MARYSVILLE — It wasn’t easy, but Marysville hosted its first-ever gun show with help from show manager Doug Kerley of Big Top Promotions.
Marysville is not a gun-friendly town, Kerley said, but hundreds of gun enthusiasts were able indulge at the gun show’s venue at Red Curtain Center July 11.
“We endeavored to persevere, and Marysville finally gave us a special permit,” Kerley said.
Other hurdles included finding a venue large enough, but he was pleased with Red Curtain.
Kerley hopes to put the show on quarterly in Marysville but not more than that.
“I don’t want to oversaturate the market,” he said.
Concerning the national debate about the Second Amendment, people should vote freedom first over safety, Kerley said.
“Every time you give up your freedom over safety, you end up with neither,” he said.
Despite the discomfort the community may feel, Kerley said that there is nothing shady about gun shows. All weapons are regulated for example.
“Guns have to be entirely inspected and zippy-tied,” he said. “We’re also into safety and education.”
The amount of unregulated weapons is about .04 percent, he said.
Lynnwood’s Big Top Promotions was also denied venues in the metro Puget Sound area. The last time they had a show in Seattle was 30 years ago, Kerley said.
Weaponry at the show ranged from historic firearms from Germany and Japanese from past wars to modern handguns and rifles.
One appreciative spectator was Carl Holsather of Tulalip, who was looking for old guns to restore.
“I think its great,” Holsather said of the event. “According to the media, it sounds like everyone hates guns.”
But gun sales have actually gone up since President’s Barack Obama’s reign. “Obama is the best gun salesmen” because pistol sales have gone dramatically up ever since he voiced gun restrictions, Kerley said.
“I’m glad they had the gun show,” Holsather added. “I’d like to see more because the closest one is usually in Monroe.”