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Gun show moved because of Zimmerman?

NEED TO KNOW
  • Organizers claim a planned gun show in Orlando had to be moved after they announced George Zimmerman would be 'special guest'
  • Event space 'caved over threats from anti-Zimmerman individuals,' according to gun show
  • Event will reportedly be held at different location
Gun show moved because of Zimmerman?

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Organizers of an Orlando, Florida, gun show say their event has been moved to a new location this weekend after their original event space canceled on them for inviting George Zimmerman as its "special guest."

"They requested our special guest, Mr. George Zimmerman, not be allowed entry and we complied for the sake of our vendors," the New Orlando Gun Show posted on its website. "Later, the Majestic [which owns the event space] 'caved' over threats from anti-Zimmerman individuals and completely shut down the event."

The gun show organizers told HLN affiliate WKMG that the event will now be held at their Orlando shop, which is called The Arms Room. HLN reached out to the owner of The Arms Room and has yet to hear back.

HLN also left phone messages for and sent e-mails to the Majestic, which have not been returned. The event center posted about the gun show on its Facebook page Thursday and implied that the show was still on since Zimmerman wouldn't be making an appearance.

"Recent social media postings have been made, stating that Gorge [sic] Zimmerman will be a host at this weekends [sic] upcoming Gun Show at Majestic Event Center," the Facebook post said. "These postings were not approved by Majestic Event Center and were made in error by an outside party. George Zimmerman will not be on property during this event."

WKMG was also reporting Thursday night outside the facility, where the marquee continued to promote the event.

Read more: Zimmerman's new 'Angie' art draws scrutiny

Mike Piwowarski, one of the show organizers, spoke to WKMG and said he has a year-long contract with the Majestic.

"The event center asked us to do a few things when they found out Mr. Zimmerman was present: pull down posts, pull down announcement that he was going to be there," said Piwowarski. "We did all of that when they asked us to do it. They rescheduled the event. Then they later went on to cancel it again, after we complied with all of their requests."

The Arms Room posted a picture to its Facebook page Monday featuring Zimmerman with the caption, "We had a friend stop by the shop recently."

That photo was posted Thursday morning to the @TherealGeorgeZ Twitter account, which appears to be run by Zimmerman. Along with the photo was this message: "A big shout out to my friends! See you all at the gun show this weekend!"

The account later goes on to tweet that the Majestic has violated Zimmerman's rights by saying he won't be allowed on the property. By Friday afternoon, the account started tweeting about the gun show's new location.

Gallery: Zimmerman’s trove of deadly weapons revealed

Zimmerman is certainly no stranger to controversy. The 30-year-old sparked a heated nationwide discussion of race as well as a debate over Florida's "stand your ground" law after he shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in 2012. Zimmerman, who was a neighborhood watch captain at the time, had a confrontation with the unarmed African-American teen after calling police to report a suspicious person. He later told police he shot Martin in self-defense.

Zimmerman went on trial for second-degree murder in Martin's death and was acquitted by a six-person jury in 2013.

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