Author Topic: NEAR-Fest XXVI Schedule of Events  (Read 3912 times)

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Offline W1RC

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NEAR-Fest XXVI Schedule of Events
« on: October 04, 2019, 12:07:00 PM »
NEAR-Fest XXVI Schedule of Events   

Friday, October 11th.

6:00 AM: Fairgrounds opens for Blue (Staff) and Yellow (Commercial) Vendors ONLY.  Commercial buildings open and set up commences. 

8:00 AM: Fairgrounds opens for Clubs & Associations passholders only to occupy their traditional spaces.  NO "FOR SALE" ITEMS DISPLAYED OR SELLING IS PERMITTED UNTIL 9:00AM!

9:00 AM: Pre-Paid Entry, opens for Advance ticket and RED passholders only.  Once the Pre-Paid entry line has entered the General Admission line will enter.  Flea Market and Tailgating buying and selling commences.  Please note our flea market parking policy:

This is the ENTERTAINMENT BUILDING, see map for location.

Forums, Seminars and Lectures
Forums Director Mitch Stern,

11:00AM: ARRL Forum: Michael Raisbeck, K1TWF, ARRL New England Vice Director. Join our New England Division Vice Director as he updates us on what is happening at the ARRL. The League had a Board meeting this summer and Mike will share what transpired. What is happening with new proposed ham radio rules? What is the ARRL doing about promoting amateur radio? Where will we be in five years time? All these and more are possible questions which can be discussed! (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

12:00 PM: Tower Safety - An Issue of Great Urgency for Amateur Radio - Jim Idelson K1IR. Come learn the three simple things every ham must do to dramatically reduce the deadly risks of tower work. Recent tragic events including the loss of our friend, Joe K1JGA, and the serious injuries sustained by Mike K1EEE drove a full investigation of amateur radio tower fatalities in the US over the past 20 years. The results of the research are disturbing, but they also show us exactly what we need to do to eliminate this problem in our community. (Located in the Entertainment Building). (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

1:00 PM:Radio Restoration - Chuck Hurley K1TLI. Join us for a discussion of radio equipment restoration, with focus on Johnson and Collins gear. We will also talk about the availability of custom-made multi-section electrolytic can capacitors to keep your equipment original. (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

2:00 PM: Grounding: Magic or Exact Science? - Steve Kercel AA4AK. Effective grounding is the result of the art of engineering judgment. The key problem is that no matter how big the disaster for which you design, a bigger one can happen. Even worse, there are four conflicting problems that are each solved by burying metal in the ground. Worst of all, there is no exact scientific description of either the problems or the solutions. What is a ham to do? (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

3:00: How to Be a Super Ham Operator - Mitch Stern W1SJ. Whether you are an old buzzard or a Johnny novice, you strive to be a better operator to work lots of other ham stations. Or do you? Are you an old timer and have lost interest? Or are you a new comer and have no clue what to do next. Our forum today will help build excitement to get on the air and have a load of fun. (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

4:30 PM: R-390A and German HRO Fun - George Rancourt K1ANX. We will once again share experience with bringing back to life the R-390 - a remarkable series of radios that, introduced in the early 1950?s, still holds its own against most of the radios available today!  In addition we will take a close look at the German HRO receivers. The HRO was a receiver produced by National which was instrumental in helping to receive and break German coded messages. It was so good, Siemens in Germany built copies of it during World War II, which we will carefully look at. (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

7:00 PM: NEAR-Fest's Legendary Ad-Hoc "Ham-Jam Session" (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

For full details see

Saturday, October 12th.

10:00 AM: The History of Heathkit and Restoration Economics - Paul Topolski W1SEX. We will explore how Heath became a major player in the electronics and ham radio industries after World War II. In addition, we will learn about the roles of the GI Bill and how amateur radio played a part in making Heath and so many hams, electronic technicians, and engineers successful. Finally, we will find out why Heath products are still serving to teach electronics and why they are the easiest and economical products to restore. This will be a fact-filled presentation with plenty of time for Q&A. (Located in the Entertainment Building, see map)

Licensing Examinations

10:00 AM:Volunteer Exam Session conducted by Bruce Anderson, W1LUS and the NEAR-Fest VE Team  The exam session is located in the Meeting Room (in the Arts & Crafts Building) right across from the flagpole.  The entrance is around the back of the building (see map)

The Volunteer Examination session begins at 10:00 sharp.  Be sure to have two forms of identification (one with photo), original and one copy of your Amateur license (if you have one), documentation and $15.00 exam fee ready.  For more information on the Volunteer exams or if you are a ARRL accredited VE wishing to help, please contact the VE Coordinator at  Despite what it says on the ARRL Web site, pre-registration is not required.  Just show up and give it your best shot.  Try the higher level exams even if you don't feel you are ready - you never least you'll know what to expect the next time.    Good luck!

Closing Ceremony

2:00 PM: Closing Ceremony, Awards and Door Prize Drawing.  The Grand Prize this time is an ICOM IC-7300 which is a very much sought-after radio.  Runner up to the Grand Prize is a dual band Digital (DMR) and analog portable radio. (Located in the Relaxation Grove, see map)

More than simply a prize drawing, this is the time we honor individuals, present updates to the NEAR-Fest mission, and provide a little insight as to what lies ahead. See a list of past LIFETIME PASS recipients:

We shall also have a brief remembrance for Joe Arezaga, K1JGA, who became a Silent Key in July when the tower he and Mike, K1EEE, were dismantling collapsed under them.  This happened less than a mile from the Fairgrounds.....

See you all at Deerfield bright and early Friday morning!


Mitch Stern, W1SJ,
Forums Chairman