Successful Sportsman’s Show Demonstrates Continued Enthusiasm for the Outdoors
Staff members and volunteers from The Maine Sportsman and Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine are celebrating the success and growth of our jointly-produced, annual three-day extravaganza that is the State of Maine Sportsman’s Show. The event, which attracted thousands of attendees, featured 180 vendors and exhibitors, and offered 120 different seminars.
Older folks gathered and reminisced. Young couples brought infants, toddlers, pre-teens and teens – and not one of the teens spent time at the Augusta Civic Center playing video games on their smart phone.
Turkey callers, hunting dogs in the NAVHDA room, ATVs, boats and motors, fly tyers, big retailers, mom-and-pops – a heartening sight for those who predict that couch potatoes will soon take over the world.
Governor Janet Mills toured the entire arena, shaking hands, accepting congratulations, checking out trout flies (she’s an avid fly fisher) and even listening to the “Tirdy Works” moose-poop ladies give their spirited sales pitch. Steve Abbott, chief of staff for US Senator Susan Collins, stopped in to visit with his brother Scott, who was manning the Maine Bowhunters Association booth. And skilled outdoor photographer (and recent author – see his 2018 A Senator’s Eye: Celebrating Maine, Washington, and the Joys of Scraping the Windshield) U.S. Sen. Angus King put in an enthusiastic appearance.
This year’s event was anchored by Sunday’s official Maine State Surplus Firearms Auction, which exceeded expectations and featured standing room-only, non-stop bidding action.
Skilled Mainers filled the Art Room with painting, photography and carvings. Youngsters in the “KidZone” room caught trout, shot compound bows and – under the watchful eye of Maine Audubon staffers – pulled mouse bones out of barn owl pellets.
State and federal government agencies put in a strong showing, including our friends at DIF&W, and U.S. Border Patrol personnel.
Local sporting clubs sold chances for choice firearms, providing a much-needed fundraising boost. Health organizations taught avoidance and treatment of tick-borne diseases, and native fish advocates lobbied for keeping northern ponds free of invasive species. Guides and outfitters from Maine, Canada and Upstate New York signed up new and returning customers, and knife-makers displayed their wares.
But most important, those in attendance renewed old acquaintances and made new friends. Folks had an opportunity to speak the language of the outdoors, and share their enthusiasm for the natural features of our great state that keep us here and attract others from far away.
The show was a festival of positive energy – and a great way to celebrate our survival of another long winter and our optimism and enthusiasm for the coming warming weather.
Thanks to all of you readers who stopped by to greet our writers at the Maine Sportsman booth, whether it was to renew or extend subscriptions, or to show us of photos of your latest outdoor adventures. We’ll see you all at the 40th edition of the State of Maine Sportsman’s Show next year!
- VENDORS WANTED!
- Seminar Schedule
- Art & Photography Contest
- Game Camera Contest
- Youth Turkey Calling Contest
- Vendor List
- Gun Auction List
- Kid Zone
- Where to Stay
ONLY 8 BOOTHS LEFT FOR 2019!
You can download the Exhibitor Application by clicking the button below:
For more info, contact Linda at (207) 622-4242
You can download the 2019 Seminar Schedule by clicking the link below:
Art & Photography Contest
Thanks for your interest in our art and photography contest! You can view or download the official rules by clicking the button below:
Game Camera Contest
Thanks for your interest in our game camera contest! You can view or download the official rules by clicking the button below:
Youth Turkey Calling Contest
Click here to check out an awesome article and video about last year’s Youth Turkey Calling Contest!
Check out which vendors will be coming to the show!
Gun Auction List
Here is a list of guns set to be auctioned off at the annual State of Maine Gun Auction on Sunday, March 31st at 12PM!
This list is informational only and is not complete. Do not rely on this list for accuracy. Items may not be auctioned off in this order. A picture ID is required for a background check. The ID must bear the transferee’s name and photograph, must have been issued by a governmental entity, and must be of a type intended or commonly accepted for identification purposes.