NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The National Rifle Association’s annual convention kicks off in Music City Friday morning with more than 70,000 people expected to attend the weekend long event.
Approximately 550 vendors will be set up inside the Music City Center in downtown Nashville. An additional 100 exhibitors are on a waiting list to get in, according to an NRA spokesperson.
This year many of those vendors and manufacturers are trying to appeal to women. Everything from pink guns to hunting and outdoor gear designed to fit women will be available for purchase.
“We have noticed growth in the female market, so we have tried to bring out new products for women,” said Angela Harrell with Heckler & Koch.
At this weekend’s NRA show, Heckler & Koch is rolling out the smallest handgun the company offers, made specifically for ladies.
“We’re releasing the P30SK. It’s a small handgun that has interchangeable back and side panels so if a female has a small hand she can use a small panel. If she has a larger hand, she can put a larger panel on. There are 27 different configurations,” said Harrell.
Harrell has participated in NRA annual meetings for the past 10 years and says she has noticed more female attendees each year.
“I feel that more women are trying to protect themselves and learn about self-defense. I think it’s a great thing, really exciting, especially as a female to see that,” said Harrell.
Karen Butler of Alabama is attending the convention for the first time. She is the owner of a company called Shoot Like a Girl, which has a booth set up outside of the convention center.
“We are dedicated to growing the number of women in shooting sports,” said Butler.
Attached to the company tent is a trailer where ladies can learn to shoot a pistol, rifle or bow.
The NRA will have sessions for female members.
The exhibit hall opens Friday morning through Sunday evening. Registration opened Thursday.