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Thread: Open Carry in Lancaster

  1. #1
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    First time post - I've been lurking for a while. Love the site. This site gave me the push I needed to move from CC to OC for the first time. Last night I took my family shopping, and OC'd most of the time. We met some friends for dinner who wouldn't have approved, since I was new to it, I switched to CC for dinner. Had no problem at the shopping outlets in Lancaster, a few glances, but nothing serious.

    Went to Park City Mall, got a few funny looks, and one of my wife's cousins confronted me, and was pretty po'd that I carry. Overall, a good first OC experience. We have three children 4 & under, and we were all nicely dressed. I suppose nobody was really suspicious of a guy w/ three little kids, a wife, and a stroller.

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    Great work!

    I grew up in Lancaster - and know Park City Mall well!

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    I've been OC'ing extensively in the Lancaster / Chester Co. area. On Friday night, another member of this forum (theacted) & I went out for wings with a few friends at a place called the Brasserie, in Bridgeport, just outside of Lancaster. He was OC w/ his Glock, and I w/ my Kahr P9, both in Fobus paddle holsters. He got there before me, and was inside for 20 minutes before I came in. As soon as I sat down, the manager came over, knelt down beside me and quietly asked if I was a cop. I told him I wasn't. He said that there is a state law that bans carrying a gun in a bar in PA. I politely told him that there wasn't. He was very calm, and respectful, but got a little flustered at this point. He told me that there was off-duty LEO at the bar, who had pointed me out, and asked the manager why he thought I was packing. That's when he came to talk to me. (This all happened within 5 minutes of me getting there, and nobody had seen theacted's Glock yet.)

    He said he would like if I would disarm in his establishment, so I asked him if it would be ok if I just went to the men's room and conceal. He beat around the bush a little, clearly not wanting to just throw me out, but also trying to figure out what to say to the LEO, who was probably a regular (I'm not.) To alleviate his discomfort, and to get on with my wings, I offered to go secure my weapon in the truck. This brought a huge smile of relief to his face, so theacted & I volunteerily went outside and disarmed.

    We enjoyed our stay there for a few hours, until about 1 a.m. very nice place, think Applebees, but nicer, more upscale. As we were ready to leave, I went to speak with the manager away from our large table, to discuss the issue with him more in depth. We ended up talking for 20 minutes, great conversation. He was not an anti at all, but just had gotten flustered with the situation. He apoligized for making up law as he did, and profusely thanked me for the polite way in which I handled the situation. We talked a lot about OC versus CC, and he admitted that, now that he can think clearly about it, he thinks OC is preferable to him, because if I'm carrying a gun, at least that's out on the table, and he can deal with that fact as we're communicating.

    I pointed out to him that if firearms are not allowed in the restaraunt, they really should post the entrance, so that I could make a decision about whether or not to do business there. He indicated that he very much respected my decision, and wishes he had handled the incident differently, and I advised him that I would likely be carrying the next time I came in, and would continue to do so until he asks me not too, or until I see a sign posted, or something of that nature. He said he doesn't see that being a problem, and he would let me know if something changes.

    All in all, a lot of education for him, and a positive, constructive conversation, that I believe furthered our cause. I could just as easily conceal, but I OC in order to make a political statement, when the opportunity arises, just as it did here.

    Thanks to this forum, I was informed enough to confidantly educate him about our rights here in the Commonwealth.

    Merry Christmas all!

  4. #4
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    Doesn't matter if he posts a sign or not, they mean nothing.

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    Good job in that things all turned out okay in the end. I will admit to having less patience and would have probably kept going after being asked to take my rights out to the truck. This person would not have earned my two cents that day. No wings are that important to me.

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    Good work - everybody has there own style. Sugar gets the fly as they say.

    I probably would have left the restaurant being averse to leaving guns in cars, but I have done it at K-12 schools in VA where I can lock the unloaded gun in the trunk and take my ammo with me into the school.

    Another technique is to show your PA LTCF but explain it is technically not needed to open carry but you have one anyway. People respons to indecia of privilege sometimes quite nicely - unfortunately, this has a downside as people will often do what the authorities tell them, even if it immoral: see http://www.apa.org/topics/iraqiabuse.html

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    First time post - read the article in the Lancaster New Era, and decided that "open carry" was much easier than trying to keep my firearm out of sight. I've had my LTCF for almost 12 years, but couldn't resist OCing now that I know I can.

    I've been to Home Depot, Rohrer's Hardware, and the Weiss market pharmacy (where the clerk said that seeing my gun reminded her of home where lots of people carry). I forgotto ask her where home was. Also was in and out of two Turkey Hill mini-markets and a Pep Boys store.

  8. #8
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    i just found out about open carry. i really wanted to give it a try but with the whole virgina tech thing, not to sure right now.

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    Fezziwig wrote:
    First time post - read the article in the Lancaster New Era, and decided that "open carry" was much easier than trying to keep my firearm out of sight. I've had my LTCF for almost 12 years, but couldn't resist OCing now that I know I can.

    I've been to Home Depot, Rohrer's Hardware, and the Weiss market pharmacy (where the clerk said that seeing my gun reminded her of home where lots of people carry). I forgotto ask her where home was. Also was in and out of two Turkey Hill mini-markets and a Pep Boys store.
    Great work! - I hope to get up to Lanc county this summer - maybe we can have a low key OCDO get together - someone in Lanc should think about coord this.

  10. #10
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    Holy Camoli!

    Look at these LTEs in the Lancaster New Era as a result of the recent open carry article at http://local.lancasteronline.com/11/30957! Please forward.

