THUNDER BAY — Hunters, trappers, and other outdoor enthusiasts are gearing up for an event that marks one of the unofficial kickoffs to hunting season.
The Thunder Bay Trappers Council will host its annual fall outdoors and gun show on Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the CLE Coliseum.
“We’ve been having this event around the start of October for years and a lot of people look forward to it,” said council vice-president Steve Gresham.
“We have people who come to get information on things, and we also have those that are coming just to pick up a new shotgun or rifle.”
The main attraction at the show is guns, with a variety of new and used firearms being sold by local dealers and those who are coming from out of town.
“We’ve got people coming from as far away as Sault Ste. Marie, along with people coming from Dryden and Kenora,” Gresham said.
“It’s a pretty important hunting show for dealers, but we also have private sellers with their guns up for sale during the event.”
In addition to firearms, there will also be trapping gear, snowmachines and quad runners for sale, along with knives, outdoor equipment and fishing gear.
There will also be booths from organizations such as the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters.
“It’s really important for us to have them there as they give a lot of information to hunters and trappers,” Gresham said.
“People want to know about different things such as if laws or regulations have changed over the course of the last year, and those organizations are there to answer any questions the public has.”
The outdoor show is also a big fundraiser for the Trapper Council, which will be donating some of the proceeds from the event to Shelter House to help with the organization's ongoing building renovations.
“My wife Patti [who is the secretary for the Trappers Council] and I have been involved since the mid 1970s, so we’ve seen things evolve quite a bit during that time,” Gresham said.
“A lot of what we do with the Trappers Council comes from workshops and that kind of thing. We also have meetings on a regular basis with the MNR and logging companies like Resolute Forest Products.”
Admission to the outdoors and gun show is $5, with kids 12 and under able to enter free if they are accompanied by an adult.
Those who are interested in registering a vendor’s table for the event can contact Patti Gresham at 807-935-2854.