As the weather warms up, boaters start getting the itch to get out on the water. But before they do, they’ll want to make sure they’re well-stocked with the right gear.

And the best way to find out what the latest and greatest in marine equipment is to attend Ocean Pacific Marine’s Annual Marine Show. Set this year for 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. dsc_0295Saturday, April 11, the Marine Show has been a fixture on the Campbell River boating calendar for over 20 years.

And it not only benefits commercial and pleasure boating operators, the Marine Show will also support the Campbell River Hospice Society. All proceeds from a silent auction will go towards the society.

“This silent auction is not to be missed as it is packed with great products and supports a great cause,” said Laura Kempling, Ocean Pacific Quality Systems Manager.

Ocean Pacific knows the local waters as well as anyone. The company has been operating since 1985 and is celebrating its 30th anniversary. They’ve come a long way since Bruce and Linda Kempling opened a small marine store at a location on the Island Highway now called Pier Street in downtown Campbell River

The area by the government dock had been a marine story and shipyard location since the 1940s. Five years later, the company purchased the shipyard next door and began operating the two marine railways, their first taste of the marine repair industry. They then demolished the old store and built a new 5,000 square foot shop at the same location.

Over the next 17 years, Ocean Pacific outgrew its Pier Street location. “We saw a significant need for a more substantial boatyard here in Campbell River,” said owner Bruce Kempling.

So, after four years of planning, Ocean Pacific Marine Store & Boatyard opened at its current location in the Discovery Harbour Shopping Centre in May 2007.

The boatyard became the largest boat repair yard north of Victoria and operates the largest Marine Travelift on Vancouver Island. Ocean Pacific services commercial vessels and yachts which require:

• Outfitting and installation of standard equipment;

• upgrade and modification to equipment and systems;

• periodic and scheduled maintenance;

• Structural modification and repair.

The company has considerable experience in the repair of all types of hulls including wood, fibreglass, aluminum and steel.

The boatyard is located next to the Marine Store in Discovery Harbour Shopping Centre and provides 5,982 sq. meters of hard surface which is serviced by a 110-ton Travelift. That piece of equipment gives the company the capacity to lift boats up to 90 feet long and a 24 foot beam.


In addition to lifts, in many cases, Ocean Pacific can perform repairs with boats still in the water using their 200 feet of working dock space, saving vessel owners time and money.

They also offer haul out and boat storage, keeping your vessel high and dry during the winter.

Ocean Pacific employees provide technical expertise specific to vessel refit and repair and command a wide range of product knowledge. And anything they don’t know, they outsource to local companies that can provide a wide range of expertise specific to the the marine industry. Such services are marine survey and naval architecture.

Ocean Pacific accesses specialized services (fire suppression installations, for example) from local providers which are registered contractors with Ocean Pacific. The company employs on average, 35 people.

Meanwhile, the annual Marine Show is the store’s biggest event of the year and has something for everyone including fun for kids, food, live music as well as tours of the Coast Guard vessel CCGS Cape Palmerston.

A highlight of this year’s show will be the local vessel called the Northern Lights which will be representing Campbell River in the 2015 Van Isle 360° boat race and will be featured on site during the marine show and available for viewing.

There will be representatives from the Vancouver and Seattle boat shows attending as well so you could save the trip and stay in Campbell River to access some of the top product and expertise on the coast.