The Waypoint Amateur Radio Club, WA0RC, made up of Garmin employees at headquarters in Olathe, Kansas, held a 2m Simplex Contest on April 13th. As Vice President of the club for 2024, I decided to take the lead on this event after seeing some examples online and thought this could be a great way to get some of our newer and less experienced hams on the air in a fun way without a lot of difficulty. The goal was a relatively casual contest that took place over a two-hour period on Saturday night. The flyer below outlines all the rules for the event, which again was meant to be low-overhead and easy to participate in. I decided to run the club station as a bonus station to make things a bit more interesting and to easily monitor the contest while it went on.

To drum up activity, I sent the details to Larry’s List, inviting all those in the Kansas City metro to participate, and I donated a $25 gift certificate to Associated Radio in Overland Park for the winner. This helped bring awareness to the club’s existence in the area as we are just getting active again after COVID had put a damper on things.

In the end, we had eight hams submit their logs, including a few from the local community not affiliated with WA0RC (which was awesome!). Although I didn’t require complete logs to be submitted, it appears we had at least 14 unique participants from the area as well although one log I saw indicated there were probably a few more that I didn’t hear at the club station. The winner was Kyle, K0KN, who isn’t associated with the club but was a very active participant over the full two hours. In second place was Chris, KF0PBX, who is a new ham and seemed to have a lot of fun during the contest. He got creative and used Garmin’s eight-story tower to his advantage by bringing his handheld radio and standing by the window looking out in various directions.

Overall, this proved to be a fun way to spend a couple of hours. The short duration, simple rules, and opportunity to “rove” during the event made it interesting even with just a 10W power limit. We intend to run this contest again, perhaps with some modifications to the rules (like making it only an hour instead of two and expanding to 70cm in addition to 2m) and with more widespread advertising to local clubs in the month or two preceding the event. If your club is looking for a fun event to put on that doesn’t require a lot of planning or management, consider doing something similar!

Full Results:

Call sign # Contacts Zip 1 Zip 2 Worked WA0RC? Total Score
K0KN 14 66061 none yes 24
KF0PBX 13 66062 66061 yes 23
KD0RTY 7 66030 66031 yes 17
KB0MVQ 5 66062 none yes 15
N0JTG 5 66061 none yes 15
KD0WGZ 4 66061 none yes 14
WA0RC (op: KD8RTT) 14 66062 none N/A 14
KD0JWD 3 66062 none yes 13