The NRA announced this week it will hold its 136th Annual Meetings and Exhibits in St. Louis, April 13-17, 2007. During the weekend convention, America's Center will be filled with more than 60,000 people exploring five acres of guns, hunting equipment and outdoor gear.
"St. Louis truly is the gateway to the heartland of America and thousands of NRA members and supporters," said NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre. "The Second Amendment stands at the gateway of freedom and there is no better place to celebrate freedom than St. Louis."
Missouri Governor Matt Blunt welcomed the announcement. "This is great news. Missourians believe in protecting the Second Amendment. I am delighted that the National Rifle Association has selected St. Louis as the host city for their 136th Annual Meetings and Exhibits," said Governor Blunt. "This major national event will bring a significant economic boon for hotels, restaurants, and other merchants. NRA members will experience the superior hospitality of the fine folks of the ‘Show-Me' state. I look forward to welcoming the 60,000 plus NRA members and their families to the magnificent city of St. Louis."
LaPierre noted several reasons for selecting St. Louis as the 2007 NRA convention site. The city is centrally located within a day's drive of 1/3 of the U.S. population and 300 miles of 400,000 NRA members. Ample hotel space, new downtown development, and a multitude of visitor services were also key elements in the decision.
"This has the potential to be the largest convention in NRA history," LaPierre said. "We appreciate the warm welcome and excitement of the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Bureau, and look forward to an outstanding weekend in 2007 in this great city."
Last April, the NRA convention in Houston drew nearly 60,000 NRA members, boosting the local economy by an estimated $20 million. In 2006, the event is scheduled to be in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.