Family fun of a nautical kind

Pint-sized boating enthusiasts Jacob, Joshua and Jemma Thacker are looking forward to the inaugural Gold Coast Marine Expo on November 4, 5 and 6 where they will enjoy free family entertainment including a YAK aerial show, wakeboarding demonstrations, a Kids Club with jumping castles and face painting.

There will be more than 300 new and pre-owned boats on display from classic timber boats to state-of-the-art superyachts, factory tours where people can take a look behind the scenes and meet the craftsman who build them, working demonstrations including Riviera’s static displays and 3D design technology, Quintrex the biggest aluminium boat factory in the southern hemisphere will be conducting factory tours on the Friday, there will be travel lift demonstrations, International Paints will demonstrate the various paint stages and how to restore an old boat and even mock rescues throughout the show from the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.

“My daddy is a boat builder and I can’t wait to see how they build the boats, when I grow up I want to be a boat builder too,” Jacob said.

Joshua said, “I want to see the planes, do back flips on the jumping castle and see some of the big machines.”

Family fun and entertainment includes the Kids Club, Classic Ices vintage ice-cream van, international cuisine and fresh prawns direct from the trawler.  The Artists Quarter where more than 11 local artists, including Peter Bedford who will paint a live model dressed as a mermaid.  The artists will complete a nautical themed art work for auction at the Club Marine Carnivale of Colour which will be held on the Saturday afternoon. 

Robina artist Peter Bedford works as a Life Drawing co-ordinator at the Royal Queensland Arts Society in Broadbeach and runs a weekly class every Wednesday evening and Monday morning.

Peter said the Gold Coast Marine Expo was a wonderful initiative for the Gold Coast.

“We have such a rich marine heritage and abundant sea wildlife so it is great to be able to celebrate this at the Gold Coast Marine Expo,” Peter said.

The Club Marine Carnivale of Colour begins at 5pm on Saturday November 5 and will include live entertainment from local band Kick followed by the art auction which will raise funds for local charities Paradise Kids and Sailability, and then a spectacular fireworks display at 7.15pm.

Gold Coast Marine Expo spokesman Stephen Milne said the Gold Coast Marine Expo was all about bringing people, community and the boating industry together for a weekend of fun-filled activities, live demonstrations, fine food and entertainment.

“The Expo is all about the boating industry inviting people to take a close look at boating like they never have had the opportunity before, in the heart of the Australian boating industry where there is 36 hectares of marine products and activities to explore and best of all, it’s free – there is free parking, free entry and free entertainment,” Stephen said.

“We will be showcasing a range of boats from $500 kayaks to $5 million luxury cruisers.  This is an opportunity for our industry to invite people to think about boating and consider all the different boating options at a perfect time just before summer.

“It is a great weekend for the whole family to enjoy and I encourage people to come along on November 4, 5 and 6 and explore the great opportunities that our marine industry offers.  It’s the boating industry’s equivalent of open house.”

Organisers of the inaugural Gold Coast Marine Expo are calling on all artists to participate in the Artists Quarter.

Email your background and examples of your work to Emma Milne at

The inaugural Gold Coast Marine Expo will be held on November 4, 5 and 6 and will be open to the public free of charge from 9am to 5pm over the three action-packed days. To find our more visit