DAYTON/XENIA 2017 - Problems Solved - O.T. Humor

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My friend Ben N6MUF.. a fellow International Hamfest Junkie wrote the following:

Everyone was a bit upset by the news that the Dayton Hamvention was leaving their favorite "World City"  Dayton.

 Worries about....How is it going to be in Xenia.  It's only 80,000 sq ft vs 160,000 sq ft... No seminar rooms,  close to nothing...


Well....Your worries are over !!

 

The problem with Not Enough Exhibitor area is not a problem any more.

     1.  Flex Radio and Icom and Elad are all sharing one ( 1 ) booth. ( 9 ft. x 9 ft.) This will save time in making comparisons and all 3 companies will  only have to send 1/3 of their stand-people.

     2.  HRO and DX Engineering are doing the same.

     3.  Steppir and Buddy Pole are together.

      4.  Bob Heil and Radio-Sport and also buddying up.

     5.  Yaesu and Kenwood are no longer attending as they have nothing new and no customers.

     6.  Parking will be NO problem as now the parking lot ( former flea market in Dayton ) is freed up and the shuttle from 

Dayton to Xenia runs every 2 hours on the hour.  ( 1st bus at 10 am and last returning is 1500 )  Driving time is 1-1/2 hours

         and round trip is only $36.50.  A meal will be served on the bus for $16.95.if you a member of ARRL otherwise $24.95. 

     7.  Ajax Towing will be helping those stuck in the mud at the new flea market area

     8.  Good news for those who want food.  McDonalds in Cincinnati will make deliveries to Xenia if you place orders                  

 in advance with your prepaid HamVention ticket.  ( food will be waiting for you in Xenia for pick up )

      9.  No more Cow manure smells.  Xenia only does Hog and Chicken live stock shows.

     10.  Hotels should be booked no later than August 28, 2016 to assure you will get a room.  Please double or triple - up. 

          Xenia has no premium hotels such as Motel 6.  Linda Sues Spaghetti Diner only has 3 Tables so go to dinner before going to the show.

     11.  Conference rooms are not available so Seminars will be held out in the open.  Free Air Conditioning since it will be outdoors.. No Rain Checks given.    

     12.  Air Transportation to Xenia should be booked ASAP.  The Airport can only handle 8 flights a day.  1 incoming and 7 outgoing, crop duster flights should only be booked in emergency situations. ( remember...No bagage allowed on these flights.

      13.  Bring CASH as the Credit Card has not hit this part of the USA yet.

 OK,  get all ready for a good one in Xenia.  See u there!!

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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Posted 3 years ago

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SteveJ

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Why are people so critical of the new venue so far in advance of the first time it has even been there.
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Michael Coslo

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Mostly because it is a county fair/livestock show grounds.

Because it is now going to be mostly hamfest, and not that much convention. Hara was an unholy dump, but it had the ravaged appearance of a convention. 

I think it depends on one's outlook. If a person is happy with going to places like the Timonium Maryland Hamfest, Dayton - errrm, Green County fairgrounds will be just fine. 

But a lot of us, myself included are dreadfully disappointed.

The largest Building is the Assembly hall. Heat and A/C 70' by 170'.

The dining Hall is 65' by 60'. Heat and AC. Seats 150.

Harness Horse Stall - probably not useful for much

Livestock 1 150' by 160 No Heat or AC.  Pens are in place and used for Animal shows or sales. Cement floors. 

LiveStock 2 120' by 160' No heat or AC. Same as Livestock 1

Livestock 3  150' by 160' No heat or AC - apparently this building has removeable pens.

All three livestock buildings have show arenas and bleachers.

Probably the best part is that the flea market is planned for the infield of the racecourse. That sounds pretty good. 

Sounding good so far? This is a huge size reduction from Hara, and likewise a big change in the approach to Hamvention.

As well, Hamvention is/was an international event. People came from all over to attend. For myself, I drove about 9 hours each way, and spent a lot of money before ever entering Hamvention.  I'm not going to spend a couple thou just to be there - not counting new toys I buy -  for their new approach. 
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Michael Coslo

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Well done, Howard! 8^)
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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@SteveJ

Like Michael I am extremely disappointed that Dayton has pretty obviously decided to downgrade itself from the former Pigsty to an actual county fair site and no longer even have the pretense of being the major international HAM Radio Exposition it could have been.  I too spend at least $1K before toys to fly there and stay in hotels... so why waste my money on a third rate venue.

It is clearly NOT lack of Money as DARA earns typically a $750K annual profit and DARA is well endowed with funds but rather thinking very small.  It is that type of short sighted thinking that got the Midwest USA into trouble in the first place.

As I indicated previously, I go to hamfests all over the world every year.  I am a true Hamfest Junkie.. The major ones like Friedrichshafen and Tokyo and even Visalia are REAL Conventions in real Convention Centers.  They provide a world class showcase to demonstrate the latest equipment, first class seminar facilities, Air Conditioning, Real Food (instead of country fair pig slop) superb beer gardens and even great facilities for the Swap Meets..

