The Lakeland Center Gets Ready for 2-Day 'Preppers' Expo
The thriving subculture of "preppers" will be on display during the two-day event at The Lakeland Center. Preppers, also called survivalists, actively prepare for social catastrophe by building up caches of food and other supplies, creating self-sustaining food sources and teaching themselves military-style survival skills.
The gathering includes nationally known figures such as David Kobler, host of the Southernprepper1 channel on YouTube, and a medical duo called Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy, authors of "The Doom and Bloom Survival Medicine Handbook."
Classes will offer instruction in home butchering, small weapons disarmament and building an archery bow.
Though The Lakeland Center regularly hosts gun shows, Executive Director Mike LaPan said this is the first time the venue has hosted a gathering devoted to the prepper movement.
The expo is the second large event staged by Fortress Management Group, a company based in Brevard County. Co-owner Cindy Thompson doesn't like the labels "prepper" and "survivalist," though she acknowledges that many who attend the expo likely would accept those descriptions.
"Preppers and survivalists have gotten a very bad connotation," said Thompson, a onetime West Point cadet and now a National Rifle Association instructor.
"We don't even toss around ourselves very much (the descriptions) 'preppers' and 'survivalist.' I think for most people it's more about a way of life and reliance. ... One guy told me, 'I don't go by 'prepper'; I don't go by 'survivalist.' I go by 'realist.' "
Black Blade: If any here from Florida are looking for something to do this weekend. Here it is ...