The largest sports and outdoor show in North America is even bigger this year, and, best of all for hunters, fisherman and the like, it starts Saturday.
The 2012 Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show, which runs Feb. 4 through 12 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg, will feature more than 1,200 exhibitors, more than 200 of which are new to the show.
Hours for the show, celebrating its 57th year this year, are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day except Sunday, Feb. 5, and Sunday, Feb. 12. Sunday hours for the show are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
It's hard to imagine an event like the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show growing any bigger, but that's exactly what it has done, according to Event Director Chris O'Hara.
Among the new features at this year's show is the Sportsman's Shop Gun Alley. In partnership with the Sportsman's Shop of New Holland, the show has gathered all of its gun manufacturers, gun retailers and gun representatives in one place - making it easier than ever to see what's new and make purchases.
"We kind of brought it all together ... and we have added manufacturers," O'Hara said. "The reason we did that was one of the most requested things by our attendees was to see more guns and gun manufacturers and be able to buy guns."
Perhaps the biggest name making its first appearance at the show is Smith & Wesson, according to the event director.
Two other big names making an impact at this year's show are Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's. Both will be selling fishing tackle and other fishing products.
"There's more fishing tackle for people to buy on site," O'Hara said.
The Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show has always been home to a number of calling contests, such as owl hooting and turkey calling.
This year, predator calling has been added and so has the U.S. Open Turkey Calling Championship.
"We've always had a turkey calling contest at the show... but we have added the U.S. Open to the second weekend of the show and it will definitely bring the best turkey callers from all over the country to compete," O'Hara said.
Also new that weekend is Kids Day, which will be Saturday, Feb. 11.
"Basically, it's just a lot of activities we already have, but we're promoting it for kids," O'Hara said.
Family entertainment available throughout the show includes Raptors Up Close, which provides an closer look at birds of prey and falconry; trick archery shooting; and the Kids Trout Pond, where children can fish indoors.