[MiQP-Mail] Spice up the pie..

David Pruett k8cc at comcast.net
Sat Mar 10 21:54:41 CST 2007


In my mind, there is one thing makes a QSO party stand out - and that's 
high levels of activity.  We need to pursue any idea which can be 
realistically expected to help in that regard.

I have a spreadsheet breaking down the activity levels of every MiQP for 
which we have a copy of the published results, and can show that while 
overall entry levels have risen 32% between the "old era" (19?? - 1998) 
and the "modern era" (1999 to present), this has come primarily due to 
increases in out-of-state activity.  When you compare the peak years of 
the old era to the most recent three years, out-of-state entries rose 
95% while Michigan entries actually dropped 3%.

Now I'll add the caveat that this is strictly in terms of the number of 
in-state entries received.  One major difference between the "old" and 
"modern" eras is the increased level (both in terms of quantity and 
quality) of the mobile activity which MiQP now enjoys.  Back in the day, 
there might be a handful of mobiles and each would activate five or six 
counties while nowadays, it's not untypical to have a dozen mobiles, 
with five or six activating 20 or more counties each.  This is a major 
standout for MiQP.

The point I'm trying to make is that while VHF FM operation, novelty 
rules like bonus stations and county line operations, and awards for 
"callsign bingo" may have proved attractive to some, I think that grass 
roots efforts to get Michigan stations (mobile or fixed) on the air for 
MiQP provides much greater benefits and costs little or nothing.  Along 
those lines I have to commend N8XX for his efforts to stimulate MiQP 
activity from Montcalm county amongst the hams that live there.  If 
every current MiQP entrant recruited one other ham to get on, it would 
double the in-state activity and boost overall activity roughly 50%.

Each year, our MiQP Communications Manager, NU8Z sends out e-mails to 
past MiQP participants and MiQP announcements to Michigan Clubs.  We 
also push for MRRC members in Michigan to get on the air.  Their only 
incentive to do so is for the good of the contest, since as contest 
sponsor, MRRC has decided to excludes itself from the club competition.  
This year, the MiQP Committee is trying to find ways to increase MiQP 
participation from the Michigan ARRL Operating Community, through our 
Great Lakes Division Director and our Michigan Section Manager.

But the best bang for the buck comes at the grass roots level.  Get the 
word out to your ham friends, go to your local radio club, give a MiQP 
presentation and talk it up amongst the members.  One area which could 
be capitalized on are the new codeless licensees.  As someone with a 22 
year-old nephew who is a new codeless licensee, I'm interested in ideas 
how we can get them involved?  While these licensees can operate in the 
general CW bands, 10M phone is likely to be their band/mode of greatest 
interest.  Maybe we all should decide to operate more 10M this year?  I 
know our K8MQP multi-multi puts a rig on 15/10 for the first six hours 
of the contest, and with condx being as we've seen recently, we only get 
a handful of QSOs.  We'll push for it again this year.  I think this 
would do more good than adding VHF/UHF operation.

As Hank suggested, we can do a "callsign bingo" award with existing 
callsigns.  I have already modified the log scoring software to 
automatically check whether an entry completed the "bingo word".  
However, we need to have someone agree to handle the awards; and that 
means getting them made, getting them paid for, and shipping them to the 
winners.  As a point of reference, last year 39 stations would have 
spelled the word "Mackinac" and 20 would have spelled the word 
"Michigan".  Granted, that's without any effort to get all of the 
letters on the air, but it gives an idea of the number of potential awards.

C'mon MiQPers, let's get out there and recruit!



hank k8dd wrote:
> On 3/10/07, *Randy Love* <wf5x at interserv.com 
> <mailto:wf5x at interserv.com>> wrote:
>     I think that extra incentives for non-"Hardcore" QP'ers is a great
>     idea.
> I think Randy said it all in that sentence. 
> The "Hardcore" QP'ers are, generally speaking, going to show up anyhow.
> You gotta "sell" MiQP to the non-"Hardcore" QP'ers.  Give them a 
> reason to get in there and look for stations calling "CQ MI QSO Party".
> Years ago when I made club stations worth something like 5 points per 
> QSO with them it seemed like the number of logs increased.
> Years ago there was something for the Techs - 6 meters and up which 
> caused pockets of activity from the VHF ops - they drove to 
> surrounding counties to give each other QSO's (and the Hardcore 
> QP'ers, too!).  One of them in Port Huron even used an airplane.   And 
> a few of them eventually upgraded and now enter QSO Parties on HF.
> Years ago in MiQP there were guys on county lines giving anywhere from 
> two to four counties and QSOs.  They sounded like they were having fun 
> and attracted attention for the QSO Party, and made a heck of a lot of 
> QSOs.
> Other than the unadvertised M/M battle between K8MQP and K8XXX, what 
> makes MiQP stand out?   (OK, and besides the NU8Z's "fire 'em up" SPAM 
> emails and a couple of road shows to some local clubs, that is).
> But will something like spelling a word that is not pronounced like 
> it's spelled (Macinac) make a difference for most of "Hardcore 
> type's"?  Probably not.    But might it attract some more of the 
> "casual type's"?   It just might!
> So there's my thoughts on the "spell Macinac or Michigan".  
> Hey - if you don't want to do it with 1X1 calls - use the first letter 
> of any suffix in MI to spell the word ..... you need two different 
> calls where there is a duplicate letter in the word.
> 73    Hank    K8DD
> (Fireproof suit on!)
> -- 
> 'Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their
> level then beat you with experience.'      -anon
> -- 
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