Small-Town Store Has Big Heart for DU

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When Smyrna Sporting Goods opens at 9:30a.m., the regulars begin to gather. A half dozen or so hunting buddies meet at Brian Brown's store, which has been a fixture in the small Delaware community of Smyrna since 1954.

"We're in a 170-year-old building in the heart of downtown Smyrna," Brian says. "People enjoy the hometown atmosphere, being on a first-name basis, and knowing the products we sell."

Brian is an enthusiastic champion for Ducks Unlimited, and his store shows it. Customers and passersby are greeted with the DU duck head logo on window signs, above the door, and even laid in the concrete of the front steps. Enter the store and you'll find DU sprinkled throughout. And chances are, Brian, a longtime member of the Kent County DU chapter and a Diamond Life Sponsor, will be wearing a DU hat or shirt.

"The people involved with DU are top-notch and believe in what they do," Brian says. "I am proud to be a Delaware resident and proud of the influence this state has had within the DU family."

Smyrna Sporting Goods has been serving waterfowlers and deer hunters for more than 60 years. In addition to selling gear and talking ducks and deer with his customers, Brian facilitates gun orders for all Delaware DU chapters. He's also welcomed 11 DU presidents to his store over the years.

"We are very lucky to have Brian," says DU Senior Vice President Peter MacGaffin, a Delaware resident and hunter. "He does so many different things for the ducks and for DU."