MARIETTA - An estimated $2,000 has been raised for the Boys and Girls Club of Washington County, thanks to the hundreds of people who attended this weekend's gun show at American Legion Post 64 in Marietta.
"This was our inaugural gun show to benefit the club, and it's been successful enough that we're planning another next year," said Sam Anderson, director of the Boys and Girls Club.
The gun show ran both Saturday and Sunday at the post at Eighth and Wooster streets, with all proceeds going to the Boys and Girls Club with facilities located at 307 Lancaster St. in Marietta.
Photo by Sam Shawver
Danny Rymer, left, of Marietta, looks over a couple of handguns, assisted by Felicia Nonnenmacher of Whipple on Sunday during this weekend’s inaugural gun show to benefit the Boys and Girls Club of Washington County.
Earl Craddock, of Belpre, was one of several firearms enthusiasts who displayed rifles, pistols and related paraphernalia during the weekend show.
"This is the first gun show I've ever done, but I knew the money was going to a good cause," he said. "I trade guns a lot, it's more of a hobby for me. But I did sell four this weekend."
Keith Medley, of Marietta, travels to gun shows all over Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky.
"For a first-time show this one has generated a lot of traffic," he said. "We heard there were at least 400 people who came through the door on Saturday. And this fundraiser is important for the Boys and Girls Club."
Medley not only collects firearms, but he also likes shooting them, often taking his 10-year-old grandson, Braden Medley, along.
"It's a nice hobby that we both enjoy," Keith said.
Also displaying guns and other items during the event were Felicia and Diana Nonnenmacher, with the Magnum Get Your Shot On LLC firearms business in Whipple.
"One of our customers told us about this gun show last week, so we called to see if we could be part of it," Diana said. "We just pulled a sampling from our inventory and brought a variety of guns to the show. And we would absolutely come back if they decide to have another show next year."
Lifelong gun collector Dick Dieringer, of Marietta, was also selling and trading during the weekend show.
"It's been a fantastic weekend for me," he said. "I frequent a lot of gun shows, and I'm very impressed by this first-time event."
Dieringer said the gun show had a dual purpose for him.
"I enjoy meeting other gun collectors, but I'm also proud to support the Boys and Girls Club," he said.
Anderson said this year's inaugural show turned out better than expected, and the club can always use the funds.
"We have a $225,000 annual budget to support, and utilities alone cost us about $2,000 a month," she said. "So the gun show proceeds are welcome."
Anderson added that between 65 and 75 children make use of the Boys and Girls Club's after-school program every day, and snacks to feed those kids cost around $10,000 a year.
"This show has been so successful we're considering putting on two next year, one in the spring and another in the fall," she said.