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FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 2020

- TOP STORY -
By virtue of the new situation regarding the spread of the coronavirus, NürnbergMesse has decided to postpone IWA OutdoorClassics 2020 and Enforce Tac / U.T.SEC 2020, from the planned dates of 4-5 and 6-9 March 2020 to a date in 2020, which yet has to be specified.
- AIRGUNS -
The new Hatsan Alpha youth rifle is a traditional break-barrel air rifle that incorporates the same design elements and features as its full-sized counterparts. The Alpha's stock is more compact and lighter weight.
- COMPETITION -
Team Vihtavuori member Ian Klemm has medaled in every event at Berger’s Southwest Nationals long range competition. Klemm took 3rd Overall in the FTR Mid-Range (600 yards) and Long Range events (800, 900, and 1,000 yards).

Team Berger shooter, John Mullins, swept all three divisions and won the 2020 Arizona State Lever Action Rifle Silhouette Championship.
Fourteen anglers competing in the 202 Bassmaster Classic will be utilizing the One-Boat Network™ from Humminbird® and Minn Kota® as they compete do battle for top honors in the bass fishing world.
From down south at Lake Guntersville and the Harris Chain, to Texas at Lake Fork and in the Midwest at Lake Winnebago, and up north at the St. Lawrence River and Lake Champlain, leading pro bass anglers from the U.S. and Canada will be relying on the best Shimano tackle, G. Loomis rods, PowerPro braid and Jackall bass baits as they all compete to be the best.
The final results of the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s Aces Postal Matches are now posted. The Aces Postal is a satellite air gun match for adult and junior competitors – posing several competition opportunities over the course of four quarters.

- EVENTS -
World Turkey Calling Champion Matt Morrett and Petersen’s Bowhunting Editor Christian Berg are among the presenters at “The Art of Turkey Calling” event at SteelStacks in Bethlehem March 18, 6 p.m.
- FISHERIES -
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) invites the public to provide input on the development of a management plan for Harris Chain of Lake’s fish, wildlife and habitat. This plan will guide the FWC’s management on the Harris Chain.
If you are looking for some warmer weather and some hot fishing, look no further than Otter Creek Reservoir, Minersville Reservoir, and Lake Powell .
- FISHING -
In the second stage of Major League Fishing’s Bass Pro Tour, Mustad Pro Jacob Powroznik took a commanding lead on the final day and earned his second BPT victory on Florida’s Lake Okeechobee.

- FISHING TOURNAMENTS -
Ranger Boats pro angler Jacob Powroznik of Prince George, Virginia, won the $100,000 first-place prize, plus an extra $10,000 from the Ranger Cup contingency program, at Major League Fishing’s Bass Pro Tour Stage Two at Lake Okeechobee on February 26.
- INDUSTRY -
Davidson’s, a firearms wholesaler, announced it has added Weaver to its family of firearms accessory offerings. Davidson’s initial offerings from Weaver will focus on optic mounting hardware.
Traditions Firearms announces The W.L Carter Company as their 2019 Rep Group of the Year. This award was presented in Las Vegas as part of pre-SHOT show activities.
Heckler & Koch has named Owen J Brown & Associates as their 2019 Manufacturer’s Representative Group of the Year. OJB provides sales and marketing services in the Western US States for various brands in the shooting, hunting and outdoor trade.

Self most recently served as Vice President of Sales for Maurice Sporting Goods and has also worked for both South Bend Sporting Goods and Zebco as National Sales Manager.
The NMMA announces a new executive leadership team as it reorganizes and builds the framework for NMMA’s strategic vision under NMMA President Frank Hugelmeyer.
- LEGISLATION -
Knife Rights' Michigan Knife Law Preemption bill, HB 5286, the "Michigan Knife Rights Act," is scheduled for a hearing next Tuesday, March 3rd, at 9:00 AM in the House Judiciary Committee.
- NEW PRODUCTS -
Streamlight Inc. launched a new version of the Stylus Pro USB penlight. The light now delivers 350 lumens and features a slimmer, matte black body with a forward-sliding protective sleeve for the micro USB port.

