Gun community still intact despite recent gun controversy

RAPID CITY S.D. (KEVN) - Bruce Deddic, a private collector & seller, says "Sell trade, talk guns, it's a great part of the shooting community and it is a great opportunity for like-minded people to be able to socialize about something we love. "

That is what the Dakota Territory Gun Show is all about. It is an event that sees nearly 3000 gun enthusiasts walk through the doors and them
walking around to scope out what is old, what is new and to simply learn more about the objects they're shopping for.

Stan Wahl, a private seller, says "I never go to a gun show that I don't learn something so it's always an education."

Promoting the 2nd Amendment freedoms for the firearm community and the recent controversy surrounding gun rights, this event, vendors say, is the perfect opportunity to learn about the hands their guns are getting into.

Deddic says, "if you know your local community well, and you're only willing to deal with people that you have a history with, you're not going to generally run into problems with somebody that's using a firearm for illegal purposes."

Despite what conversations about change might look like, some say it was more about the people gathering to share something they carry close to their hearts.

Wahl says, "Alot of people are hobbyists, they buy them because they are collectors of Smith & Wesson or Colt or something so I don't know that conditions have all that much to do with it, it's just the love of the guns.

For those teaching and introducing new things into the industry, Paul Sheets, operator of Black Hills Gear, says "the enjoyment I get out of shooting sports is seeing the young kids shoot their first deer or turkey or some of the elder folks that I take out that haven't been around for a long time because they have been retired and they're coaches and they are traveling around and I'll take them out. Just seeing the enjoyment on their face blesses me and that's what I do."

The Gun Show will continue Sunday, March 15 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and tickets are $5. All proceeds from the event are donated to local charities that are firearm related within the Dakotas.