2016 ARRL National Convention
at Orlando HamCation®
February 12, 13, 14 -- 2016

Convention TicketsBanquet TicketsTravel & AccomodationsBackgroundARRL-sponsored ForumsExhibit & Activities Guide (PDF)

Where: Central Florida Fair and Expo Park, 4603 West Colonial Drive, Florida 32808

Official websites:

Convention Tickets:

Banquet Tickets, Saturday February 13, 2016: Order Now


! ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio®, welcomes all members and friends to the 2016 ARRL National Convention in Orlando, Florida, February 12-14, 2016. The convention will mark the 70th anniversary of HamCation®—one of the largest annually-held gatherings of radio amateurs in the US.

Orlando HamCation® is sponsored by the Orlando Amateur Radio Club, an ARRL-affiliated radio club, and is supported by volunteers from radio clubs throughout the region. In past years, HamCation® has received regular sanctioning as the ARRL Southeastern Division Convention. In 2014, HamCation® was designated as one of six ARRL Regional Centennial Events—helping celebrate ARRL’s centennial year.

HamCation® is held on the grounds of the Central Florida Fair and Expo Park in Orlando—an 87-acres, lakefront fairgrounds. The published gate figure for 2015 was +14,000 (all three days).

The convention features indoor vendor exhibits, an outdoor flea market, swap, tailgaters, and many food concession stands (something for everyone!). There is plenty of free parking. Onsite RV parking with hookups is available (reservations required). In 2015, the convention sponsored 28 forums covering topics in Amateur Radio technology, public service, and education. ARRL Volunteer Examiners sponsor Amateur Radio license examination sessions on Saturday (morning and afternoon test sessions). A special event Amateur Radio station, call sign K1AA, will be setup and operating from the fairgrounds—inviting attendees for some on-air fun.

For ARRL’s part, the national convention will feature ARRL EXPO—a large assembly of ARRL-sponsored exhibits and program representatives. Several ARRL-sponsored presentations and forums will be given. On Saturday evening (February 13, 2016)—a 2016 ARRL National Convention Banquet will be held at the nearby Highland Manor in Apopka, Florida. The banquet dinner, program (to be announced), and the venue’s charming backdrop promise to make this an unforgettable event for ARRL members, their families, and friends. Banquet tickets will be $60 each, and includes transportation from the fairgrounds and some of the nearby hotels. Order banquet tickets directly from ARRL.

The HamCation® website includes details for convention tickets and information about forums, exhibits (including information for vendors and tailgaters), testing, travel, and preferred hotels with special rates. Convention tickets are $13 in advance; or $15 at the gate. Each ticket includes convention admission for all three days. The fairgrounds can accommodate recreational vehicles within walking distance to the main exhibit buidlings. RVers should use the reservation form available on the HamCation® website. Golf carts are used to help shuttle attendees, including those requiring mobility assistance, between areas of the fairgrounds.

Orlando, Florida is a favorite vacation destination. Consider extending your convention trip to include the popular Orlando-based theme parks, attractions, outdoor adventures, and dining. Many major cities offer non-stop flights to Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Sanford Orlando International Airport (SFB). Plan your trip to Orlando at

Interested parties will find complete details for the 2016 ARRL National Convention at For information about ARRL and Amateur Radio, visit and

Use this handy guide to find ARRL-sponsored activities, exhibits and program representatives. ARRL EXPO is a large exhibit area located in the vendor buidling.

ARRL Store Visit the HUGE ARRL bookstore to purchase popular ARRL publications, join, renew or extend your ARRL membership, and pick up official ARRL merchandise.

  • FREE Gift when you join, renew, or extend your ARRL membership at the convention.
  • FREE 2016 ARRL National Convention Button!

2016 National Parks On The Air – Get your official gear for this all-year-long ARRL operating event celebrating the centennial of the US National Park Service. Official T-shirts, pins, hats, mugs, posters and other merchandise will be available.

