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Thread: First time OCing - Huntsville

  1. #1
    Regular Member Trakanon's Avatar
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    Red face First time OCing - Huntsville

    Not sure if this forum is dead, but I have to post this somewhere.

    I OCed for the first time today, and it was in Huntsville. I was carrying a S&W 686 plus in a kydex holster. I carried in the new Walmart on the parkway and all over Parkway Place Mall. I visited several stores including a shoe store, Belk, Spencer's Gifts, the toy store, and even ate a slice of pizza in the food court. After that it was a trip to Gander Mountain. Later tonight I picked up some sushi and made a run through Publix for some groceries. Zero negative encounters. Not even so much as a negative glance in my direction. The cashier at one store asked me if it was a 44. A group of teens in the mall noticed I was carrying and gawked. But other than that no one seemed to notice or care. No confrontations with angry managers. No LEOs getting called. In Publix I turned a corner and there was an LEO doing his shopping. No confrontation there either. I'm thinking all of this is probably the norm, and my expectations of having negative encounters probably comes from watching too many youtube videos of guys with tactical vests and ARs slung over their shoulders trying to scare people.

  2. #2
    Lone Star Veteran DrMark's Avatar
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    This Virginian would like to welcome you to the forum, and say that I appreciate your post (especially for a first post).

    Malls are typically anti; glad to hear it went well there.

    I get to Huntsville every so often. Next time I'll look for someone open carrying a 686.

  3. #3
    Regular Member Trakanon's Avatar
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    Thank you for the welcome Dr. Mark. I OC'd again today in Lowe's, a different Walmart (Sparkman Drive for you locals), Kroger, and a few gas stations. A middle-aged couple approached me in Walmart and asked if I was a police officer (I'm not). They said that they thought you had to have a permit to carry, and that even then you could only carry concealed. I explained to them that Alabama was an OC state, as well as the differences in OC and CC and how that applies to carrying in automobiles, etc. They thanked me for clearing it up and said they would start OCing as well now they they knew it was legal. Another positive night OCing.

  4. #4
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    Welcome. May this be the beginning of your new normal. Good job on the way you advertised and got another one or two to think about OCing Your ability to articulate the legality of OC may have them reading up on laws and discussing them with other people who may have had the same questions. As more people learn that it is legal to carry, public opinion may be changed.
    Last edited by SW40VE-OC; 06-05-2015 at 11:49 PM.

  5. #5
    Regular Member SFCRetired's Avatar
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    Welcome, fellow Alabamian from a former denizen of Huntsville!

    You might want to check that mall's policy. Do not, repeat NOT, ask, but check either online or in the mall while not carrying. The reasoning is that some of the rent-a-cops can get ridiculous and go all Paul Blart on you.
    "Happiness is a warm shotgun!!"
    "I am neither a pessimist nor a cynic. I am, rather, a realist."
    "The most dangerous things I've ever encountered were a Second Lieutenant with a map and a compass and a Private who was bored and had time on his hands."

  6. #6
    Regular Member Trakanon's Avatar
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    Good call, SFCRetired. I do generally try to find out if a place is gun-friendly before I go in. At the very least I check the entrances for magic crime-preventing "no gun zone" signs. The mall does not have those, and the information desk had no posted mall rules or printouts. I googled it, and could only access a cached version of the mall's code of conduct which reads:

    In order to help ensure a pleasant shopping environment, we ask all visitors to refrain from the following:

    . . .

    20. Carrying or displaying weapons of any kind except those carried by certified law enforcement officers in the performance of their duties.
    This brings up the question of whether "asking to refrain. . ." means no firearms, or a "we'd prefer you didn't carry firearms, but we aren't outright banning it." One could read rule 20 to mean that you can carry as long as it's a weapon that law enforcement carries. So I'd probably have to leave my new Ruger LC9s with crimson trace at home, but can show up with Glocks all day long. Considering that rule #24 states that there will be no fishing, swimming, or boating in the mall, I'm not sure how sane these rules are.

  7. #7
    Regular Member AL Ranger's Avatar
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    Great first time experience. As SFC Retired said, malls are notorious for being anti-gun and especially when it is OC. Wal-Mart is open carry friendly as a corporation but there may be a store manager or so that can be a problem. Having been open carrying in the Huntsville area since 2010, I want to welcome you to the group of LAC's (Lawfully Armed Citizens). Now that the weather is getting hotter, open carry is really appreciated by those of us who go armed. I invite you to check out Rocket City Gun Rights which is my FB page for 2A advocates in the Huntsville area.
    Check out my home page @ www.alabamaopencarry.com and Carry On!

  8. #8
    Regular Member SFCRetired's Avatar
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    Note on problems with Wal Mart managers (as posted by AL Ranger): BTDT and burnt the Tee shirt. If a Wal Mart manager asks you to leave, do so. Be sure you have their name when you do. Then the person you want to contact is the District Manager, not corporate.

    I had this happen to me in Montgomery. A former member here contacted the DM, told him what happened, and gave him my contact information. I have not seen that manager in that store since then. The very next time I went into the store, the DM was there. I introduced myself and, much to my surprise, received a very profuse apology
    "Happiness is a warm shotgun!!"
    "I am neither a pessimist nor a cynic. I am, rather, a realist."
    "The most dangerous things I've ever encountered were a Second Lieutenant with a map and a compass and a Private who was bored and had time on his hands."

  9. #9
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    Welcome to the party, pal!

    I've been OCing in the north AL area (Madison) since around 2010-2011 or so, although since I moved to TN a year and half ago, I now mostly OC in TN. I OC my S&W 329PD in .44 Mag.

    By far, most of the comments have been positive, assuming anyone even notices.

    You shouldn't have any trouble except for perhaps the usual suspects: Costco, Panera Bread, the malls, Toy Store (or whatever it's called), USPS etc.

    Had a BBQ this past weekend; my neighbor OC'd his .380 to the party. As usual, Zero Forks Given by the +50 guests.

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