Van Cleave acted as master of ceremonies in front of tables displaying one of the two prize firearms: a .45-caliber Para Ordnance PX745E semiautomatic handgun. He also unveiled a cake with a picture of Bloomberg in the frosting, saying: "These are sick people!"
Van Cleave, saying his group includes many retired military personnel and law enforcement officers, said he was glad to be in their company. They hung signs calling for the mayor's prosecution for sending agents to stores posing as legitimate buyers.
"We're sending a message to New York, and this message is going to Mr. Bloomberg: If you think you have a problem, if you think Virginia's gun dealers are violating the law . . . come talk to the state police," Van Cleave said. "Guns in the hands of decent, law-abiding citizens is a good thing. In my opinion, you can't have too many kinds of those guns."
"Amen!" someone shouted.