Michigan QSO Party 2016

michigan-county-mapOne of the highlights of the year for me is the Michigan QSO Party, held on the third Saturday of April each year. It’s sponsored by the Mad River Radio Club and brings the spotlight to the Great Lake State.

Each year I try to do something a bit different – after all, the county I live in (Oakland) is one of the most active counties. I’ve tried in the past to get out and activate another county or help out another operation. This year, I did fewer than a hundred QSOs in a couple hours from home, way down in the pack in the single-op low power category, but spent most of my time at Michigan State University’s club station, W8SH.

The MSU club station is improving its antenna farm with help from the MSU Alumni Association and has installed new beams, verticals and wire antennas on the roof of the Engineering Building on campus. The club also has a few new members who have caught the “radio bug” and enjoy operating. The students did a great job on the SSB station and a few of us alumni manned the CW station. Together we put over 400 QSOs in the log for fourth place in the multi-multi category and were able to outscore our cross-state rival, W8UM, to reclaim the Ol’ Michigan Log.

Next year’s MIQP will be April 15, 2017 from noon to midnight EDT (1600z to 0400z April 16). Be sure to join us on the air and see how many of Michigan’s 83 counties you can log.