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Conway Gun Show Draws Big Crowd

Hundreds of vendors offering thousands of customers all types of guns, knives, ammo, and accessories over the weekend at the Gun Show in Conway.
CONWAY- Hundreds of vendors offering thousands of customers all types of guns, knives, ammo, and accessories over the weekend at the Gun Show in Conway.

9-year-old Gavin Hile helps sell guns at his parents booth. "I got a BB gun when I was 4."

He enjoys shooting and admits he's pretty good at it. "I have an M4-22."

Gavin says he'd really like an AK-47, but he doesn't think he'll get one. At his age, he's not much into politics, but he knows those types of guns might not be around much longer because of incidents like the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. Gavin says it makes him sad, and he's disappointed when people misuse weapons he's grown up learning to respect. "They're ruining guns."

Perhaps that's one reason why gun shows like the one in Conway are so popular. Gun Show Promoter Stephanie Ellis says ammo is pretty popular right now.

It's one stop shopping for hard to find, specialty items, and a large variety of custom accessories. Tom Powers is a vendor who says the customers come curious, asking a lot of questions. "There's a lot of information searching going on."

Powers sets up booths at 42 gun shows a year, catering to long-time shooters and collectors typically looking for a unique piece to add to their collection. Lately, he says the crowd is different. "The political hype right now increases interest in people who have never been to a gun show before."

Powers says he sees the younger generation interested in guns. He says there's a need for more responsible gun owners. "I think there's a great deal of concern."

Law abiding citizens Powers says shouldn't be punished because of the actions of a few. "If more sane people were armed, crazy people wouldn't get off more shots."

Gavin Hile couldn't agree more. "I think people should have them for protection, and shooting and hunting. That's the only thing I think they should have them for."

Protection against those who would try to do harm. "Everybody should have at least one gun, at least."

The next gun show in Conway is June 1st and 2nd.
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