Our former hometown Baton Rouge, the capitol city of Louisiana, has received national attention as the locale of Red Jacket Firearms, the Baton Rouge business that is the subject of the exciting hit TV show Sons of Guns on the Discovery Channel.
Baton Rouge ... site of the Sons of Guns TV Series on the Discovery Channel
(photograph by the author)
The TV series centers on Red Jacket Firearms which builds and sells custom weapons such as the AK-47, and also deals in classic and historic weaponry as well.
Will Hayden is the founder and owner of the shop, and his daughter Stephanie Hayden manages the office as Business Manager. Will, a native of Baton Rouge, has been building weapons since the age of 17.
After spending six years in the U.S. Marine Corps in the 1980s, Will opened a construction and refrigeration business. He later remodeled the front of his building and opened an Army surplus and firearms store as a side business.
That sideline quickly became a full time operation, and Red Jacket Firearms was born in 1999. Business boomed, and Will was approached about starring in a new reality show, later named Sons of Guns.
Besides Will and Stephanie Hayden, several other characters regularly appear on the show:
- Vincent Buckles, gunsmith
- Joe Meaux, gunsmith
- Charlie Watson, forensic firearms expert
- Glenn Fleming, welder
- Kris Ford, apprentice
For those of us that have lived in Baton Rouge for decades, we well know the location of the Red Jacket shop at 9653 Mammoth Avenue, near the intersection of Choctaw Drive and Monterrey Drive.
Louisiana is a popular setting for the movie industry, and several hit reality TV shows on the History Channel, Discovery Channel, A&E, CMT, and other cable networks.
The Bayou State has become a popular location featuring a diversity of towns and subjects for reality TV for three main reasons: 1) lucrative tax credits and incentives, 2) mild year-round climate, and 3) interesting, likable, friendly, real-world characters.
According to a report prepared by the Louisiana Office of Entertainment Industry Development, Louisiana has had five consecutive years of economic growth in the film and music industry.
The report also recognizes Louisiana as ranked third in film and television production nationwide behind only California and New York.