Here in the Pacific Marine Expo (and National Fisherman) offices, we live and die by the Seahawks schedule. It doesn’t matter if you’re an NFL fan — Expo is planned around whether there will be a home game in Seattle the weekend before Thanksgiving.

The schedule is in, and our dates are set for Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Nov. 16-18.

“Last year’s Expo was tremendously successful, with nearly 500 exhibitors and over 8,500 visitors from 40 states and 24 countries,” said Denielle Christensen, event director for Diversified Communications, who produces the show. “With the continued growth and strength of the fishing and workboat industries, we expect another outstanding year in 2017.”

If history is our guide, we can rely on a show floor packed wall to wall with new products as well as time-tested industry standards. The 2017 Expo will include free educational conferences, a Safety 101 program, industry demonstrations, keynote addresses, the King County Maritime Economic Forecast Breakfast, a job fair, a Fishermen’s Lounge, daily free happy hours, performances by Fisher Poets, and the Fisherman of the Year contest sponsored by National Fisherman magazine.

There's still time to influence our conference content, too — this is your Expo and we need your voices. Send us your proposals, including ideas covering safety, technology, regulation, marketing and selling seafood, boat building, crew assets, cybersecurity, propulsion, insurance and climate change. Submit your proposals online through Wednesday, June 7.

New this year is the Alaska Hall — an expansion of the Alaska Pavilion — in the East Hall of the Event Center.

It’s the perfect way to celebrate our 50th anniversary of the show, which started as Fish Expo in 1967.

Jessica Hathaway is the former editor in chief of National Fisherman.

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