The Maine Open Carry Association will hold a picnic on Thompson Island in Acadia National Park on July 11 to protest a new state law that limits the possession of firearms in the park.

Under the law, which takes effect July 12, a gun is allowed in the park if:

–It is carried by a qualified current or retired law enforcement officer.

–It is in a motor vehicle and rendered temporarily inoperable or packed away so it cannot be used immediately.

–It is concealed and carried by a person who has a concealed weapons permit.

The Legislature passed the law in April, after a federal law took effect in February that allows owners to take firearms into national parks as long as state law doesn’t say otherwise.

Sen. Dennis Damon, D-Trenton, had proposed a bill that would have outlawed all firearms in the park, which was the state’s policy before the new federal law took effect.

The picnic hosted by the Maine Open Carry Association starts at 1 p.m.

“The event will be typical everyday Americans showing that there is no reason for there to be an open-carry ban in Acadia,” said Shane Belanger, the association’s founder. “We finally got the right to carry in national parks, then our rights have been trampled upon.”

Picnickers should bring their own food. For more information, visit