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Latest News: MRAA's Annual Conference & Expo

MDCE Launches Scholarship Program

Thursday, October 1, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Mary Gillen
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More dealers than ever before will have a chance to experience the industry’s leading retail event, thanks to the support of Soundings Trade Only.


MINNEAPOLIS, October 1, 2015 — In partnership with marine trade publication Soundings Trade Only, for the first time in 2015, the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo will offer three scholarships for dealers to attend the industry’s leading retail education and networking event.


“We believe in the power of education to help our industry improve and grow,” says Dean Waite, publisher of Sounding Trade Only, “especially when that education brings marine businesses together to build a better boating lifestyle for our customers. That’s why we’re so passionate about providing dealers who otherwise would miss out on MDCE with a chance to participate through this new Scholarship Program.”


Each scholarship includes an MDCE Standard Dealer Registration, up to $450 in travel reimbursement, and a three-night hotel stay at the Rosen Plaza or Rosen Centre Hotel, for a total value of $1,396 a piece.


Marine dealers can apply for a chance to receive an MDCE scholarship by completing the application available at by Wednesday, October 21st. To choose the recipients, the selection committee will consider how the candidates plan to put what they learn at MDCE to work in their businesses, as well as their financial need.  


This year’s event, which is scheduled to take place Nov. 15-18 at the Orange County Convention Center, Rosen Plaza Hotel and Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Fla., features 12 Pre-Conference Workshops and four concurrent Educational Tracks, including Leadership, Sales, Marketing and Service Plus, plus an MRAA Special Session and an Opening and Closing keynote.

In total, MDCE 2015 includes 35 educational offerings, and attendees are invited to choose whichever combination of sessions best fits their needs and desires. All of these educational offerings are included with a standard MDCE Registration, with the exception of the 12 Pre-Conference Workshops, which require a separate registration fee.


“Dealers tell us what an impact the relationships they build and the training they receive at MDCE has on the success of their business,” explains Liz Walz, vice president of MRAA, which produces the annual event in partnership with Boating Industry. “We are incredibly grateful to Soundings Trade Only for making it possible for us to offer that experience to a whole new audience.”

The 2015 MDCE has inspired record dealer registrations so far this year, compared to the same period of time in previous years. Inspired by marine retailers own recommendations for the ideal event, this year’s MDCE campaign theme — “Made New. By You.” — may become the rallying cry for a resurging industry.


About the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo
The Marine Dealer Conference & Expo is the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas’ annual conference and member meeting. As the marine industry’s only dealer-specific educational conference, MDCE offers an in-depth lineup of educational topics, a full-featured expo hall and a series of fixed networking opportunities, all of which are designed to help marine dealers connect with and learn from others who can foster their success. MDCE is co-produced by MRAA and Boating Industry, and it features Educational Tracks, Pre-Conference Workshops, Opening and Closing keynote presentations, and the all-new Learning Labs. The 2015 will be held Nov. 15-18 at the Orange County Convention Center, Rosen Plaza Hotel and Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Fla. For more information and to register, visit


About Boating Industry
Boating Industry is the leading trade magazine serving the marine industry. For more than 85 years, boating professionals have turned to Boating Industry for market intelligence, product updates, best practices and industry news. For more information, visit


About the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas
The Marine Retailers Association of the Americas works to create a strong and healthy boating industry by uniting marine retail businesses, providing them with opportunities for improvement and growth, and representing them with a powerful voice. For more information, visit




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