Big bucks up close are what every deer hunter dreams about, and Big&J's Legit® is uniquely formulated to draw deer in and help aid antler growth at the same time making those dreams a reality.
Rhino Brand Realtree EDGE Camo Apple Watch Band is a rugged option for Apple watch users. This stealthy, low-profile style is wrapped in Realtree EDGE camo making it perfect for the outdoors enthusiast.
DeSantis Gunhide introduces 8 holster fits for the Ruger 57 pistol, including those with red dot sights. The Speed Scabbard, Mini Slide and other models are made for the new pistol line.
LaserMax is shipping a green version of the newest generation of Guide Rod Laser technology for the Glock 43 and the recently released 43X and 48 subcompact handguns.

- ONLINE -
Outdoor Action TV is excited to be streaming the ‘LUND Ultimate Fishing Experience’ – at your fingertips, anytime, anywhere--this week, musky on Lake Wabigoon.
- RADIO -
Tune in to this week’s Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World Radio show as host Rob Keck will be visiting with two Grand National turkey calling champions and Grand National Hall of Famers.
- RECOGNITION -
Yesterday, the Park Law Enforcement Association honored Officer Kyle Yurewitch with the 2019 Distinguished Service Award during its awards banquet at the annual conference at the DeGray Lake Resort State Park in Arkansas.
- RETAIL -
During the Classic Expo, the sport show which coincides with this year’s 2020 Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk in Birmingham, Alabama, anglers who purchase a new Ugly Stik Carbon casting or spinning rod from retailers operating at the event will be eligible to receive an Ugly Stik-branded dry bag
From March 1 through May 31, 2020, TNW Firearms is offering consumers a $50.00 rebate on all standard Aero Survival Rifles and Tac Aero Survival Pistols.

 

With the addition of an extra day on the calendar this Leap Year, Pyramyd Air has decided to reward those born on this rare day (i.e., Leaplings) with 29 times the usual amount of Pyramyd Air reward points, known as Bullseye Bucks, earned at PyramydAir.com on their orders placed February 29th, 2020.
- SPECIES -
To address the diversity of needs across the state, the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program annually supports Cooperative Invasive Species Management Areas.

- SPONSORSHIPS -
Lapua announced their renewed support of the Practical Rimfire Challenge as the title sponsor. The Lapua Practical Rimfire Challenge Series is held at the Peacemaker National Training Center in Glengary, WV.
- STATE PARKS -
A prescribed burn is planned for a section of the Lakepoint State Park campground in Eufaula, Alabama, in March 2020, weather permitting. The burn is not expected to affect camping reservations.
Lincoln State Park staff will remove more than 300 white pine trees and nearly 90 white ash trees from the campground in the coming weeks. The pine trees were planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s.
- STATES -
Hunters, landowners and anyone else interested in deer and moose should plan on attending the Vermont Fish and Wildlife public hearings being held in March.
State leaders Thursday shared Michigan’s draft Adaptive Management Plan that will inform decisions and guide projects outlined in the Domestic Action Plan for Lake Erie, a targeted approach for improving water quality and reducing the amount of phosphorus entering the lake by 40 percent by 2025.
With strong bipartisan support, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation that transfers management authority of Atlantic menhaden to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, which oversees every other saltwater fishery in the Commonwealth.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife is reminding all those who enjoy hunting and fishing to check the expiration date on their licenses before heading into the field this year.
- STUDENT FISHING -
The Big Bass Zone Junior Championship (BBZ JC) Presented by Bassmaster Magazine will be on hand at the Bassmaster Classic in Birmingham to help teenagers sign up for the 2020 program. The BBZ JC awarded over $370,000 in prizes and scholarships at the 2019 Championship hosted by Idaho’s The Willows Club on Lake Pend Oreille.
- TELEVISION -
Host Mark Zona will fish with the very best anglers on the planet to catch anything with fins on Zona’s Awesome Fishing Show airing on Outdoor Channel on Sundays at 9 am ET.
- WILDLIFE -
A fatal viral disease continues to impact Florida freshwater turtles, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) asks the public to assist the ongoing investigation by reporting sick and dead turtles.
- YOUTH PROGRAMS -
Central Michigan Sportsman’s Club in Stanton, Michigan recently hosted an indoor regional event for Michigan Scholastic 3-D Archery. Archers from across Michigan and five different S3DA clubs participated in this regional event.
 

