Author Topic: A Bit of Hosstraders History.....  (Read 5890 times)

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Offline W1RC

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A Bit of Hosstraders History.....
« on: April 28, 2007, 06:13:38 AM »
THE NEW NEARFEST
by Mitch W1SJ

(Stolen from the Radio Amateurs of Northern Vermont (RANV) Newsletter)

To loosely quote Mark Twain, reports of Hosstraders' demise have been greatly unfounded. After a long and flowing eulogy last month, Hosstraders has been resurrected as Nearfest, short for New England Amateur Radio Festival.

Mike W1RC, who was in our area for a number of years, got together with a few conspirators to continue the proud tradition of Hosstraders. Mike has probably logged more time in hamfests than anyone else and knows all too well what makes a good Hamfest work.

Hosstraders has had a long and storied history. It premiered at Seabrook starting in 1973 for a few years, moving to the Deerfield Fair for a 16 year run in 1976. It was during this time that the Hamfest grew in size and stature. Throughout most of those years, the weather was absolutely perfect causing some to think that the organizers had a connection with the guy upstairs. Unfortunately, some of the shenanigans of the attendees did not sit well with the Fair committee and we were exiled for a year to the Kingston Fair. Unlike the tree covered Deerfield site, Kingston more closely resembled a dump. That fall, it rained and snowed with a vengeance. Everyone was very happy when we were allowed to return to Deerfield the next year.

After a few more years, it wasn't possible to go back to Deerfield, so the Hamfest moved to the Rochester Fair in 1993. This was affectionately known as Rainchester, since that was the prevailing weather. In 2001, we welcomed the move to the Hopkinton Fair, which is much like the Deerfield site.

Nearfest will mark a return to the Deerfield Fair site where many of the old Hamfest goers have fond memories. There are two new items. Youngsters will get in for free (I wonder if that was copied from a longstanding Milton tradition). The Fair requests that no alcohol be permitted, which means that we will have to have fun without the firewater.

Since the Fair requires prepayment of a large sum of money which doesn't exist, tickets will be sold in advance of the event which will allow the purchaser early entrance. Mike will be at the April meeting and will have plenty of tickets available for sale.

A very important and beloved ham radio event has returned to us. Make sure it continues by lending your support.