Torrington to host Third Annual Gun Show

The Ron Gorr Memorial Arena in Torrington will hold a Gun Show for its third straight year this August 28-29. From 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday and until 3:00 pm on Sunday, vendors will be exhibiting guns and ammunition, both modern and antique as well as other hunting equipment, apparel, and related materials. This event is for serious collectors, hunting enthusiasts, hobbyists or the curious, for almost any age group or any gender.
Stan Taylor, the event organizer, anticipates that the show will continue in Torrington as an annual event. "As usual, it was sold out in March and I am still getting calls from exhibitors." With so many wanting to participate, Stan was under a bit of pressure to increase the size of the show but that would mean having to cut back on aisle room. With the present situation exhibitors have space to drive in their vehicles to load and unload their heavy wares. In its first year the event held 40 vendors with 100 tables, the following year the show was increased to 50 vendors and 115 tables. This year the number of tables was cut back to 110 tables but with pressure to increase that amount by another 40 or 50 tables. Stan will have a vendor survey completed at this year's show to see where the majority of vendors sit in regard to giving up the convenience and ease of driving in for a bigger show. For now, Stan's priorities are on promoting the event to the public and increasing the number of walk-ins. "An increase in the number of people coming to check out the show will more directly benefit the vendors." Stan is very appreciative of the help he has been getting from the Silver Willows Seniors Club in Torrington. "They happily help me out each year taking shifts at the front desk or as security. They do it in spite of how close this event is to the Jamboree and the work it takes to run that show. This year we got a few vests made that actually say security and Torrington Gun Show, so I think that means we will try to keep this as an annual event."
This year's show will have a few 'new' exhibitors and a couple of antique dealers. In the gun collecting world, guns can be considered antiques when they are only 50 to 60 years old, mainly because that age of gun is no longer made. What might surprise most people is that guns do not usually make up the largest collections. In fact ammunition cartridges that pre-date today's modern metallic self contained variety are highly sought after. "It was in the 1850's that weapon manufacturers started developing self-contained cartridges, for the 'Indian' wars in the west and the civil war. The old muzzle loaders were not very handy in battle. Cartridges were made with copper and then brass and then what we have today." For a collector the history of the cartridge or gun is extremely important. You will want to know who made it, when, in what historical period and what its quality was for that era. Stan says for that reason he and others sell a lot of reference books on the subject, - the history of guns and on the collecting of them.
These exhibitors are happy to drive two or hours hours or even more to a show, as much for the camaraderie of fellow enthusiasts than for anything they sell or trade. "It is a lot of fun and a great hobby," says Stan. "We have them coming from Vancouver, Chilliwack, Kamloops, Cranbrook, Grande Prairie, all over Alberta, and even from Saskatchewan. When you know how far these enthusiasts are willing to drive, Torrington is actually a good Alberta location being only an easy one to two hours from Calgary, Red Deer, or Edmonton."
The entrance fee is only $5, and free to children 12 and under that are in the company of an adult. The arena snack bar will be open.