By all accounts, this season’s ARA hamfest was very successful; as we were selling tickets to the event, I noticed that the parking lot was almost completely full. Not just some of the time, but almost all of the day!

As the forums were drawing to a close, and the auction began, it too seemed to be relatively successful.

There were about 15 operators who sat for the license exam, which ran until about 3p.

The ARA’s treasurer, Tim Keener, gave a quick rundown on the numbers on May 16 (Activities Meeting), and reported that we made a profit. This post will be updated with the exact report and amounts later on, so stay tuned for that.

We’s also liike to announce that 2023 was the last time t that the ARA plans to use the Washington County Agricultural Center; the reason is that Washington County determined earlier this year that rental rates needed to to go up by 125%!

It is a shame, really, because the Ag Center pretty much had everything that anyone could want for a hamfest – indoor, outdoor, parking, facilities… just a great location. If it is that good, why are we leaving? Well, we ran the numbers as if we were paying next year’s rate, and quickly determined that we would very likely have broken even, and possibly even lost a few bucks. It was also clear that to avoid losing money, we woiuld have had to raise ticket prices, and maybe even tailgate prices.

Because of all of those reasons we decided to start looking at other venues; we have a few in mind, and hope to have the location and price for next year nailed down soon.