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Radio Smart Talk for Monday, January 28:
The debate over guns has been raging since the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in December. Not being able to see eye-to-eye on an issue related to guns claimed one of Central Pennsylvania's most popular events this week.
The Eastern Sports and Outdoors Show was scheduled to begin February 2 -- next Saturday -- at the Pennsylvania State Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg and run until February 10. Hundreds of thousands of people normally attend from all over the East Coast and spend millions of dollars in the local economy.
Earlier this month, the show's organizer -- Reed Exhibitions -- decided to prohibit the sale of "modern sporting rifles" or what many people call military style assault rifles, as well as high capacity ammunition magazines. Reed said in a statement that, "“In the current climate, we felt that the presence of MSRs would distract from the theme of hunting and fishing, disrupting the broader experience of our guests. This was intended simply as a product decision, of the type event organizers need to make every day."
Exhibitors at the show did not react well to being told they couldn't display or sell the weapons. More than 300 decided to boycott the event, saying they wouldn't support what they felt was an infringement on theirs and their customers' Second Amendment right to bear arms.
Many can't decide whether the boycott and subsequent postponement of the outdoors show is a victory or defeat.
On Monday's Radio Smart Talk, we'll address the circumstances that led to the postponement and the economic impact on the region.
Appearing on the program will be Lancaster Newspapers Outdoors Writer P.J. Reilly, Joe Keffer, owner of the Sportsman Shop in New Holland, one of the exhibitors who was boycotting the show, and Sharon Altland of the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau.
Listen to the program:
Post your questions and comments below.
Sharon Altland, director of sales for the Hershey/Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau, discusses the economic impact of postponing the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show.
Rick Dunlap, director of communications for the Hershey/Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau, weighs in on Radio Smart Talk.
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