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Gun show draws big crowd

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A rainy Saturday afternoon helped drive hundreds of people to drop by the fifth-annual Gun & Hobby Show held at the Fort Frances Curling Club.

Scott Stafford, who organizes the show each year with his wife, said while the show usually attracts about 600 people, this year started out exceptionally strong.

By the end of the day, more than 625 people, not including children, had turned out to check out the variety of items up for sale.

Geared towards the outdoorsman, the show initially was created so residents of Rainy River District did not have to travel far to attend a gun show.

While there are similar events in neighbouring districts, people still would have to drive a few hours in order to attend.

And interest has continued to grow since the show was first held in Barwick, when only 45 tables were set up.

This year, with 70 booths housing a variety of guns and crafts for sale or trade, there was no shortage of things to see. While adults looked at things such as antique guns and jewellery, children could be found colouring and practising with a children’s crossbow.

People also came to sell things from all over the district, as well as from as far away as Winnipeg and Thunder Bay.

Dale Chambers, meanwhile, once again helped to measure entries that came in throughout the day for the antler contest.

People then voted in two categories: full rack and “shed” antlers.

Jack Booth won first prize in the full-rack category, taking home a gun case, with second place going to Bryon Burkholder, who won a knife.

In the “shed” category, Randy Hanson took first place (winning a Winchester thermometer) while Curtis Sheloff won a jack knife for taking second place.

Everyone who voted also was entered in a draw, which saw Mel Morken’s name being drawn to win a hat.

Luke Sargeant won a toy bow-and-arrow in the children’s draw while colouring contest winners were six-year-old Carrie Sargeant and nine-year-old Lauryn Marchant, who took home a box of crayons and twistable pencil crayons, respectively.

Door prize winners were Frank Curtis (a hat) and Ernie Clinker (a Smith and Wesson sign).

The show was very successful, with vendors and spectators alike having a great day.

The event continually becomes more and more successful, and this year was no exception.

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