Best Gun Shows in New England

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Top 3

#1 - Big E, West Springfield,MA
#2 - The Arena, Concord, NH
#3 - Marlboro, MA

Honorable Mention

Biddeford Arena, ME (Because it has Maine dealers)
Wilmington, MA (Because it's close to me)
Sturbridge, MA (Because I like old guns)

Under 100 table shows

Bektash, Concord, NH
Leominster Sportsmans
 

Rockrivr1

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Never liked the Big E Show. Pay to park, pay to get in and only one or two ammo vendors in the arena separated off.

For me I'd put Wilmington as #1. Different vendors then the norms you see in Marlboro, Sturbridge, Foxboro, etc'.....
 

greencobra

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i only do the Wilmington show cause it's 15-20 min away from me. haven't been impressed with that show in years and will only go if i'm looking for something specific. if I thought other shows further out were better, i'd take the ride.
 

LuvDog

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I've only been to the Wilmington show once, but did think it was better than the Marlboro show. Unfortunately, the Marlboro show is the closest for me.
 

Greg

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Big E best ?

Im not into one ammo vendor,a half filled arena,pay to park and Nazi marching music in the background. Doesnt make it a great show in my opinion.

I always thought it was the worst show,even before full retardation hit the gun industry.Although I never attended a show there before the NY ammo guys became the sole purveyor of ammo.So maybe it was the best 20 years ago ?
 
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Len-2A Training

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Big E best ?

Im not into one ammo vendor,a half filled arena,pay to park and Nazi marching music in the background. Doesnt make it a great show in my opinion.

I always thought it was the worst show,even before full retardation hit the gun industry.Although I never attended a show there before the NY ammo guys became the sole purveyor of ammo.So maybe it was the best 20 years ago ?
At one time the halls at the Big E were filled (maybe 30+ yrs ago) and as it dwindled and parking charges were added on, it became less interest to me (90+ minutes each way). If I lived very close, my thoughts could be different. Marlboro and Wilmington became larger shows and free parking made it more of a draw.
 

FPrice

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At the first Big E Gun Show I went to (mid-90's ?) I could have bought a Barrett for just under $3,000.

Coulda, wouda, shoulda. [banghead]
 

Zappa

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At one time the halls at the Big E were filled (maybe 30+ yrs ago) and as it dwindled and parking charges were added on, it became less interest to me (90+ minutes each way). If I lived very close, my thoughts could be different. Marlboro and Wilmington became larger shows and free parking made it more of a draw.
This^

Back in the 80's and most of the 90's, it was THE premier gun show in New England, and the place was packed wall to wall. They claimed it was 900 tables, not sure if that was completely true, but it took most of the day to walk around if you intended to see everything. And there were some real bargains to be had too, I still have at least five or six guns in my collection that I remember buying there.
I stopped going in the late 2000's, the last time was a complete disappointment, it's only a shadow of what it once was, and I hear it only gets more lame every year. All the good out-of-state vendors stopped going after Mass changed the gun laws in 1998, then it was all downhill from there.
 

scaler1967

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1. Barre, VT Gun Show - probably the last of the "old time" shows.
2. Fort Constitution Shows at the Bektash Shrine in Concord, NH.
3. N.E.E Show,(formerly Diprete), at the Everett Arena in Concord, NH.
 

Ben Cartwright SASS

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Just got back from Marlboro, I had my BPD collection there but took a walk around and they are missing at least 20-25% of the tables, to the left end of the hall it was very empty

Also less people, there was a steady trickle in but could it be the Trump effect, during Obama reign the wall was around the building until 11 or 11:30 am, yesterday by 9:30 it was about 40 people long, tended to stay that way for most of the morning but not a huge crowd. Wonder if the gun shows are going to dry up and blow away?
 

hiker45acp

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Pros and cons on most shows; Marlboro: Pros: Easy to get to, tons of guns, lots of other stuff. Cons: Dealers think they have gold selling there and prices too high, very little flex on prices, could do better at gun shops. Wilmington; Easy to get to, great large show, lots of stuff. Cons: too much stuff, not enough guns. Seems more like a gun accessory flea market. Springfield; Pros: very large show, lots of different dealers, find a lot of flex on prices and hard to find items, good mix. Cons: Cost of parking is a rip off, monopoly on ammo outside and prices seem higher. Manchester NH; Pros: Great parking in garage, parking price reasonable, line is indoors no matter what the weather, great mix of dealers, flex on prices, good all around. Cons: Other than the long ride for me, could not find any.....forgot, lousy MA laws preventing MA buyers from buying more items. Concord NH; Pros: Great large show, large amount of mixed guns, access. etc.., good flex on prices, enjoyable show. Cons: Longer ride from my location, but not too bad, lousy MA laws preventing MA buyers from buying more items. That's my 2 cents!
 

Dennis in MA

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I've never found the Big E shows to be decent. Back in the day when they were Winny Collectors Club shows, there were tables upon tables of grossly overpriced 100yo lever guns that no one really wanted. Plus associated parts. Those poor old guys lugging all that stuff to every show.

But it always seemed just a bit. . . . meh. It's the ammo thing. It's the parking thing. It's the 2 hour drive thing. Although back in the day, we'd go to Chi-Chi's after. I liked that.

For me, it's still Marlboro. I don't like Wilmington for some reason. Perhaps it's just that I know the Marlboro show so well. I can navigate easily. I get there STUPID early and get a great parking spot. (Although that wasn't an issue last month.). And Linguine's.
 
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