May 15, 1995 in Nation/World

A Pistol-Packin’ Mom’s Day At Post Falls Firearms Show ‘Promoting Family Unity,’ Organizers Admit Women Free

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Mother’s Day in North Idaho: food, family and, for some, firearms.

Cars filled the National Guard Armory parking lot in Post Falls on Sunday as gun aficionados turned out for the Post Falls Kiwanis Mother’s Day gun show.

Admission was $3.50, but mothers - all women, in fact - got in for free.

“We’re getting women that would otherwise have stayed home,” said organizer Doug Wolf. “We’re promoting family unity, I guess you’d say.”

Nearly 80 gun dealers were on hand, their tables filled with boltaction rifles, semiautomatics, shotguns, pistols and revolvers. There also was a lot of gun paraphernalia, including ammunition clips, stocks, scopes and cases.

“You would never think there’d be so many guns,” said Joan Biggerstaff of Spokane, looking around. She and her family were en route to a go-cart track in Post Falls when they saw a sign for the gun show.

A few tables away, Dick Nelson, of Blanchard, Idaho, was selling shells and reloading equipment.

“My wife likes to hunt and shoot,” he said. “Some people like to golf.

We don’t like to golf.” His wife was selling jewelry at the next table.

“Some women will go to a gun show on Mother’s Day - if they’re outdoorsy,” said Lorraine Nelson.

“In the bigger cities, it’s a different type of people. Here, it’s kind of easygoing. We were raised with guns.”

Her six children learned to shoot around the ages of 9 or 10, she said.

“There’s a lot of fanatics, but you have to teach your family to use guns properly,” she said.

“My children are teaching their children.”

Dealer Jerry Rawley, of Priest River, Idaho, had dozens of rifles spread over several tables.

His business card gets right to the point.

“Guns guns guns guns guns guns,” it reads.

“I think we’re more down to earth and family-oriented,” he said, sipping a Dairy Queen soda.

“In the big city, a lot of people have lost touch. They sit down and watch TV together.

“But hunting and fishing and target shooting are things we do together,” he said. “Guns are a part of our life in Idaho.”

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