Upcoming Amateur Radio Conventions Focus on Learning and Youth

08/12/2022
Two major amateur radio events in August will host divisional conventions for the ARRL, the National Amateur Radio Association®. August 20 and 21, the Huntsville Hamfest will host the ARRL Southeast Division convention at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Alabama. On August 26 and 28, the Northeast HamXposition will host the combined ARRL New England and Hudson Division conventions at the Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel & Trade Center in Marlborough, Massachusetts.

“Both conventions include an exceptional amount of programming to encourage and instruct radio amateurs in a variety of interests,” said ARRL Education and Learning Manager Steve Goodgame, K5ATA. Goodgame, who used his recent experience as a school teacher to help high school students earn their ham radio licenses, will take part in both events. He will lead forums to share ways to engage young people and offer tools and tips for approaching schools about including amateur radio in their programs and programs.

The Huntsville Hamfest will also feature a youth fair where young and future hams can participate in hands-on activities and demonstrations, including kit building, fox hunting (find the hidden transmitter) and opportunities to pass on air.

Other convention forums will cover topics aimed at inspiring attendees to become more active and involved in amateur radio. Huntsville Hamfest forums include “Arduino: The Next Generation,” featuring ARRL author Glen Popiel, KW5GP; “Grounding and Bonding,” with ARRL editor and author Ward Silver, N0AX; “Fox Hunting 101,” with co-presenters Joe Domaleski, KI4ASK, and Mary Catherine Domaleski, KI4HHI, and “Kit Building Techniques for Success,” presented by ARRL Manual contributor Joe Eisenberg, K0NEB. Eisenberg is also the Saturday Grand Banquet speaker at the Northeast HamXposition.

A similar range of forums have been organized for the Northeast HamXposition, including “How to Troubleshoot Radio Interference”, “Linux in Your Ham Shack” and “Playing Radio ‘Outside'”.

The ARRL will have exhibits at both conventions, where attendees can connect with representatives from the membership program and elected volunteers from the board and field organization. ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR, and CEO David Minster, NA2AA, will attend Huntsville Hamfest. Minster will deliver the keynote on Saturday morning at the Northeast HamXposition.

The convention’s showrooms will also include the participation of equipment manufacturers and dealers – an opportunity for attendees to browse and purchase the latest amateur radio equipment and accessories in person. Confirmed exhibitors for Huntsville Hamfest include ABR Industries, BridgeCom Systems, Diamond® Antenna, DX Engineering, Elecraft, FlexRadio Systems, GigaParts, Ham Radio Outlet, Icom America, MFJ Enterprises, N3ZN Keys, RT Systems, SteppIR Communication Systems and Yaesu USA. Exhibits at Northeast HamXposition will include Elecraft, Ham Radio Outlet, Momobeam, and Quicksilver Radio Products, among others. Both conventions include a flea market.

Audrey McElroy, KM4BUN, an 18-year-old student who recently started her studies at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), will receive the 2022 Bill Pasternak WA6ITF Memorial Amateur Radio Newsline Young Ham of the Year Award at Huntsville Hamfest. In July, the ARRL Foundation awarded McElroy a $25,000 scholarship, sponsored by Amateur Radio Digital Communications (ARDC).

Proceeds from the Northeast HamXposition go to the FEMARA Scholarship Fund, which helps students attend a college or trade school of their choice. The scholarships are administered by the ARRL Foundation Scholars Program.

Visit the official convention websites for advance tickets and a full list of activities:

  • Huntsville Hamfest, hosting the ARRL Southeast Division Convention; Huntsville, Alabama | August 20 – 21, 2022

  • Northeast HamXposition, hosting the ARRL New England and Hudson Division conventions; Marlborough, Massachusetts | August 26 – 28, 2022

A list of all ARRL-sanctioned hamfests and conventions is posted at www.arrl.org/hamfests and includes these upcoming events:

  • QSO Today Virtual Ham Expo (online event) | September 17 – 18, 2022. ARRL is a partner of QSO Today.

  • Superfest HRO, hosting the ARRL Central Division Convention; Milwaukee, Wisconsin | September 23 – 24, 2022

  • Red River Hamfest, hosting the ARRL Dakota Division convention; West Fargo, North Dakota | September 24, 2022

  • ARRL Rocky Mountain Division Convention, Cheyenne, Wyoming | October 7 – 9, 2022

  • Pacificon hosting the ARRL Pacific Division Convention; San Ramon, California | October 14 – 16, 2022

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