The vendors I know all like the purchasing power of the hams attending Dayton and all will admit that they make a significant portion of their annual sales there.  But most also sign the lament "Anywhere But Dayton" because the general atmosphere is so depressed.

A number of my international friends have met me at Dayton.. Unless I warn them how incredibly bad the facilities are, they end up extremely disappointed.

DARA had the opportunity to reclaim the crown from Tokyo as the world's premier Hamfest.. But also they chose to got third rate...   I expect Friedrichshafen to become the second largest next year and Dayton a poor third at best.

It's going to be very hard to "Make America Great Again" if this kind of small minded thinking continues to prevail.. (NOT A POLITICAL COMMENT Hi Hi)

Maybe a show like Hamcation can pick up the slack...

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Gary L. Robinson

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What made Dayton Hamfest the largest hamfest in the world for some years was primarily their location (I-70 + I-75 intersection) AND having a large flea market. Dayton does NOT have (and probably never will have) a great glitzy convention center that ALSO has tons of open space outside for a flea market. There are a few good places that could be used IF they decided to NOT have a flea market BUT it appears they might not go that way. The next 2 DARA meeting may change or solidify that position. Stay tuned ...
So, they can become a NON flea market event in a classier place OR a flea market event with some vendors.
EIther way, the Dayton Hamfest attendance will never rise to level it has been in the past. Hara Arena (as old and as dumpy as it was) was the best it could be for what DARA was trying to do. Dayton is not a big enough town to have a place that is a spiffy, state of the art, convention center that can also do a big flea market (at the same location).
Though Dayton claims 15 million dollars (approx) in commerce from the Hamvention - the current city leaders seem MORE interested in being an immigrant sanctuary city (their words - not mine) than investing in other ways.
So, I think the days of their being the world's biggest ham fest are over - period.

---Gary
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W7NGA

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immigrant sanctuary vs 'ham radio - superfluous by most measures .. hobby'
dude - you've lost perspective
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Gary L. Robinson

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Maybe you just can't understand it ...
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Michael Coslo

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The Dayton Convention center isn't too bad a place http://www.daytonconventioncenter.com/dcc/facility-information

150,000 Square feet  of floor space with 77,000 square feet of Exhibition space. Now what that costs is unknown to me, but as they say - it is what it is. It would still be in Dayton, 
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Gary L. Robinson

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The Dayton Convention center is a good choice but as I see it - it still eliminates having a flea market which was a giant part of why many have come to Hamvention for decades. still, I would rather it go to the Convention center than the county fair grounds hihi. But without a big flea market it would still reduce the attendance a fair amount. And then, there is the question of how much more will it cost to have it there. All questions that will be asked, I am sure, at the upcoming DARA meetings.
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Peter K1PGV, Elmer

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Put the flea market at a separate location, and procide free shuttle busses between the two. Is this really such an unsolvable problem for DARA that they have to resort to a fairgrounds??

Peter
K1PGV
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Bob - W7KWS -

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Think for a moment about the disabled who rent those electric scooters. It's pretty hard to transport those scooters on the shuttle between two sites of a split Hamvention. This is but one example. There may be hundreds on thing like this that DARA has to take into account when picking a location.
(Edited)
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Peter K1PGV, Elmer

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So they'll have an easier time at the fairgrounds? I get that there are trade-offs to be made... And I love the fair as much as the next semi-rural guy. But unless I'm there for the sheep and the corn dogs, I'd really rather a nice venue.

We have a regional hamfest here in NH that's held at a fairgrounds. It's fine... But it's not suposed to be a premiere amateur radio event..

Peter
K1PGV
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Gary L. Robinson

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When the Dayton hamfest started I doubt that it was started with the intent to be a premier amateur radio event. It may have become one at some point - I'll leave that to others to debate.
I don't think a separate location for a flea market would work out all that well. I think DARA will have to decide what is important for THEM. Perhaps they already have or perhaps the next few meetings might change their minds when they get feedback from their membership and attendees. I think we will just have to wait to see what develops and all of us act accordingly.
If I had to choose (and if it were viable) I would go with the convention center without a flea market as oppose to the fairgrounds. It's directly in Dayton and it would probably help the Dayton economy more than the Greene county fairground site would. Or ... Maybe they could even host 2 events - one in each venue at separate dates and or seasons???
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Larry - WA7LZO

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If we ae going this route, I vote for moving Dayton to the Puyallup Fairgrounds! We've got clean bathrooms, too!
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Paul - WB5AGF

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Sounds like fun to me ... I've never been in Washington State (driving
on the south side of the Columbia River is the closest I've been and
that was years ago).

Is my(expired) passport sufficient or do I need a visa ?

