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Greater Houston Hamfest

Greater Houston HamFest

2024 Our 21st year
Friday March  01 and Saturday March 02 2024
Show Fri 12PM-6PM and Sat 8AM - 3PM

Previous Year event photos:
2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Growing Bigger Every Year!
more then 1600 attendees !!

2024 will be an even bigger event!!!

HamFest Contacts

Call me

Mike – 713-826-6917  n5vcx@att.net

2023 Volunteers

Ticket Booth

Dave Ely
Jeff Greer
Scott Medbury
Daphne Rawlinson

Raffle Sales / BVARC Table
Mike Knerr
Sally Knerr
Anita Easter
Kacie Koralturk
Brittany Gurrola – photographer

 Mike Hardwick
Eddie Runner
Chuck Kf5UXP
Dave Stevens – Paramedic
Scott McKee NT5SM
John Brochus KC9JLE
Richard Bonica 

Michael Mancias – prizes, forums director, announcer


Ginni’s Brother

Robert Polinski

Drew Dasher


Anthony Morones
Mike Shanks N5NPM
Terry Leatherland – announcer and presenter
John Chauvin

Bubba AI5KD

Dave Parmalie

Gokham Koralturk

Jose Cantor N0NIL

Ron Litt

Theresa Williams

Kelly Medbury

John K5VGM

Mike K5MWJ

Stephen Flowers W2WF


Pat Cox event parking

Gloria V

Eliene Rohman

Paul Easter

Riley Hollingsworth – Presenter

Joe Eisenberg – Presenter

Anthony Hollister – Fox Hunt Coordinator

Sheffany Roberts

Bill Cordell


Suzanne Runner

Walter Holmes – presenter


HF Station

JP Pritchard

Kori Rohman

Uganda Simpson



Equipment Testing

Pump Handle Fawcett

Dan Villalanti

Paul McGuffey

Christopher Boone – Presenter

Bob Stroupe

Jesse Gurrola

Karl Bernard

John Whiteman

Ken Binnie

Ron Fawcett

Bubba Flowers

David Bennett


VE Testing

Mark Janzer

Richard Goldy



Emergency Vehicles

Dave Scott

John Denison KD5YOU

Luke Bugler K0LTB

Ronald Fawcett KD5CDM

Dennis Harper KC5QDN

Scott McKee NT5SM

Richard Bonica KG5YCU

Kori Rahman WX5KR

Sheree Horton WM5N

Berrisford Bramble KF5HSH


Without Volunteers we will have no hamfest
We Need You!  Get Involved Now!

Where do you fit in?

We need folks at the hamfest for many many tasks, you can help for a couple hours or you can dig in and help us plan and run this thing by being a task leader or task member…   There is a lot of stuff listed on this page, if you fell like you have any expertise in any of these particular areas and want to help please give us a phone call directly  …

Contact Mike Hardwick, N5VCX 

Greater Houston HamFest Forward Planning

Organization Ver. 03/25/2023

Friday 12pm till 6pm
Saturday 8Am till 3pm


Setup Hours
Thursday 9am till 4pm
Friday 9am till 6pm
Saturday 8Am till 2pm

Prize Committee
purpose to solicit door prizes and decide on the best deals for raffle prizes

Door prize solicitation will be through mass marketing using the email addresses in the Vendor Database and the hamfestvendors send only reflector.. houstonhamfest.info
and also direct phone contacts with vendors. Please save your contacts, names, emails for next year as well.
Advertise with description, value and photos the raffle prizes and the generous companies who donated them.

Help choose raffle and try to work a deal.


Social Media

This was very valuable at the last show.. Lets make these guys stars…


Raffle tickets will be sold inside building C only…
Raffle Committee:
Raffle will be re-evaluated,  We sold a record number of raffle tickets  But there were a few mistakes..

Entice folks to buy raffle tickets by beefing up the announcer, display prizes, advertise on web and direct marketing
We can promote the raffle on our Internet website or through a publication or solicitation, including a newsletter, social media, or electronic mail, provided only to previously identified supporters of the organization

The following information must be printed on each raffle ticket sold or offered for sale:

(1)  the name of the organization conducting the raffle;

(2)  the address of the organization or of a named officer of the organization;

(3)  the ticket price;

(4)  a general description of each prize having a value of more than $10 to be awarded in the         raffle;  and

(5)  the date on which the raffle prize or prizes will be awarded.


