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Published January 06, 2013, 09:08 PM

Local gun shows are seeing an increase in attendance

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Gun shows across the nation are seeing rapid increases in attendance. Locally it's the same story, but the increase is not as dramatic as some of those other places.

By: Becky Parker, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Gun shows across the nation are seeing rapid increases in attendance. Locally it's the same story, but the increase is not as dramatic as some of those other places.

A gun show in Fargo saw record attendance, but not like the rush at other shows across the country in the weeks since the shooting in New Town, Connecticut.

An estimated 4,000 people attended the Dakota Territory Gun Collector's 36th annual Show at the Civic Center.

Bill Braun/Gun show owner: "Our best year ever was probably 3,500 people, and on a normal year it would be about 3,000 people. Well, we did that on the first day this year."

The show features all types of firearms, mostly hunting-related.

For vendors selling automatic rifles, talk of stricter gun laws has been affecting sales for weeks.

Mike Seaburg/Seaburg's Inc.: "Parents have been buying stuff for their kids that might only be 10 years old, but they think if there's a ban they want their kids to be able to have the gun, so they're buying them now."

Mike Seaburg from Seaburg's Incorporated in Carrington says he has sold about 150 automatic rifles in the past two weeks.

Seaburg: "That's very unusual, that's about a six-month supply for me, I'm a small dealer."

Most of this show is geared toward hunting, and sales of those items were up, as well. Some attribute that to a good local economy.

Randy Ullmer/Wolf's Den Gun Shop: "Disposable income that we're seeing is being spent at this show. It's been a very good show. It's been steady traffic for people buying ammunition and components."

And as the gun debate swirls, collectors and enthusiasts say firearms like the ones here are not to blame.

Braun: "It's not inanimate objects that kill people. It's people that kill people."

According to the FBI, applications for gun permits have gone through the roof in the past few weeks.

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