Gun shows are held all over the country in most cities. The simplest way to find a gun show is go to the internet and check out the gun show sites. You can also narrow down your search by typing in the name of the city that you are planning on visiting. I think that this is one of the best ways to visit a show, especially the larger ones. These shows generally run Saturday and Sunday, while some of the largest shows can run on Friday, also. There are gun shows all around us in the north Georgia and Tennessee area. The shows nearby are generally the smaller shows, and you can see everything there in about two or three hours. The larger shows will take you most of the day, depending on how fast or slow you move through the show.
Florida has a gun show going on just about every weekend. These shows can be on the larger scale. I attended one at Ft. Myers, Fla., and it was one that would take about four to five hours to go through. Planning on going to a gun show while vacationing in Florida would be a break from the beach life and give you some relaxing time, just slowing down a little. There is a show in Tulsa, Okla., which I have been told is on two levels. I have never been to this show, but it is on my list of shows to visit. There are also specialty shows that you can attend, such as military, western, antique and modern firearms. Take your pick.
Now we will look at ways to make your first gun show enjoyable. The first thing to plan on is how you should dress. These shows are for leisure attire, something comfortable. I like to wear jeans and a comfortable pair of shoes. The ladies can do the same; I have seen slacks, jeans, dresses and shorts. I would wear a good walking shoe, ladies; remember to go comfortable, and you will be fine. In the western shows, you can see folks wearing all designs of western clothing. I always like to arrive at a show as close to when the doors open as possible. I notice that most shows start at 9 a.m. and go to about 5 p.m. The shows just about always have venders there to make hamburgers and all of the fixings. There is no need to try and carry food or snacks, unless you have a food allergy or some medical reason for special snacks or food. If you have special medicines, always take them with you because the show has very little medicines, other than something for a headache.
There are some do’s and don’t’s that we should mention. First, never take a camera inside a show. There may be shows that allow them on special events; check with the show promoters first. Whenever you go to a show and take children, discuss proper manners while they are in a show. They should not pick up guns and items there because most of the items are very expensive. Also, the venders with guns realize that you have to be 21-years-old to purchase a handgun in the first place. For the adults that have very little experience, always handle firearms with care. I also ask for permission before picking up a firearm. The venders like this. I will caution you on dry-firing, or pulling the trigger on the guns, as this could cause damage on some guns. I witnessed a man one time at a show that picked up this beautiful pistol and the first thing he did was to open the cylinder and proceed to spin it. The owner just about went ballistic. I believe just plain common sense and courtesy will go a long way at gun shows.
If you intend to make a purchase, remember that you can purchase both pistols and long guns if you are in your own home state. If you are out of state, you can purchase long guns only. There are special laws and rules that apply to purchasing firearms out of state; you can seek help from a federal licensed dealer at the shows you attend.
Always go by the law wherever you are and it will make your first gun show visit a fun one. I enjoy my gun show visits, and so should you; so plan a trip to a gun show soon.
Roger Sherrill lives in Ringgold. He can be reached at email@example.com.