ARRL Development and ARRL Foundation. Learn how you can help strengthen ARRL’s work on behalf of Amateur Radio by participating in the Diamond Club, earning your way to the prestigious ARRL Maxim Society, contributing to the Spectrum Defense Fund, the Legislative Issues Advocacy Fund, the Education & Technology Fund, the W1AW Endowment, the Historic Preservation Fund, and joining the Legacy Circle by including ARRL in your estate plans. Information will be available about The ARRL Foundation and its more than 75 annual scholarships and grants for Amateur Radio groups working to promote Amateur Radio and involve young people in Amateur Radio activities.

Public Service

ARRL Education & Technology Program

Radiosport and DXCC – DXCC Card Checking; ARRL Contests and Awards; QSL Bureau; the ARRL Logbook of the World (LoTW)

ARRL Field Organization Volunteers – Visit this gathering area for ARRL Field Organization networking, hosted by the ARRL Southeastern Section.

ARRL-sponsored Forums (please confirm forum schedule in HamCation Program)



ARRL Member Forum
Moderator: Doug Rehman K4AC, ARRL Director--Southeastern Division
Over 168,000 ARRL members comprise the largest national Amateur Radio association in the world. ARRL publishes the popular monthly journal QST, coordinates an extensive all-volunteer field organization, and serves members as Amateur Radio's representative voice in regulatory and legislative matters. Hear from local and national ARRL officials on key areas of membership interest. Find out how ARRL supports dozens of ways to get involved and get on the air. Members and prospective members are all welcome!


The “Sounds” of Amateur Radio
Presenter: Dan Henderson, N1ND, ARRL Staff
With the advances in technology you never quite know what you might encounter when you tune across the bands. Is that a new modulation technique being heard? Perhaps it is new, non-amateur technology that is a form of noise pollution on the Amateur Radio bands? This presentation will include sound bites of many sounds you will hear on the air and give you a chance to determine what is the source of “that funny noise”.


National Parks on the Air: Portable Operating during the NPS Centennial
Presenters: Sean Kutzko, KX9X & Norm Fusaro, W3IZ – ARRL Staff
2016 is the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service. To help celebrate, ARRL created National Parks on the Air, a year-long on-air event to encourage activity from all 409 National Park Service administrative units across the country. Come learn how to take part in this program and see some of America’s finest natural and historic landmarks.


ARES: Thinking Outside the Box
Presenter: Mike Corey, KI1U, ARRL Emergency Preparedness Manager
As Amateur Radio and ARRL move into a second century, it is clear that ARES® (Amateur Radio Emergency Service®) must adapt to meet current and future needs of our communities, served agencies, and partners. Building off of lessons learned we can approach a 21st century ARES program by looking at what we can do internationally, nationally, locally and as individuals to make sure Amateur Radio and ARES continues to be relevant and meets the needs of those we serve.

QST Product Review: What Do All Those Numbers Mean?
Presenter: Bob Allison, WB1GCM, Senior Test Engineer, ARRL Laboratory
The most frequently asked question the ARRL Lab is asked is, “What radio should I buy?” Bob Allison, WB1GCM, ARRL Senior Test Engineer is not permitted to answer that question, but he can certainly point you in the right direction. He will explain the key transmitting and receiving tests that are performed at the Lab and what all those numbers mean that are shown in QST Product Review articles. Terms such as Two-tone Third Order Intermodulation Distortion Dynamic Range, Blocking Gain Compression Dynamic Range and Reciprocal Mixing Dynamic Range can be intimidating or confusing. Bob will explain these in simple terms, as well as some of the transmitting tests. Why is low Phase Noise Important? Bob will explain, and in an entertaining way.

ARRL Youth Fox Hunt
Larry Kendall, K6NDL, Instructor, ARRL Teachers Institute on Wireless Technology
Young radio amateurs (school-aged and college students) are invited to come explore the basics of radio direction finding as we hunt for hidden radio transmitters...a "Fox Hunt!" We will use directional antennas to hunt down secret transmitters. 

Other Related Activities and Information:

THANK YOU! ARRL expresses its gratitude to 2016 Orlando HamCation®, the Orlando Amateur Radio Club, and all the volunteers and radio clubs supporting the 2016 ARRL National Convention in Orlando, Florida.


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