Four days at the 'Big Show'

Spending four days covering the National Shooting Sports Foundation's Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show (SHOT) in Orlando last week was one of those "best of times worst of times" experiences. Why? With nearly 20,000 exhibitors, the array of outdoor related products that are trotted out is mind boggling. On the flipside, walking the aisles of the mammoth Orange County Convention Center's nearly million square feet of space is not for the faint-hearted or flat-footed. Comfortable footwear and a hard resolve are a must.

Each year, manufacturers and distributors use the show to unveil their newest and best products and services, and this year was no exception. My boss, Jordan Outdoor Enterprises Ltd (Realtree Camouflage), chose the event to introduce its latest camo pattern - AP-HD (All Purpose High Definition) designed to blend in well in any floral setting in any region and climate. Other companies did the same. Other the next few weeks, I'll attempt to cover those that might be of interest and use to our local outdoor enthusiasts. T

his year saw the Law Enforcement Section which is primarily made up of police, military and security gear grow by as much as 200 percent. Next year's show will be in Las Vegas and that section will be even larger. The law enforcement section alone has already sold 15 percent more floor space than the 100,000 square feet it occupied this year. Possibly a sign of post nine-eleven and Homeland Security's impact? Women represent a growing legion in the shooting and hunting field, and that was not missed by show exhibitors this year. Foxy Huntress LLC, the industry's most unique line of women's hunting and safari chic apparel, showcased three new additions to its collection during a press briefing. "Each piece introduced was based on customer suggestions and needs," said Shelah Zmigrosky, owner and president of Foxy Huntress. "I listen to the women who hunt and provide exactly what they want. For instance, women in Wisconsin said their state requires Blaze Orange in their Upland Suit and now Foxy Huntress offers it" Wolverine Boot displayed its new Canyon lace-up and classic Wellington style boots. Both have breathable GORE-TEX(r) waterproof lining that lets moisture out but not in, keeping feet dry in rain, snow or sleet. This boots' 40 grams of Thinsulate(tm) Ultra insulation helps hunters stay warm as temperatures drop. Features a waterproof Nubuck leather and Cordura(r) upper in two camo patterns. Compression-molded EVA midsole with camo wrap and Wolverine rubber lug outsole provide comfort and durability for many hunting seasons to come. Look Ma, laces or no laces your choice.

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