wear It campaign to make sure we got a bigger message. important and now Twiggy is the animal spokesperson for the National Safe Boating Council’s Wear It campaign.

The Water Wonderland chapter of the Antique and Classic Boat Society also returned to the show.

As part of their exhibit, the Water Wonderland Foundation showcased their youth project where children are chosen to build 8-foot MiniMax seaplanes at the show.

“We have three families who had the opportunity to build a boat at the show. We are looking for children between the ages of 12 and 15,” said Scott Rissi, director of the Water Wonderland Chapter, as he helped 13-year-old Dawson Dowling and his mother Amy Dowling with their construction.

DeVos Place is located at 303 Monroe Ave. NW. The boat show ends at 9 p.m. on Saturday and opens from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, February 20. Admission for adults is $12 and $5 for children ages 6-14. Children 5 years and young enter free.

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