Events / HAM Radio 101

Guide to November Contests

November is the season to give thanks for some of the year’s best Ham Radio contesting opportunities. Here are a few highlights:

  • ARRL November Sweepstakes, CW (November 2-4) 2100 UTC Saturday to 0259 UTC Monday. For stations in the United States and Canada to exchange QSO information with as many other U.S. and Canadian stations as possible on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10 meter bands.
  • Antique Wireless Association (AWA) Bruce Kelley 1929 QSO Party (November 9-10, 16-17) 2300Z Saturday to 2300Z Sunday. Started in 1991, this is an annual CW event in which operators use an original transmitter they own or one they have built based on “the designs, techniques, and tubes that were available in 1929 and earlier,” according to the AWA website. The goal is to contact as many other 1929 stations as possible. You do not need to be an AWA member to participate. Bruce Kelley, W2ICE, who championed the contest in its seminal years, was an AWA co-founder.

“Since early designed gear is used, it is a wonderful blend of whooping, chirping, buzzing, clicking, drifting, swishing, swaying, warbling, and other interesting signals,” the AWA website reads. “This is what ham radio sounded like in 1929, and it’s 1929 again on the ham bands!”

  • CQ Worldwide DX Contest, CW (November 23-24) 0000 UTC Saturday to 2359 UTC Sunday. The CW and SSB (held in October) CQ WW is the largest Amateur Radio competition in the world, boasting 35,000 participants working to make as many contacts with as many different DXCC entities and CQ Zones as possible.
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