What else do I love about SHOT? The people. SHOT Show is always packed with the grassroots heroes of our industry otherwise known as the gun and gear dealers, the many manufacturing and sales reps, and, of course, members of the media. You never know who you are going to run into. In a lot of ways it’s like a four day happy hour! Continuing with my favorite moments from SHOT, this post is all about just some of the über cool people at the show…
All the folks I have had the pleasure to meet from NRA News are super nice. But just how far does “super nice” go when you’re standing there with a big camera lens right in front of your face that resembles a portal into the abyss? Well, Cam Edwards, Cameron Gray and John Popp have mad skills for getting people to chat with them even in the presence of the soul sucking camera. I am always hard on myself for these types of appearances, but these guys are truly pros and every time I have had the chance to talk with them, it has been so comfortable.
Case in point, at SHOT Show I had the opportunity to sit down with talented women from Women’s Outdoor News – Barb Baird, Mia Anstine and Sara Ahrens. We were on to talk with Cam Edwards about women and the industry. With each of us coming from different backgrounds, we were able to relate to our areas of expertise. Cam expertly lead the discussion, allowing us to share our experiences with dedicated members of the NRA in such a fun way. After that, a follow up interview on SHOOT with Cameron Gray in the hallway and I was all smiles heading to my next booth appearance.
Another master of the interview, I completely SCORED when I was able to sit down with Tom Gresham, LIVE and right on the show floor in the Crimson Trace booth to talk about SHOOT. Not only was it just an amazing way to share the book and its SHOT Show debut, but I love how Tom asks questions on Gun Talk Radio. He really has understanding of what his listeners want to hear and so though it wasn’t a traditional call in show, he steered our conversation in a way that we were able to share the experiences listeners can relate to. I just love that! Here’s a link to the entire clip and listen for me to come on at 33:36.
If you follow me on facebook or twitter, you probably know that I am a big Top Shot on History Channel fan. A closet reality TV show junkie, I actually find the drama entertaining, but the best part of the show for me has to be the challenges. After I watch an episode, I am just filled with envy. I so want to try every one of ’em – yes even rock throwing!
I am also a Colby Donaldson fan. Last year, my friend and Benelli teammate Taran Butler introduced me to him. Since then I have had the chance to chat with him a few more times at various trade shows and such. He is so friendly and you can just tell he loves to be able to work on a show that features guns and shooting in such a huge way. Talk about a fav moment at the show – when I was at the Smith & Wesson booth Colby popped in to say hello… to meeee! It was one of those OMGosh-how-awesome-is-this moments!
One thing that always strikes me about SHOT is how the tip top tier of management, big time stock holders and company exec’s are right there on the show floor, hanging out and contributing in such a personal and personable way. That’s huge! Show participants could actually talk with Ginger Chandler, Vice President of New Product Development at Smith & Wesson about the S&W M&P. They could approach Stephen McKelvain, Vice President of Marketing & Communications at Benelli USA, with their marketing and branding questions. They might have even had their photo snapped by Chris Dolnak, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at NSSF, who expertly demonstrated that it is indeed possible to tweet, walk and talk all at the same time.
For me personally, being able to spend time with my sponsors and teammates is a major highlight. (More about that here.) Despite bouncing around every one to two hours, I was so happy to run into good friends like Jay Christy from my days at the AMU, Todd Green from Pistol-Training.com, and so many fun fellow lady shooters who I won’t name for their privacy, but they know who they are! It was wonderful to be able to catch up with Kathryn Mennone from Skyhorse Publishing at the SHOOT signings. I was also able to share SHOT Show with my husband which made it REALLY SPECIAL
Meeting and talking with those who are passionate about shooting, hunting and the outdoors just further shows that the people in our industry are THE BEST.