Next week, the outdoor industry was expecting to be in Nuremberg, Germany for the IWA Outdoor Classics 2020 show. If you’re not familiar with IWA, it’s the European version of SHOT, although attendees say it’s a decidedly less pressurized, more relationship-focused event.

IWA will not be happening next week.

COVID-19 has claimed another victim.

After a series of meetings Wednesday and Thursday with German government officials, the organizers of IWA (NurnbergMesse) decided to postpone the event until “some time later in 2020.” Enforce Tac/U.T.SEC 2020 which normally follows IWA was also postponed.

NurnbergMesse Board Member Petra Wolf said “We hope the industry will understand the decision to postpone. The aim of every exhibition has to be to create a special experience for the exhibitors and visitors likewise and to enable networking and expansion of existing business relationships.”

“Unfortunately, this goal cannot be achieved under the current circumstances,” although Wolf says the organization is looking to find “the best possible alternative date for such an important event for our customers.”

Wow. That says a lot.

There are a lot of moving parts involved in any trade event. Cancelling a significant trade show is actually more complicated than staging one. After decades of attending shows across a variety of industries, I realize there are lots of moving parts in a trade event.

Speaking with the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Chris Dolnack, the executive who oversees SHOT Show shortly after yesterday’s announcement, I began to realize there are significant challenges involved in cancelling an event.

“There are detailed contracts with labor, facilities and service suppliers to unwind,” he explained, “it’s a huge job to work through all the details.”

And the details are normally very specific. But this latest threat to business is anything but business as usual.

SHOT, for example, has separate agreements with twenty-two hotels. According to Dolnack, they cover “a wide range of price points for attendees and exhibitors.” Each of those contracts is separately negotiated and must be “unwound” the same way.

Consider the last trade show your company attended. There were the obvious logistical concerns: display space, housing, and collaterals materials to give, show or sell to attendees. Those are significant investments, but only show the tip of the trade show iceberg. What about the cost of pipe and drape to separate you from the other booths, or to carpeting (pad, anyone?) and, oh, you want electricity? Then there are the costs associated with a term called drayage. If you know the term, your teeth are grinding.

It’s a dizzying deal. Now multiply that by hundreds- if not thousands- of times, and you see what the show organizers of IWA are facing.

We’re only a week away from this major annual event. Exhibition materials are most likely already on the way, hotel reservations have been made, plane tickets purchased and staffing rescheduled to cover the business during the show.

Suddenly, there is no show.

Your booth is in transit, if not already sitting on the docks at the venue. What do you do? After all, you’ve been told the event isn’t cancelled, it’s delayed.

Did you buy: 1) non-refundable airline tickets, or 2) travel insurance? Is there a travel agent working on your behalf?

And what about the potential for loss of business? If this show represents a significant portion of your international business, you’re looking at real, tangible losses.

Some companies had already made the decision not to attend. Yesterday’s Outdoor Wire, for example, had Maxpedition’s official announcement that they would not be going to Germany. As Maxpedition’s Tim Tang said, “we are not willing to expose our employees to the potential medical, public health, economic and social risks associated with this rapidly spreading new disease for which there is no cure.”

Others, like Stag Arms, were making the announcement that, for the first time, they would be in their own display area at IWA 2020.

