TAKE A SHOT — Shown is a collection of firearms on display at the Niagara Frontier Gun Collectors show, held in Springville Nov. 10 and 11. Photos by Jeff Martin.
SPRINGVILLE — During the Niagara Frontier Gun Collectors show, held Nov. 10 and 11 in Springville, Bruce Johnston, who has been promoting gun shows throughout New York for 17 years, said the re-election of President Barack Obama on Nov. 6 got many local people talking.
Stories and opinions were exchanged by vendors who set up inside the Springville Volunteer Fire Department, to sell their wares and talk politics.
“People are worried about what [Obama is] going to do, second term,” Johnston said.
While there has been no decision made in Washington D.C. about what, if any, firearm legislation may be introduced during Obama’s second term, many buyers and collectors said that they are not going to wait around to find out.
RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS — Conrad Cote of Cote Supply in Pittsford set up for the Niagara Frontier Gun Collectors show in Springville, held Nov. 10 and 11.
Conrad Cote of Cote Supply, a Pittsford, N.Y. seller, who has been in the business for 25 years, said there was a lot of talk, during the show, about what Obama’s plans may be.
“Sales have gone up drastically,” he said. “People see crime rising [and] government not taking care of them. They see a new world forming. They see freedoms being lost.”
On Nov. 7, the day following the United States presidential election, firearm distributor Smith & Wesson®’s stock rose 9.6 percent, according to The Wall Street Journal. Stock in firearm manufacturer Sturm Ruger® & Co. also rose, by 6.8 percent.
In addition, Cote said that he has been told that more and more women are obtaining gun permits.
Johnston said that a few buyers showed up, during the weekend, to purchase military assault weapons. “Maybe it was because of what was said,” Johnston said, referring to Obama’s comment during a campaign debate about reinstating a ban on military assault weapons. The ban had expired in 2004.
Many gun show attendees picked up ammunition, woodchuck guns and shotguns.
“We had a guy come in, with his granddaughter, and he bought her first .22, single bolt shotgun, and she was just smiling, ear to ear,” Johnston said. “That makes me happy.”
Johnston noted that being portrayed as a paranoid and violent gun owner upsets him. “People have this image of people who purchase guns and, most of the time, those impressions are wrong,” he said.
Johnston, a self-proclaimed Civil War buff who collects antique guns, said that most, if not all, of the shows he has promoted, include a supply of flint lock muskets and other antique pieces. “There’s a lot of history at these shows,” he said.
Johnston added that many who attend gun shows come for specialty knives and archery supplies.
SETTING UP — Ron Quaranta of We Bee Barrels, of Batavia attended the gun show in Springville, last weekend.
Ron Quaranta, who owns We Be Barrels, said that many attendees come to gun shows, like the one held in Springville, looking for specific items, like one of the hundreds of gun barrels he sells.
“They pass me by if a barrel isn’t what they’re looking for,” he said. “But a lot of guys follow me to shows. I got what they need.”
Upcoming Niagara Frontier Gun Collectors are listed at www.nfcshows.com.