KEARNEY — Phil Tripe reels off locations like he’s talking about an 1840s mountain man rendezvous.
“We’re having some different traders coming in this year,” said the co-chair for the United Nebraska Muzzleloaders Association’s annual Trade Show and Convention. “We have some people coming in from Kansas, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado and Iowa. We’ll cover the Midwestern states. Minnesota is coming in and North Dakota, too. We’re going to cover it all.”
Tripe expects 150 vendors to set up tables for the event. They will be selling a variety of handmade items, including knives, fur hats, apparel, leather items, musical instruments and tools — all influenced by the mountain man culture that existed in the Rocky Mountains from 1810 through 1880. The trade show resembles the rendezvous events the mountain men organized to gather, sell items and swap stories.
“It’s like reliving history,” Tripe said of the convention and trade show. “You get a feel for what it used to be like in the 1800s. Most of those people, they traded for what they wanted — or they made what they needed. That’s how they survived. It’s quite a culture.”
The Early American Trade Show & Muzzleloaders Convention, presented by the United Nebraska Muzzleloaders Association, was scheduled to open today and continue through Sunday at the Ramada Inn, 301 Second Ave. Hours are noon-5 p.m. today; 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday; and 8 a.m.-noon Sunday. There is a nominal admission fee.