Gatherings with Guns

Horse drawn carriage
Kevin’s Southern Game Fair takes place at the spectacular Greenwood Plantation, in Thomasville. Photograph by Ralph P. Stuart

Whether you’re a well-rounded countrysports enthusiast, a hardcore clays crusher or simply a fan of cool, old side-by-side shotguns, here are some fall events that will trip your trigger. Gather a few friends for a road trip, and get out and enjoy the smell of burnt powder in the forest.

Tunnel of Trees Side x Side Tournament & Game Fair

September 8 – 10
Emmet County Sportsmen’s Club, Harbor Springs, Michigan

This is the second annual gathering in northwest Michigan a few miles from Lake Michigan and Mackinac Island. Sporting clays, skeet, trap, Crazy Quail, 5 Stand and an 80-target Hunter’s Clays main event (for side-by-sides only). There will be an on-site food truck as well as vendors with shotguns, sporting books, art and so on. Information: 231-526-1135.

Northern Side by Side & Challenge Expo

September 14 – 17
Rock Mountain Sporting Clays, Meshoppen, Pennsylvania

Four days of side-by-side fun, with exhibitors and four major American shotgun collector groups gathered. Information: 570-965-7625.

Orvis Game Fair & Sporting Weekend

September 16 & 17

Sandanona Shooting Grounds, Millbrook, New York

October 28 & 29
Orvis Shooting Grounds at Pursell Farms, Sylacauga, Alabama

The 11th running of this growing event—the closest to a full countrysports game fair in the US—will be held at a second location as well. Enjoy a tented exhibition, fly-fishing demonstrations, dog-training seminars, sporting clays and a Land Rover driving course. Compete Sunday at Sandanona for the Orvis Cup. Information: 845-677-9701 or 855-799-2826.

Vintage Gunners Cup World Side-by-Side Championship & Exhibition

September 22 – 24
Hopkins Game Farm, Kennedyville, Maryland

The 20th Anniversary of the Vintage Gunners Cup—originally the Vintage Cup. Side events Friday and Saturday; rifle events Friday. The main event will be Sunday. Exhibitors will include sporting-arms collectors and dealers and related vendors. Information: 410-348-5287.

Southern Side by Side Championship & Exhibition
The Fall Classic

October 20 & 22
Back Woods Quail Club, Georgetown, South Carolina

An extension of the spring shoot at Deep River Sporting Clays, in Sanford, North Carolina, the Fall Classic offers a similar variety of shooting near the South Carolina coast. The main event is 80 targets on Sunday. The exhibition will include wingshooting and fine-gun vendors and dealers. Information: 843-546-1466.

Kevin’s Southern Game Fair

November 10
Greenwood Plantation, Thomasville, Georgia

This second annual event sponsored by Kevin’s Fine Outdoor Gear & Apparel brings family and community together to benefit conservation dear to South Georgia’s heart: bobwhite quail habitat and the longleaf-pine forest. Includes daylong 5 Stand shooting and exhibitor booths. Information: 229-226-7766.

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