POLITICS
05/06/2018 07:12 pm ET Updated May 07, 2018

It Was Protests, Peddling And Presidents At This Year's NRA Convention

Our photographer took in the divided scene at the gun group's annual meeting in Dallas.

Tens of thousands of National Rifle Association members descended on Dallas this week for the gun advocacy group’s 147th annual meeting ― once again with an assist from President Donald Trump

Ahead of the event, which ran from Thursday to Sunday, the NRA said that 80,000 members would be attending and billed it as the largest in the organization’s history. But outside the convention center, another crowd assembled to protest the NRA’s efforts to stifle gun control laws.

In the year since the last meeting, the U.S. had its deadliest mass shooting in recent history when a gunman killed 58 people and wounded hundreds in Las Vegas. And it saw a powerful uprising of young gun control advocates after a shooter gunned down 17 students and faculty members at a high school in Parkland, Florida

The meeting was also a chance for commerce, with vendors taking orders for firearms, and it gave Trump a chance to address the crowd for the fourth year in a row. This year, people lined up hours early to get into the arena where he regurgitated many of his favorite pro-gun talking points.

Take a look at photos from the annual event below:

  • Julia Heilrayne, a student at Austin High School, stands with a target painted on her head at a gun control rally o
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Julia Heilrayne, a student at Austin High School, stands with a target painted on her head at a gun control rally outside Dallas City Hall on Saturday.
  • Protesters march to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, where the NRA's annual meeting is being held, on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Protesters march to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, where the NRA's annual meeting is being held, on Friday.
  • Attendees of the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Attendees of the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
  • A speaker addresses the crowd at the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday near the association's annu
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A speaker addresses the crowd at the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday near the association's annual meeting.
  • The Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    The Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
  • A speaker addresses attendees at the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A speaker addresses attendees at the Dallas Stands Against the NRA rally on Friday.
  • Manuel Oliver, whose son, Joaquin, was killed at the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, this year, creates a mural at the
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Manuel Oliver, whose son, Joaquin, was killed at the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, this year, creates a mural at the Rally 4 Reform at Dallas City Hall on Saturday.
  • A mural on display at the Rally 4 Reform on Saturday commemorates victims of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A mural on display at the Rally 4 Reform on Saturday commemorates victims of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting.
  • Protesters march to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, where the NRA is holding its annual meeting, on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Protesters march to the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, where the NRA is holding its annual meeting, on Friday.
  • People line up hours early to get into the arena where President Donald Trump would address the crowd on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    People line up hours early to get into the arena where President Donald Trump would address the crowd on Friday.
  • Local Boy Scouts work volunteer positions at the knife-check booth where attendees could check in knives, free of c
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Local Boy Scouts work volunteer positions at the knife-check booth where attendees could check in knives, free of charge, before entering the arena were Trump would later speak and where weapons had been banned by the Secret Service days before.
  • A crowd watches a screen showing a live feed of Trump's speech on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A crowd watches a screen showing a live feed of Trump's speech on Friday.
  • A crowd watches a screen showing a live feed of Trump's speech on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A crowd watches a screen showing a live feed of Trump's speech on Friday.
  • Attendees file into the expo hall.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Attendees file into the expo hall.
  • A woman claps in response to a speech by Trump as she watches a live feed of the event on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A woman claps in response to a speech by Trump as she watches a live feed of the event on the expo floor Friday.
  • A man walks past a booth on the expo floor on Sunday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A man walks past a booth on the expo floor on Sunday.
  • A man holds his granddaughter as they explore the expo floor on Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A man holds his granddaughter as they explore the expo floor on Friday.
  • A handgun on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A handgun on the expo floor Friday.
  • A local Dallas family passes around a rifle on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A local Dallas family passes around a rifle on the expo floor Friday.
  • A display of shell casings on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A display of shell casings on the expo floor Friday.
  • Tim Oelklaus of Missouri holds up a display rifle on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Tim Oelklaus of Missouri holds up a display rifle on the expo floor Friday.
  • A television screen on the expo floor shows a live feed of Vice President Mike Pence's speech on the first day of the event.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A television screen on the expo floor shows a live feed of Vice President Mike Pence's speech on the first day of the event.
  • A man looks at a gun display on the first day of the NRA's annual meeting in Dallas.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A man looks at a gun display on the first day of the NRA's annual meeting in Dallas.
  • Attendees browse on the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Attendees browse on the expo floor Friday.
  • On the expo floor Friday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    On the expo floor Friday.
  • Economist and author John Lott Jr. gives his "War on Guns" seminar on Sunday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Economist and author John Lott Jr. gives his "War on Guns" seminar on Sunday.
  • Slade Jamieson, of Keller, Texas, examines a gun on the expo floor Saturday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Slade Jamieson, of Keller, Texas, examines a gun on the expo floor Saturday.
  • A man takes part in a virtual reality simulation on the expo floor Saturday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A man takes part in a virtual reality simulation on the expo floor Saturday.
  • A young boy yells, "Let freedom ring," as he rings a replica of the Liberty Bell on the expo floor on Sunday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    A young boy yells, "Let freedom ring," as he rings a replica of the Liberty Bell on the expo floor on Sunday.
  • Economist and author John Lott Jr. gives his "War on Guns" seminar on Sunday.
    Joseph Rushmore for HuffPost
    Economist and author John Lott Jr. gives his "War on Guns" seminar on Sunday.

ClarificationLanguage in this story has been amended to clarify that vendors take orders for gun purchases at the NRA convention; those orders are finalized via customers’ local gun dealers.

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