NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show billboard

Join NRAblog at the 2010 NRA Great American Hunting & Outdoor Show in Westminster, Maryland this weekend. NRAblog will be reporting live from the show, held at the Carroll County Ag Center, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

We join our friends from the NRA Hunters Services Division, NRAhuntersrights.org, and the NRA National Firearms Museum. You don't want to miss this show!

Featured Events & Exhibits:

  • NRA Great American Whitetail Collection
  • Bill Crutchfield Buck – Maryland’s #1 Non-Typical Whitetail Deer
  • NRA Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest
  • Lil Hunter Scavenger Hunt
  • National Firearm Museum Display: Hunting firearms used by Theodore Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, & Tom Selleck!
  • National and local seminar speakers: Ralph & Vicki Cianciarulo, Ray Eye, Sean Mann, Ken Penrod, & Pat Nolan

Regardless of whether you can make it to Maryland this weekend, stay tuned to NRAblog for the latest from this inaugural event.

The NRA’s Hunters Service Division is en route to Maryland to commence preparation for this weekend’s show. Since this is the first-ever Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show, it’s difficult to estimate attendance -- but one thing's for sure: word is getting out!

Pictured at left, NRA volunteer Sandra Aguilar spent some time promoting the show this past weekend at an event sponsored by the Chesapeake Roller Derby. The Hunters Services Division has used billboards near the show to spread the word, distributed flyers (pictured at right), and staff members put together a Facebook page promoting the weekend-long event.

"This is the first of what we hope to be many for many years to come," Manager Bob Davis said, noting that weather this weekend should be a non-issue because he and Mother Nature "have an agreement."

"This show is open to any hunter or gun owner in the country," he continued. "If you want to come in and see a couple hundred exhibitors, and book hunts from top outfitters, they're here."

If you want to fish, if you want to see some of the best fishing outfitters, or top product lines, it's all going to be at the NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show this weekend," he said.

As of last week at the 2010 SHOT Show, Davis has a big announcement regarding the Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest:

"Cabela's is the sponsor of the Mason Dixon NRA Big Buck contest, so we'll be giving awards to the largest typical and nontypical bucks from any state where you'd like to register. If you have a big whitetail you'd like scored, come on out and we'll get you scored." 

If you're able to make it to Maryland this weekend, stop by the show and say HI to both NRAblog and the Hunters Services division staff -- and don't forget about the Great American Whitetail Collection. Two dozen specially selected mounts will be on display, Davis says. "Jawdroppers is what I like to call 'em," he said.  

Bob Davis, Manager of NRA’s Hunter Services Department Bob Davis, Manager of NRA’s Hunter Services Department, will be on NRANews tonight to talk about the Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest at the National Rifle Association’s Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show in January.

The Mason/Dixon Big Contest is open to any paying attendee free of charge. Just bring any antlered deer (Whitetail, Coues, Mule, or Sika) taken in North America with a valid field or check tag attached to the mount. Sorry, but sheds will not be accepted.

NRA's Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show will be held January 29-31, 2010 at the Carroll County Agriculture Center Shipley Arena in Westminster, Maryland. Included in the event will be nationally-known hunting and outdoor personalities as well as outfitters and guides like Gsell’s Whitetail Refuge.

So tune in tonight at 9:40 p.m. to hear more about the Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show on NRANews.com or on Sirius Patriot channel 144.

The NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show is just a month away, and NRAblog has the inside scoop on the all your whitetail news for the event. A variety of impressive whitetail deer mounts will be featured at the show thanks to the Great American Whitetail Collection and the NRA Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest.

NRA’s Great American Whitetail Collection is a traveling exhibit displaying 50 of the largest and highest-scoring whitetails in the world. The massive first generation reconstructions of actual trophies have typical and non-typical bucks to awe even the most seasoned hunter.

NRA Great American Whitetail Collection Whitetails will also be featured in the NRA Mason/Dixon Big Contest, where any paying attendee can enter their impressive buck free of charge. Any antlered deer (Whitetail, Coues, Mule, or Sika) taken in North America will be accepted with a valid field or check tag attached to the mount. Sheds will not be accepted. All deer will be scored, but only free ranging deer will be awarded. Following judging and evaluation, awards will be presented for the top state entries in both the typical and non-typical categories. Top entries in the Youth and Women categories will also be awarded.

“The NRA Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest is a great way for hunters to compare their whitetail trophies to others from surrounding communities,” said Bob Davis, Manager of NRA’s Hunter Services Department. “They also have the opportunity to see how their harvest stacks up against mounts from the Great American Whitetail Collection.” 

Entries will be accepted beginning on Friday, January 29, from 3:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. and Saturday, January 30, from 9:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. All mounts entered will be displayed during the show until 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 31. At that time, all entries must be picked up with matching entry stub and valid driver’s license.

The NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show will be held January 29-31, 2010, at the Carroll County Agriculture Center - Shipley Arena in Westminster, Maryland. For more information on the NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show, booth space sales, or entering the NRA Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest, call (703) 267-1524 or send an email to rpeak@nrahq.org. Click here to view floor plans, a list of exhibitors, seminar schedule, and other show information.

The event will be held January 29-31, 2010, at the Carroll County Agriculture Center - Shipley Arena in Westminster, Maryland.

Frederick County Fair

NRA's Hunter Services Department recently attended the Frederick County Fair in Maryland to promote the NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show. The crew handed out over 9,000 promotional items and spoke to more than 17,000 fair attendees about the upcoming event. According to Hunter Services Coordinator Morris "Moe" Aguilar, the crowd was excited about an event dedicated to hunting and the outdoors. "The response was very positive and supportive by the attendees who stopped by our booth," Aguilar said.