( Is your electricity 50 or 60 Hz ? Will I need to get AC plug adapters ? )

- Paul, WB5AGF
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Larry - WA7LZO

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Electricity? Where do you find that? Around these parts, you need to have 9 of Elon's PowerWalls. Ever since Boeings moved their corporate HQ to Chicago, and Microsoft lost The Red Head, it's been all down hill, kind of like when we turned the lights out in 1969 when Boeings killed the SST.

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Jeff - G4IUA

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I have never visited Dayton as it is a long (and expensive) haul from the UK.  However, as Howard says, the Friedrichshafen fair is excellent in all ways.  The venue is immaculate.  The large fleamarket is all under cover, the food and beer are good and the town of Friedrichshafen itself is pleasantly small, clean, safe, friendly and a real 'coffee culture' sort of place right on Lake Constance, with Switzerland and Austria within view.  It might not be as big as Dayton was, but from all the reports I've read I doubt that 'Dayton #2' will compare.  Head on over to Europe next July - I'm sure it won't disappoint!

Jeff - G4IUA
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Larry - WA7LZO

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Or, head on down to Puyallup, WA! We got good cold beer here, clean bathrooms, and there's no human poop smell, as any such odors are way overshadowed by the smell of clean straw and nice farm animals.
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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The Dayton Flea Market has pretty much degenerated over the years into a collection of old broken garbage which the same guys buy and then sell back to each other year after year.  Anything that still works seems to be sold on EBay as they can get much better prices there.  [I might note that in my first few years at Dayton I used to buy and sell stuff in the flea market but no longer].  The 2016 Flea Market was but a small shabby shadow of the robust Flea Markets for yesteryear. 

So needless to say, I would strongly vote (if I had a vote) for a convention center environment for the Premier USA HAMFEST and let the Flea Market die a natural death the way Hara Arena has finally done.

OR. they can do what Friedrichshafen has done and move the flea market indoors into one of the Convention Center Rooms



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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Friedrichshafen. With Flea Market inside

P

Decent food courts

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Michael Coslo

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Is that first photo from Australia, Howard? Regardless - that's what I'm talkin' about! 
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Burt Fisher

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If you bother to post pictures take a minute and put them right side up
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Sorry Burt. But posted them from iPhone in correct orientation but somehow GetSatisfaction inverted them
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Lots of free booze

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Ernest - W4EG

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Howard,
 You could have rotated this photo so we can see them !
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Bill W2PKY

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They turn heads. much pun intended.
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Sorry Ernest But posted them from iPhone in correct orientation but somehow GetSatisfaction inverted them
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Jim

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I just went to the Fairgounds to get a good look. All I can say, they are better visionaries than me. I wish them the very best at pulling this off.
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Describe the fairgrounds
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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@Michael
I have over 500 pictures from Freidrichshafen and a number videos. Earlier I posted links to the seminars for the SDR Academy which was held in a beautiful professional grade seminar room with air conditioning.

Real Beer Garden



Seminar room   - Gerald giving a lecture

(Edited)
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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As you can see from these pictures Hamfest's do not need to operate out of pigsty's  to be successful....
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Here is a link to the Software Defined Radio Academy at Friedrichshafen

https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/software-defined-radio-academy-recordings 


Shows how nice the lecture facilities were compared to Dayton Sweat Bath's


Gotta find some of my Tokyo Hamfest Pictures so people can get an idea of how pathetic the USA Hamfest scene is...

(Edited)
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Michael Coslo

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THe Hamfest scene is definitely dying. The thing is,  some of it's affecionado's translate that to Ham Radio dying. Which really isn't the case. I'd hazard a guess that most younger Hams don't give a whit about flea markets, thinking of them pretty much the same as the roadsiide flea markets. 

I think the point in all of this is that venues tend to get either better or they get worse. And does anyone among us believe that going to the fairgrounds is getting better?

While many among us would complain about Dayton, yet continue attending, I believe this Gives DARA a false impression that we'll attend the fairgrounds as they transition to that venue. Complain? Sure - but we'll fund them just like before. 

When in fact, I have to say that this gives me the chance to bargain with my better half - instead of spending the money in Dayton on housing and food and travel, it might just give me the leverage to trade up to a 6700!
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Hamfests are NOT dying. Attendance at Tokyo, Visalia, Friedrichshafen set records each year. They are held in clean attractive spacious Convention Centers.

However Flea Markets are dying. The good stuff gets sold on EBay/EHam. The old garbage goes to Flea Markets Most people don't want that old garbage any more.

BTW we get the Visalia Convention Center rent FREE every year in exchange for a guaranteed number of hotel room nights. Many convention centers strike similar deals.
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Michael Coslo

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I'm mixing the terms between hamfests and flea markets.   I agree with you about the flea market aspect. I've seen some of that stuff at the first Dayton Hamvention I ever went to, and the last. 
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Peter K1PGV, Elmer

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KE9vV has a nice write-up about the new location on his blog. Including venue pictures:

https://ke9v.net/2016/08/03/hamventio...

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