This article is sponsored by Progressive Los Angeles Boat Show. Now in it's 57th year, the annual boating extravaganza will take place at the LA Convention Center and Marina Del Ray. To learn more and purchase tickets, visit

Whether you're a veteran of the high seas or a land lubber looking to invest in your first vessel, the Los Angeles Boat Show is the perfect convention for any aquatic enthusiast.

Kicking off Thursday, February 7 at the L.A. Convention Center and Marina De Rey, the four-day extravaganza covers all your boating bases.  Virtually every brand in the business will be exhibiting their latest toys, from Boston Whaler to Shockwave, while a free shuttle service will ferry attendees between venues -- any vessel larger than 35 feet will be docked at Marina Del Rey and open to viewing.

But that's not all. In addition to all the eye-catching boats and gear, there are hands-on clinics, too. From powerboat workshops in which pros teach you the ins and outs of handling and maneuvering to remote control docking competitions and stand-up paddleboarding lessons, you can literally get your feet wet in the world of boating. More practical fans can also expect seminars on boat and motor maintenance, while first time buyers can get all the information they need to make the purchase that's right for them.

And let's not forget the entertainment. Festivities kick off Friday night with the Boater Block Party, a shindig replete with live music, food, demos and hourly giveaways. Professional wakeboarders Phil and Bob Soven--stars of the hit MTV reality show, "WakeBrothers"--will be on hand on Friday and Saturday for a meet-and-greet, while Nickelodeon's Dora The Explorer will be dropping by over the weekend to mingle with kids. Add a Saturday afternoon wing eating contest, and there's something for everyone.

The Los Angeles Boat Show kicks off Thursday at noon at both the LA Convention Center and Marina Del Rey. For hours, ticket prices and full list of events, click here.

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