April 25, 2007

Dear Members and Exhibitors,

Is spring really here? Or are we experiencing that “global warming” phenomenon that brought early buds in January, miserably cold weather in February, a freak March snow storm that nearly ruined our Saratoga Springs Arms Fair and then April snow storms, massive flooding, a record warm day and now cold again.  Has spring really sprung or will we miss summer and see a cold spell for our August Saratoga Arms Fair?  So far this year’s weather has been crazy.  

But, even if the Artic polar bears have to swim a longer distance between icebergs -- life goes on.  We who buy and sell guns still need to get out and about.  Our job at NEACA headquarters, in glorious downtown Mechanicville, is to bring you, the general public, and other dealers together to deal with guns.  We’ve got some shows you might want to attend and even another sale at our own location. 

Our public attendance in March at Saratoga was the reverse of usual.  A fairly full show, the weather did scare a few dealers to cancel, but we managed to make it work and the crowd on Sunday nearly made up for only a thousand people on Saturday.  Really, the big problem was parking -- not the traveling. All history now, August 3, 4 and 5 is our next Saratoga Arms Fair and I think the folks who couldn’t get out in March will have pent up emotions to come see us in the summer.  We’ve had loads of phone calls inquiring about our next Saratoga show date.  The flier is enclosed but remember to find a hotel early.  Saratoga is always the place to be and summer time is fun time with the Racino and Harness Track plus the thoroughbred Flat Track and Polo.  A busy, busy place where the streets are crowded through midnight.

Even with the snowstorm on Friday evening and naturally all the hype that went with it from the weather forecasters who managed to scare a good deal of the public plus our dealers, overall the show was very good. Cathy and I lost money from admissions naturally and there weren’t the usual amount of people so the ratio of public to dealers was off but some of the dealers did very well.  We also took a lot of new memberships and after the show we still had lots of calls and people stopping at the shop inquiring about our next event.  The snow certainly took its toll and this was the first time in March in over 20 years that weather was a factor.  One of the disappointing facts was that Cathy did a lot more advertising and we sent out just under 10,000 post cards and perhaps that’s why the show was still good but it certainly was down.  We have had a lot of new inquiries about our shows from other dealers and August should prove to be a very good event.

Our fall show will be on October 12, 13 and 14 as it was last year and we have scheduled a new show just before Christmas at Saratoga on December 21, 22 and 23.  We had one at the same time back at the turn of the century and it went really well.  More to follow on that show.  If postal weight allows we are also including the October flier.  However, we will not assign any table locations for that show until after our August event. Dealers at the August Arms Fair will have preference for the following show.  Also our knife-dealing friends from NCCA will again be invited in October.

We are also returning to Herkimer at the VFW on Mohawk Street, flier enclosed, on May 18, 19 and 20 and will probably schedule another in the fall.  I’ve always enjoyed our little show there except for the motel situation.  This time we have managed to get a room at the Herkimer Motel, behind Denny’s and they still have a few rooms.  Call 315-866-0490 for reservations.  Lots of gun history in that area as well as our country’s historical past from the French and Indian War forward.  Stuff always comes in and I always sell guns.

Plattsburgh is back on our schedule too.  Instead of the K of C Hall on Boynton Avenue, which was sold and converted to something else, we are right next door at the VFW #125 where the friends of NRA dinner is also held. The date is June 1, 2 and 3 and our flier is enclosed.  We’ve had some very productive shows in Plattsburgh and there is a variety of good motels nearby. 

If you folks know about those computer things then you can actually go “on line” and download by PDF all of our fliers, check on motels and restaurants or even find a map to get where you want to go.  Our website at NEACA.com has a lot of information, news, and guns and stuff for sale.  Soon we will announce a new sale at our Hudson River Trading Company store on May 11 and 12, the Friday and Saturday before Mothers’ Day.  We had about 150 people show up for our last one but didn’t even make a dent!  Of course, we also had a snowstorm on the first day of our sale.  God is testing me! 

With all the new gun laws that are being introduced in our New York State Assembly by the Democrats and now with Elliot Spitzer as Governor, one never knows what the morrow may bring.  Watch your NRA –ILA alerts and the local papers for laws being proposed and do your part by sending a letter or making a phone call to Albany expressing your concern.  My belief, no matter what New York State Senator Schumer has to say about his “believing in the second amendment rights”, I wouldn’t trust him one iota.  And when he and Clinton and Sheldon Silver get together it should run shivers up your spine.  Shiver my timbers with Spitzer, Silver and Schumer at the helm!

And with that, happy sailing or as ‘ol Roy used to say “Happy trails to you, until we meet again.”   In Herkimer, Plattsburgh and Saratoga.       


Cathy & Dave Petronis