Great American Outdoor Show opens tomorrow in Harrisburg

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | Feb 3, 2017 4:25 AM

Photo by Ben Allen/witf

(Harrisburg) -- An event that bills itself as the world's largest outdoor show opens up Saturday in Harrisburg.

The NRA expects 200,000 people to visit the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg.

This is the fourth year the NRA is running the Great American Outdoor Show, after the previous operator faced a boycott when it wanted to ban certain guns after the Sandy Hook school shooting.

The gun rights group's Jason Brown says the event is starting to become a national event.

People from 47 states attended last year, and hotel room occupany rates have jumped up 19 percent since the NRA took over its operation.

Brown says they're always looking to add more talent to draw even more people.

"We want our guests that come to this show, whether they're people coming to enjoy the show or exhibitors, we want everyone to be happy with it. We want them to continue to come out, and make this show into a family tradition, as it has been for so many people," says Brown.

The show includes 1,100 exhibitors, with areas for shooting sports, archery, boats, fishing and more.

"I think it's important to understand that we can look at numbers all day, but the real gauge of success is how people respond to the show. Are people happy to come? Did people come out and enjoy what they're seeing?"

It runs through the 12th.

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