Boat and Art Shows Help Local Economy

The service industries are getting a big boost

The Miami International Boat Show and the Coconut Grove Arts Festival are bringing money to South Florida this long weekend.

And locals like Miguel Villa are benefiting.

"I am basically driving the courtesy cart, doing valet, doing security, what ever they ask me for," Villa said. "It’s great. It’s a great opportunity coming here and it’s my second job and making money."

Another South Florida businessman says the increased business is great.

"It’s unbelievable. You are looking at a show between the Miami Boat Show and us combined probably brings in to the community in excess over $350 million of economic impact. Every hotel on Miami Beach is full to capacity," said Dave Graziano, who is in charge of show management at the Yacht & Brokerage Show.

The service industry _ the cabs,the restaurants benefit from these events.

Geir Kvithyll was at the boat show shopping for wife.

"Oh we love it. We came here just for this," he said.

While there were almost 500 vessels at the boat show, there is also something for art lovers.

"I think I’m into glass at the moment. I love the glass exhibits," said Irene Wiener.

Meanwhile, Shelly Haft said it's exciting to see how people express themselves through art.

"The turnout was great. People are always a big turnout here at Coconut Grove. So yea, it was nice," said Dirk Difler, an artist.

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