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Hamvention® Countdown: With 6 Months to Go, Plans Proceeding Apace at New Venue


With just 6 months to go until Hamvention® debuts at its new Greene County Fairgrounds and Event Center venue in Xenia, Ohio, May 19-21, General Chair Ron Cramer, KD8ENJ, and Dayton Amateur Radio Association (DARA) Board Member Mike Kalter, W8CI, assure that all is progressing smoothly. Cramer and Kalter made another appearance this week (November 16) on Amateur Radio Roundtable, hosted by Tom Medlin, W5KUB, to update progress on preparations for the all-new Hamvention. Cramer and Kalter said they continue to be bombarded with questions, concerns, and rumors regarding how the event will be staged.

“You have to remember, we’re starting from the ground up,” Cramer said. “So it’s taken a while to get things going.” He asked for patience from prospective visitors, but he and Kalter told Medlin that the vast all-volunteer team has everything well in hand and that plans are coming together. Both maintained that those attending Hamvention 2017 “will be very impressed.”

Cramer predicted parking would not be an issue, and that there would be plenty of room for the anticipated number of vehicles, with overflow parking available and transportation to the buildings housing the vendors and events from the parking areas, as needed.

Traffic and transportation logistics are being addressed, Cramer said, and Hamvention is working with four police departments as well as a professional traffic planner to ensure that all goes smoothly.

Cramer said Hamvention 2017 tickets will become available starting in December — a bit earlier than in past years. The cost of admission will rise by $2 from the 2016 price of $20 for advanced tickets and $25 for those purchased at the gate. But, he pointed out, there will be no parking charges on site.

The Hamvention website is yet to be updated to reflect the 2017 event, but Cramer and Kalter said that both indoor and outdoor layout maps will be made available online in advance of the show, and these will be included in the Hamvention program as well.

Kalter said he and Cramer continue to hear concerns about the outdoor flea market, which will be sited within the racing oval. Kalter said some prospective attendees worry that the grassy area will become muddy if it rains. “That is not true,” he assured viewers of the program. “They have a very nice drainage system there.” He said parking areas also are equipped with adequate drainage.

Hamvention also expects to provide Internet connectivity throughout the new venue, which encompasses more than 100 acres. Hamvention sponsor DARA has a 3-year commitment at the new venue, which has served primarily as home to agricultural fairs and events in the past. Hamvention announced in August that it would be relocating to Xenia, following the closure of Hara Arena, where the show took place for more than 50 years.

The Amateur Radio Roundtable show included a DX Engineering-produced video shot from a drone operated by Greg Ordy, W8WWV, and narrated by DX Engineering’s Tim Duffy, K3LR. 



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