    If we could just get PA gun owners informed and motivated we could get some pro-gun reforms passed!

    I'm gald that paper published the truth about OC in PA - now everyone, including police and prosecutors, should have notice that OC is legal, and, that the LTCF is an open carry permit inside vehicles andon the streets of Philadelphia.

    Let's get OC going in PA this year - make it a goal - keep it low key and matter of fact, but we can make it happen.

    Write lots of Letters to Editors tonewspapers too - keep 'em straight on open carry rights.

    ------
    Recent summary (April/May 2007) of activity related to from the Lancaster NewEra:
    Editor’s note: Last week’s story on openly carrying handguns in public has generated comments from around the nation. Here is a sampling. It should be noted that it is illegal to [highlight= yellow]open-[highlight= yellow]carry in a vehicle in Pennsylvania unless you have a license to [highlight= yellow]carry a firearm. Also, Park City Center has a policy against customers carrying weapons on mall property.


    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    First, I absolutely respect and defend an individual’s right to own and [highlight= yellow]carry/use firearms as long as it is done in a legal and RESPONSIBLE manner.

    While the individual showcased in your article certainly seems confident in the way he chooses to wear his weapon and obviously believes that making his weapon visible leaves no doubt of his ability (or ‘implied’ ability — as a man is no more ‘armed’ just because he OWNS a gun than he is a musician just because he owns a piano) to defend himself, I cannot believe someone in this day and age would willfully invite the scrutiny and potential liability in carrying a weapon like this.

    We are fortunate to live in a very gun-friendly state (thank you to all the hunters out there of which I am not one). We are surrounded by states that have all but done away with reasonable gun ownership and [highlight= yellow]carry laws.

    Let’s not mess things up by prompting new gun legislation because a few want to take advantage of a loophole when really there is no need to.

    Pay the fee, fill out the forms and [highlight= yellow]carry your weapon and permit (preferably concealed) in a secure holster. Add to that some relevant, basic firearms training and you will be much better off all around — especially if you are unfortunate enough to have to use your weapon to defend yourself someday.



    Dale Stewart

    Lancaster

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    I just wanted to thank you for the great article you wrote on “Packing Heat in Plain view”.

    I’ve had police hassle me when carrying openly, but since it’s not illegal, they cannot charge me with violating any law.

    However, I HAVE known folks get charged with disorderly conduct for doing so. They beat the charge in court, but still, it’s money spent for no good reason.

    It’s always nice to see a pro-gun rights article in an increasingly rights-restrictive time.



    Jay Bell

    Gilbertsville, Pa.

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    I would like to thank you for a well-written article on gun owners/carriers. It is good to see some positive publicity for gun owners. I am glad to see reporters writing about citizens that have chosen to protect themselves and their families. As we have seen, police cannot be everywhere and it is up to a citizen to protect themselves.



    Keith Coleman

    Erie, Pa.

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    Thank you for the article in Tuesday’s New Era, “Packing heat in plain view.” It showed that all gun-carrying people are not fanatics, just good, law-abiding citizens that wish to be safe. We need more articles like this to help protect our rights.



    Joan Asso

    Lancaster

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    You have provided Lancaster County with the information that they can walk around with handguns in a holster on their hip.

    Most of us would qualify by law. I would qualify by law. I’m a scary-looking guy as it is. Now I know I can be a scary-looking guy walking around with a gun.

    Now just imagine a bunch of scary-looking people walking around Lancaster with [highlight= yellow]guns. Is that the society of the future that you envision for Lancaster County? What a public service you have provided!

    Fortunately, few people read newspapers anymore — especially the Outdoors section. If people died from handgun violence because of your column’s information,would that bother you at all?



    Frank Spring

    Lancaster

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    Thanks you for such a good and non-biased article on an issue that many people should know about. I live in the city of Lancaster and I have a license to [highlight= yellow]carry a firearm. I have considered [highlight= yellow]open [highlight= yellow]carry but was concerned with the reaction of the general public and of the authorities.

    I am 55 years old with two grown children. I did not grow up in a gun family nor as a hunter. I do believe in the Second Amendment and the right of self defense. I do not believe 100 percent that just anyone should be able to own just any gun and that there should be a system to help both protect our rights but also to help screen out those that are not legally or mentally allowed to own and [highlight= yellow]carry a weapon.



    Wayne Weiderman

    Lancaster

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    Thank you for writing this article! I live in Berks County and I, too, [highlight= yellow]open [highlight= yellow]carry. I appreciate a journalist who is willing to challenge the stereotype of armed citizens as either criminals or paranoid, camouflage-wearing, anti-government rednecks. While I do admit to wearing camouflage on occasion, I am not paranoid and I believe firmly in the rule of law.



    Steve Custer

    Temple, Pa.

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    Thanks for the great gun-rights piece. I have my concealed permit and never realized it was legal to [highlight= yellow]open [highlight= yellow]carry here as well.

    I don’t [highlight= yellow]carry most of the time, but when I’m deep in the woods hiking with my wife, you can bet I’ll be packin!

    It was great to read someone in the paper mention Virginia Tech specifically banning [highlight= yellow]guns on campus and proclaiming everyone “safer” as a result.



    Jesse Rothacker

    Manheim

    Outdoors Editor, New Era:

    Thanks for writing the article. It wasvery informative as I have only lived a few months in Pennsylvania and was unaware of [highlight= yellow]open [highlight= yellow]carry.



    Isabel Lyman

    Manheirm Township

  11. #11
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    It's been interesting how much positive feedback I've recieved since this story ran about me. I was prepared for much worse, for sure. Thanks to Mike & John for this website, that gave me the information I needed to choose to OC!

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