Attendance down at expo; Guns big draw for event

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 1, 2014

    Tim Bradley shoots a head of cabbage during last weekend's sportsman's expo.

Tim Bradley shoots a head of cabbage during last weekend’s sportsman’s expo.

The third annual Covington Sportsman’s Expo wrapped up Sunday with a bang, literally, according to organizer and CEO of Willow Outdoors, LLC, Harold Barnes.

“We filled up every shooting schedule that we had,” Barnes said. “We shot more ammo than last year. We gave away $3,000 worth of guns and handmade knives. All total, there was somewhere around 5,000 rounds of ammo shot over the weekend.”

While overall attendance was down for this year’s expo, Barnes said the increased interest in guns was important because part of the event’s mission is to teach gun safety and proper firing techniques, as well as to reinforce the importance of the Second Amendment right to bear arms. Barnes added that many of those firing guns over the weekend were doing so for the first time.

“They received a lot of training and all that good stuff,” he said. “The ones that came had a really good time.”

Barnes also reported an increase in gun sales for the vendors carrying firearms, but added there were plenty of non-gun related events also available at this year’s expo, including a wide variety of shows, musical performances, food, children’s games and an array of other vendors.

This weekend’s shows included a lively performance by the stars of CMT’s “Gator 911” that included a chance for some hands-on activities with a bevy of large and small reptiles, as well as shooting seminars by Byron Ferguson, of “Impossible Shots.”