The first NRA Great American Hunting and Outdoor Show will be held January 29-31, 2010 at the Carroll County Agriculture Center's Shipley Arena in Westminster, Maryland. The list of vendors and exhibitors continues to expand, with some of the country's leading guides and outfitters such as Gsell's Whitetail Refuge. A host of speakers will also be at the show, including Vicki and Ralph Cianciarulo of Archer's Choice Media, and Ray Eye of "Eye on the Outdoors" and Winchester's Turkey Revolution.

NRAblog already let you know that the monster bucks of the Great American Whitetail Collection would be at the show, but the NRA Mason/Dixon Big Buck Contest will also be featured. Get more information on the show and seminar speakers here, and check out the updated floorplan and list of exhibitors.

The Great American Whitetail Collection

The Great American Whitetail Collection, featuring two monster bucks from Kentucky and Illinois, was on display last weekend at the National Scholastic Sportsman Program (NSSP) National Convention and Summit Awards Banquet in Metropolis, IL. “There was a steady stream of traffic to see the whitetails," said Barry Ranney of NRA Youth Programs.

Bill Poole, Director of NRA’s Education & Training Division, is hopeful the NSSP and NRA can work together to expand YHEC. “Advisors from schools in surrounding states met to discuss implementing YHEC in their home states," said Poole.

Dave ButzNRA Board Member and former Redskins great Dave Butz was also at the weekend’s events. Butz met with attendees, signed autographs, and served as a motivational speaker at the Summit Awards Banquet.

Jointly sponsored by NRA, the Summit Awards Banquet honored outstanding NSSP Chapters, individual participants, and affiliates. NRA staff presented awards including Partner of the Year, Chapter Event of the Year, Top Gun Award and Conservationist of the Year, presented by Dave Butz.

Both Ranney and Poole expect great things from the budding NSSP partnership. As NSSP Outdoors President Cliff Flournoy put it, “We at NSSP Outdoors have surrounded ourselves with some of the best outdoor professionals and educated minds in the country to help bring education and conservation to the front of this program."

Great American Whitetail Collection booth at the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show

The Wall Street Journal has taken notice of the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show. In An Expo Where Hunters Gather,, they wrote that even in the economic downfall, business was booming last week in Pennsylvania:

If you needed a ghillie suit – the shapeless camouflage outfit that military snipers wear – or a duck blind, or a stainless-steel jalapeño griller, or a 400-square-foot prefabricated log cabin, this was the place to come. And most everything was on sale.

(Read the full article here.)

Justin McDaniel of NRAhuntersrights.org, who attended the show along with NRA Hunter Services staff and the NRA's Great American Whitetail Collection (pictured above), echoed that sentiment. “The State Farm Show Complex was virtually bursting at the seams as thousands of hunters and outdoor enthusiasts quite literally packed themselves inside the complex’s maze-like layout for the 2009 edition of the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show,” McDaniel wrote in an e-mail to NRAblog.com.

“If anyone thought the economy would keep hunters away from one of the largest outdoor shows in the country, all they had to do was witness the long lines and clogged aisles at the show this past weekend,” McDaniel continued. “By the unofficial count of the staff from the NRA Hunter Services Department, foot traffic past the Great American Hunters Tour booth averaged in the neighborhood of 60,000-70,000 hard-core hunters each day of the nine-day show.”

McDaniel, an avid hunter and outdoorsman, encourages all NRA members to take part in the annual show – one of the largest events for hunters in North America in terms of size, attendance and number of exhibitors, targeting one of the biggest outdoor markets in the country. “If you’ve never experienced THE Sportsman Show, next year’s event is slated to take place Feb. 6-14, 2010 in Harrisburg,” he writes.

But you don't need to wait until next year for another chance at a great Outdoor Show. The NRA Great American Whitetail Collection – a display of some of the most famous, highest-scoring whitetail racks in the world – will be making its next stop this Friday and Saturday (Feb. 20-21) at the Fredericksburg Outdoor Show in Fredericksburg, Va.

The State Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, was teeming with people this past weekend for the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show. Attendees packed into the show hall to see the latest in hunting, fishing, shooting and outdoor gear and services. Hunt outfitters from all over the world were on hand to promote their hunts with game ranging from alligators to zebras.

NRA Hunter Services at the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show

The NRA was also at the show with two separate booths. NRA’s Hunter Services Department manned a booth (pictured above) to showcase the Great American Whitetail Collection and promote all that NRA does for hunters. Bob Davis, Manager of Hunter Services, told NRA Blog about the traffic at the show.NRA Membership Booth at the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show “There’s been a steady flow of people, but the weekends are the busiest!” said Davis. The booth also had a variety of hunting and outdoor gear available for purchase.

Across the show was NRA’s Membership booth (pictured on the right), which was swarmed with people wanting to sign up or renew their memberships. Special membership promotions were available for the show, including a free t-shirt for anyone joining or renewing, as well as $10 off a regular one-year membership. NRA staff and local volunteers helped to sign up or renew more than 2,400 people!

Didn’t make it to the show this year? Check back with NRA Blog for more information on the 2010 Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show!

NRA Executive Director Kayne Robinson and Deputy Executive Director Andrea Cerwinske are at the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The show, which features the NRA's own Great American Whitetail Collection, concludes on Sunday.

"This cooler is exactly what you see here among the acres and acres of gear," Cerwinske (pictured below) e-mailed NRAblog.com. Kerrin Brinkman, who is also attending the show, will check in with us as well, so stay tuned!

Andrea Cerwinske pops a wheelie on an all-terrain cooler

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