by Gene Muchanski, Executive Director
Dive Industry Association, Inc.
Not many things in the diving industry charge my professional batteries like going to Our World Underwater. I still get excited even though I have to leave my home in Sunny Florida to travel to Chicago in February. Now that’s LOVE. But here’s why I feel that way. Our World-Underwater is a Mid-West tradition that started 44 years ago. That’s 3 years after I learned to dive. I didn’t get to go in the early days because I was diving with the U.S. Navy and then attending college in Connecticut. But in 1982 I made it to OWU and have been going every year since.
OWU is the Midwest’s Largest Dive & Travel Expo. It’s the second largest Dive Show in the Country and many will say it’s the BEST. It’s refreshing to see a show so well attended every year and it’s great seeing people you only get to see once or twice a year. The show is filled with so many things to do, for divers of all kinds. The Seminars, Workshops, Meetings, Conferences, and Film Shows recharge my professional batteries and keeps me interested in diving and even makes me want to try new types of diving. There is nothing on the planet like walking the isles of the Exhibit Hall and looking at the latest and greatest dive gear and exotic travel destinations. I know, we all go to DEMA, but OWU is a consumer show and for the first time in the new year we get to walk around and act like divers, not Dive Pros.
The Diving Industry is a Profession with a BIG Tent. There are all kind of Divers out there. We have the Highly Skilled and Experienced Tech Divers, the Instructors and Course Directors, Sidemount Divers, Cave, Ice and Wreck Divers, and Photographers & Videographers. Not everyone uses SCUBA. We have Rebreather Divers, Spearfshermen, and FreeDivers. We have Advanced Divers, Sport Divers, and Beginner Divers. We even have old salts with thousands of dives who now consider themselves “Princess Divers.” Our World Underwater has something for all of these types of Divers.
Our World Underwater is a favorite venue for Members of the Dive Industry Association. You’ll see the best Retailers, Travel Pros and Manufacturers represented at OWU. view
Go to the OWU website, www.ourworldunderwater.com and see for yourself how much fun can be packed into 3 days. See the Weekend at a Glance, the Seminars, Workshops, Nightly Film Festivals, the Silent Auction, the Art Exhibition and of course, the Children’s Activity Area and Kids’ Corner.
We’ll see you at Our World Underwater this weekend, February 14-16, 2014.