A Guide to June 2023 Ham Radio Contests

If you’re counting down the days to ARRL Field Day 2023 (June 24-25) and are looking for ways to stay active until the big weekend, June has you covered with some good opportunities to hone your skills and maybe come out on top—plus the chance to share your love of ham radio with a young person in your life. Here are a few June highlights, plus one very special event to kick off July:

ARRL International Digital Contest: June 3, 1800Z to June 4, 2400Z. From the ARRL, here’s the contest’s objective: “Amateurs worldwide contact and exchange QSO information with other amateurs using any digital mode (excluding RTTY) that supports the 4-digit Grid Square exchange—attended operation only—on the 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, 10 and 6 meter bands (Technicians are limited per FCC Rules to the 10 and 6 meter bands). Any station may work any other station. Stations may only be worked once per band, regardless of mode. Automated operation is not permitted—each claimed contact must include contemporaneous direct initiation by the operator on both sides of the contact.” Read the complete rules here.

KANHAM Contest: June 3, 0600Z to June 4, 0600Z. The object of this 12th annual CW/SSB contest is for “amateurs around the world to contact as many other amateurs in as many Japan prefectures as possible. Read the complete rules here. Japan is made up of 47 local entities known as prefectures—government bodies larger than villages, towns, and cities.

PVRC Reunion: June 3, 0000Z to 0159Z and June 4, 0000Z to o159Z. This annual event hosted by the Potomac Valley Radio Club welcomes both PVRC members and non-members to participate in two, two-hour SSB/CW sessions centered on the “47s” to celebrate the founding of PVRC in 1947. The club’s mission is to promote excellence in radiosport by:

  • Competing and winning in club competition
  • Stimulating the development of operating and technical skills
  • Sharing information and knowledge
  • Attracting, mentoring, and supporting new contesters
  • Developing a spirit of camaraderie and fun

Read much more about the Potomac Valley Radio Club here.

Portugal Day Contest: June 10, 1200Z to June 11, 1200Z. This SSB/CW 80-10M event, sponsored by the Redo dos Emissores Portuguesses, is held annually in honor of Portugal Day. Portugal Day commemorates the life of poet and national literary hero Lus de Cames, who died June 10, 1580. He is most remembered for his epic poem about Portuguese history and achievements, Os Lusiadas. This National Day of Portugal is celebrated in communities around the globe, including several U.S. cities. The contest is open to hams worldwide. Check out the rules here.

ARRL June VHF Contest: June 10, 1800Z to June 12, 0259Z. For amateurs in the U.S. and Canada to work as many amateur stations in as many different 2 degree x 1 degree Maidenhead grid squares as possible using authorized frequencies above 50 MHz. All legal modes are permitted.

VK Shires Contest: June 10, 0000Z to 2359Z. Per the contest website, the objectives of this CW/SSB contest, sponsored by the Wireless Institute of Australia, are for amateurs around the world to contact as many “VK shires as possible in the contest period. VK amateurs are to work the world including VK, whilst the rest of the world can only work VK.”

Cookie Crumble QRP Contest: June 11, 1700Z to 2200Z. From W3ATB’s website, “The Cookie Crumble Contest is a fun QRP contest inspired by the popularity of Emily Saldana’s–WC3R (formerly KB3VVE)–chocolate-chip cookies during the 2016 ARRL National Parks On The Air (NPOTA) event. Emily, for the rest of time, will be known as the Cookie Queen–a moniker given to her by one of the NPOTA participants.” For a taste of what to expect and how to request your Cookie Crumble number, visit the contest’s official web page.

SMIRK Contest: June 17, 0000Z to June 18, 2359Z. Hams from around the world will be gathering on the air for SMIRK’s (Six Meter International Radio Klub) annual tribute to the “Magic Band.” From the group’s website: “It’s loads of fun. You can meet SMIRK members or become a SMIRK member during this contest. Just call ‘CQ SMIRK’ and you are sure to get some answers.”

Need to prepare? Read this OnAllBands blog post, The Hows and Whys of Operating on Two Meters or Six During the Summer Months” by Sean Kutzko, KX9X. Plus, you’ll find loads of station upgrades for 6M operation at, including Butternut Antenna add-on kitHF+6M linear amplifiersantennas, and transceivers.

ARRL Kids Day: June 17, 1800Z to 2359Z. Here’s a great chance to introduce a son, daughter, or grandchild to the thrill of ham radio. Why not let the young people in your life experience the same excitement you felt when making your first QSOs? ARRL Kids Day is also an important time to remind ourselves that the future of ham radio rests in getting youth pumped up about the fun and practical aspects of this great hobby. Later this month we’ll be featuring a post on ways to get young people excited about ham radio.

All Asian DX Contest, CW: June 17, 0000Z to June 18, 2400Z. Sponsored by the Japan Amateur Radio League, this annual event is for both Asian and non-Asian stations making CW QSOs on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, and 10 meters. The All Asian DX, SSB contest will take place on September 2-3.

Stew Perry Topband Challenge: June 17, 1500Z to June 18, 1500Z. Hams can enter this annual 160 meter, CW-only contest as single operator or multi-operator; high, low or QRP power. High power is 1,500 watts output or whatever you can legally run in your country, whichever is less. Low power is 100 watts or less output. QRP is 5 watts or less, per the Stew Perry website. The challenge uniquely awards QSO point values based on distance between stations. Click here for complete rules.

Be sure to visit to enhance your 160M capabilities with 160M dipoleshigh pass and low pass receive filters, pre-ampsfeedline ferrite beads kitsACB-4 Hybrid 4-Square Systemsphased array quarter wave tuned cables160M add-on kits, and DX Engineering’s 55-foot 160M THUNDERBOLT Vertical Antenna.

WAB (Worked All Britain) 50 MHz Phone: June 18, 0800Z to 1400Z. Open to all licensed amateurs and shortwave listeners, the object of this contest is to work as many WAB squares and DXCC countries as possible on the following bands: 160M, 80M, 40M, 20M, 15M, 10M, 6M, 4M, 2M, and 70cm and above. Read complete rules here.

15th Annual 13 Colonies Special Event: July 1 to 7. This popular annual event honors the original 13 colony states, American independence, and active servicepeople and veterans. Get all the details here.

Also check out these State QSO Parties:

Kentucky: June 3, 1300Z to June 4, 0100Z

West Virginia: June 17, 1600Z to June 18, 0400Z

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