Mike Huckabee at the NRA Convention in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - The final speaker at last Saturday night's Celebration of American Values Freedom Event during the NRA Annual Meeting was longtime NRA member and active Second Amendment supporter Governor Mike Huckabee.

Huckabee began the evening with telling the crowd about how his love of firearms began. Having a father and grandfather who were both "gun clingers" meant his family raised him from an early age to understand that a gun was not a toy — the same way most people starts out.

Learning to shoot with an old 16-gauge shotgun that he said was probably worth less than its instruction booklet, Huckabee collected pop bottles as a young boy until he had saved up enough for a single-shot .22 caliber rifle that "did a lot of squirrel hunting in South Arkansas," Huckabee boasted. As he grew older, he graduated from squirrel hunting and is now an avid duck and turkey hunter.


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - There are always more photos from the collection we assembled during the s National Rifle Association's 140th Annual Meetings and Exhibits in Pittsburgh last week. This particular selection of photos are from the second exhibit hall, which was located on the street-level floor of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

Jeff Foxworthy at the NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Comedian Jeff Foxworthy took the stage to crack some jokes last Saturday night at the Celebration of American Values Freedom Experience during the NRA Annual Meeting & Exhibits in Pittsburgh.

The host of the hit TV game show Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader? and star of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour came out to an excited crowd that had gathered to hear speeches later that evening by ardent Second Amendment supporters at the Consol Energy Center, home of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Foxworthy, who had been at the arena the previous weekend filming a concert movie with pals Bill Engvall and Larry the Cable Guy, told the crowd “Last Friday night when I looked out I saw an audience. Tonight when I look out I see patriots." After the applause died down he added "It’s an honor to be here in front of you.”


Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld signing his new autobiography, Known and Unknown: A Memoir, at the NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh on NRAblogPittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Donald Rumsfeld, two-time former Secretary of Defense, made an appearance at the NRA Annual Meeting & Exhibits in Pittsburgh last week to sign copies of his autobiography Known and Unknown: A Memoir.

Released this past winter, the book follows Rumsfeld from his childhood in Illinois to his final days in the George W. Bush Administration.

Rumsfeld's political career began when, after a three year stint as a naval aviator, he took jobs working in Congress and the White House before getting elected to the U.S. House of Representatives at the age of 30. A successful Congressman who sat on many committees, Rumsfeld went on to serve four terms for Illinois' 13th congressional district before resigning to take a post in the Nixon Administration.


Ted Nugent on stage at the NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on NRAblogPittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Ted Nugent stepped on stage during the NRA's Annual Meetings and Exhibits on Sunday, May 1, at 12:30 p.m. eastern time. And just just like every time the Motor City Madman walks into a room ... the crowd went wild.

"You can't get better than Ted," said a New Jersey man. "I've first saw him in concert over 30 years ago. A guy like him, an entertainer, being a hunter too ... well that's just unbelievable."

While regaling stories of the road, encounters with anti-hunters, and time back home on the ranch, Ted continued to pound on the point of membership.

"You can't be in my band and not be a current NRA member," said Nugent to great applause. "You can't drive my bus on tour if you're not a NRA member, even if you want to book a camp with Sunrise Safaris; my guys will tell you to keep your money if you're not a NRA member."


Top Shot Season 2 runner up Brian Zins stops by the NRA's Competitive Shooting booth to say hi to Woody Arenas and Dot Priesman at Annual Meeting on NRAblog

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - During the Annual Meeting & Exhibits, NRA's Competitive Shooting booth gave away bags of prizes at 4:00 p.m. every day.

Staff spoke with attendees and answered questions about competitions like the National Championships at Camp Perry and the Bianchi Cup.

When it came time to raffle off the prizes, crowds gathered to hear if they had won.

Crosman airguns, books on Camp Perry, Pelican cases, Sinclair giftcards and pins from Northwest Territorial Mint were just some of the prizes to be had.


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - The 2011 NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh was a huge success. Among the great events and activities throughout the weekend were the exhibit halls on the first and second floors of the convention center. Here are some photos of what the halls looked like while NRABlog walked through the isles yesterday.

Austin Dillon's #3 camping world racing truck at the NRA Annual Meeting on NRAblog

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - As General Operations Executive Director Kayne Robinson announced Saturday night at the Celebration of American Values Freedom Experience, Johnny Morris' #39 car, driven by Ryan Newman, will appear at the Dayton 500 colored with NRA logos and stamps. But it doesn't stop there. Not only will the NRA be making a splash on the NASCAR circuit, but you'll be seeing us in the Camping World Truck Series.

Just keep an eye out as Austin Dillon, grandson of NRA Board member Richard Childress, will be driving the #3 truck with Bass Pro Shops on the front and NRA on back and sides. First seen in Pittsburgh during the NRA's 140th Annual Meetings and Exhibits, this is the second racing vehicle that will soon be displaying the NRA logo and stamp on a track near you.

The Swiss Gun Collectors Association donates a rifle to the National Firearms Museum

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - This past Saturday during the NRA Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh, the National Firearms Museum was able to add one more gun to its collection due to a generous donation from The Swiss Gun Collectors Association.

With a booth set up in the exhibit hall on the first floor, the SGCA featured an exhibit on Guns of the Swiss Militia from which the donation came.

A beautiful K31 was donated to Senior Curator Phil Schreier by Max Hausmann of the SGCA. The rifle will make a great addition to the museum's prestigious display of firearms throughout the ages.


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