Yesterday, I had to tell some PR agencies that no matter what their releases said to the contrary, their clients wouldn’t be attending IWA next week.

Because there won’t be an event next week.

The Coronavirus isn’t widespread in the United States, but it’s decidedly having an impact here.

Yesterday, Facebook announced its annual developers conference set for May in San Jose, California, was cancelled.

The Game Developers Conference, the largest convention for video game developers is still set to happen March 16-20 in San Francisco. But all ten of the Chinese-based exhibitors at the show have already cancelled and all China-based attendees are out as well. That’s two percent of the expected total attendance eliminated.

As of this writing, IWA is only the latest group to cancel or postpone events.

Mobile World Congress, the world’s largest mobile phone trade show, was set for February 24-27 in Barcelona, Spain. It was cancelled. Ditto the Milan (Italy) Furniture Fair, the world’s largest for April 21-26. Fashion weeks in Paris and Milan were hit hard, and the weeks in Beijing and Shanghai have been cancelled altogether.

The Chinese Grand Prix, set to open the Formula One season, has been cancelled, and organizers for races in Australia, Bahrain and Vietnam say they’re “waiting to make decisions” on their events.

When I met the guys from Mira Safety at SHOT Show in January, I had no idea that their area would quickly become one of the hot topics in business. Jim Shepherd/OWDN photo.

At this point, despite the fact COVID-19 has not been declared a pandemic, the impact is inarguable, and far from over.

Around the world, industries are being impacted in ways few would have imagined only a couple of weeks ago. As stock markets tank, companies with products that are used for disinfecting, sanitizing or protecting people from infection are quietly rising while airlines, cruise ships and transportation sector-stocks are tanking.

Meanwhile, the protective mask business is booming. Around the world, consumer demand for masks to help protect everyone from business travelers to toddlers from COVID-19 has skyrocketed.

But are the generally-applied paper masks like you see in widespread usage across other parts of the world really effective?

According to safety experts the short answer is: no.

According to Roman Zrazhevskiy, founder of Mira Safety (www.mirasafety.com) a Texas manufacturer of professional respirators, safety devices and tactical gear in Austin, Texas, consumers don’t realize that there are designations of protective levels.

“A paper mask with the notation N-95 means it is rated as being capable of filtering out 95 percent of particulates,” he explains, “it also means five percent of the particulates aren’t, and there could certainly be some virus in that remaining five percent.”

To protect your face and eyes (the virus is thought to be transmittable via the eyes), he says, you need a full-face respirator. In fact, he said that he thought the idea of full-face protection “sensible” for international air travel right now.

So why are people wearing the masks? His answer wasn’t want I expected.

“Fear,” he said, “not just the fear of coming down with Coronavirus. People realize that if they contract the virus, they’re not only going to be sick, they’re going to be singled out, and automatically placed in quarantine. They’re essentially going to be imprisoned until you either recover, or die.”

Mira Safety, like 3M and other manufacturers of safety equipment, is feeling the impact of that fear. According to Zrazhevskiy, business is up, not significantly, but “orders of magnitude” over normal. His fear, he said, was that the impact of Coronavirus would cause widespread panic.

It’s too-early to be visualizing bare grocery shelves, scarce foodstuffs and shortages, but it’s not too-soon to wonder if it’s time to start taking a hard look at our personal pantries and doing a little “common-sense” planning of our own.

We’ll keep you posted.

—Jim Shepherd

Editor’s Note: If you’re interested in learning more about protective masks, Mira Safety (www.mirasafety.com) is offering a free e-Book on their website that might help.

OUTDOOR WIRE
Event Calendar

MARCH 4-8
Ducks in the Desert Continental Shoot

Las Vegas

74th Annual Fred Hall Show

Long Beach, CA; www.fredhall.com

APRIL 17-19
NRA Annual Meetings

Nashville, TN

 
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