Orlando gun show sales reach record amidst control debate

8,000 people attend 1st day of gun show, organizers say

ORLANDO, Fla. - Nearly 8,000 people attended the first day of the Florida Gun Shows' exhibition this weekend in Orlando, according to event organizers.

Crowds broke records on Saturday, and organizers said it's possible they'll see even larger numbers of gun enthusiasts before the weekend ends.

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Hundreds of gun buyers took vouchers that would allow them to return on Sunday  because it was difficult to get into Saturday's events.

"[Gun enthusiasts] are buying and they're buying as fast as they can get them," said Victor Bean, promoter for Florida Gun Shows.  "We've had some exhibitors who had to cancel because they didn't have any inventory from their gun shops."

Organizers and gun owners said there's an overwhelming feeling that certain guns will not be available soon.

"They're afraid they'll lose their gun rights, their Second Amendment rights," said gun dealer Dan Derringer, of Lakeland. "They want to get a gun, and, hopefully they'll be grandfathered in.  If [President Barack] Obama makes any changes, they'll be covered."

The rush to load up on guns and accessories comes just as the Obama administration is expected to unveil possible limitations, such as including a ban on assault rifles and high-capacity clips allowing dozens of bullets to be fired in seconds.

Nationally, the Federal Bureau of Investigations has capped off a record month of a record year of background checks on potential gun buyers. According to FBI statistics, gun dealers ordered almost 2.8 million background checks in December.

In some states, buyers at gun shows are exempt from laws that require background checks to purchase a gun if they buy from private citizens, but event organizers said at the Orlando gun show, checks are required.

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