We broke an attendance record,  but we failed to get the single day counts.. Important to get all the counts.

There is a label maker button for attendance only Admis Packets Booth on the admin website.  This list will be comma delimited and can be imported into any label maker software (lets test this before the show) Each entry will have Name, Email, address, city, state, zip, time/date of purchase, how many admissions and amount paid… Put in the envelope the appropriate number of  door prize tickets and wrist bands stick on the label…  Using the label maker import will eliminate spelling errors by typing names in manually

In an organized envelope box system It is possible someone paid with another name or some other confusing thing, this will be fairly rare, but you will have ALL the tickets in these envelopes,… FIND THEM .. do not be lazy and just give the guy free tickets, FIND THEM IN THE ENVELOPES…   If you cant find them please call the Co-Chair if you think tickets are missing..

ALL ORDERS WILL BE HERE, If we cannot find them then we are a FAIL….

1) Before the show – These pre-paid admission tickets must be available before the show, Vendors will be setting up on Thursday and Friday morning and they need their wristbands and red tickets.. 2023 Vendors just came in and were shown to their tables with no wrist bands nor red tickets, and some of them never even got them.

Also, Volunteers (who also pre-paid) will need tickets before the show (2023 some NEVER got the tickets)

2) online web count – electronic :  Total Count will be online:  This is not broken down by day but ticket booth can count them… (count total envelopes (actually tickets) at start of show, and count again at start of Saturday) keep these numbers

Counting.. You should have a total count on the envelopes in this box before the start of the show… On Saturday morning please make another  count of the remaining envelopes… this way we can see who picked up on Friday, who picked up on Saturday and who did not come to the show.. All important information!
Ticket booth will only be responsible for tickets, if someone bought tables AND admission tickets, you will have the tickets, and send them inside to find the tables….

2) Friday Count – Ticket booth
Ticket booth will be selling tickets from ONE roll of red tickets ..  please record the starting number from the red roll..
3) Saturday Count – Ticket Booth
Ticket booth will be selling Saturday tickets from THE SAME roll of red tickets ..  please record the Saturday starting number from the red roll, but do not loose the Friday starting ticket,..

Then with these two numbers and the end number we have both days individually and together… simple as can be.

Attendance is an important number, we use the attendance number to attract vendors to the next years show, the higher our attendance the more attractive our show is to folks coming down to SELL…

Wrist Bands

Wrist bands are how folks will be admitted in to building C

Red- Normal folks only admission during open hours
Green – Vendors they can enter the building for setup early

Purple – Volunteers , they can enter and exit at will

Wrist bands will be checked at DRIVE through gate, ticket booth

gate and at the main entrances to building c

Before Show Hours

Vendors or volunteers or VIPS driving or walking up to the drive through gate before show hours

Will need to get entrance bands so the pre-sold envelopes (or pay now with cash) needs to happen

at the drive up gate..  Table assignments has to happen in building C  – running back and fourth

to the gate will not work, we may be able to co-ordinate this with radios… (potential problem_



Setup / Teardown
For Setup and Teardown we hire a crew to unfold the tables and chairs, and fold them up again after the who is over.

But still we need folks to move the tables to where they go,  move the stage modules, hang banners and signs, and to prepare PRE-SHOW

And the opposite POST-SHOW – take down te signs, and blah blah blah


Audio / Video
Robert Polinski, and this year he needs a couple of guys at least 
We also talked about having several large monitors so folks can watch for their ticket numbers to come up
Something was mentioned about using building C speakers, instead of the PA speakers we usually provide..

Table Sales
Most of this will be done online of course, but has also been done on the day of the show by the tables guy..
Tables will be most entirely sold online before the show, very few if any will be available at the show…

Table packet pickup will be inside building C
Table sales  packets can be downloaded to stuff the envelopes (or index cards or better yet something with tax info on it)

using button on BVARC ADMIN section table packets


Table Layout

Something for Vendors? Coffee donuts, lunch?

sign up sheet, certain volunteers may get FREE entry and FREE LUNCH.
This has never happened but probably should be discussed

HF Station

Speaker / Raffle Stage

After the show DO NOT THROW AWAY the leftover raffle tickets.. We had trouble with the ticket counts in 2020 and 2023… the leftover tickets can be a backup count if all else fails..

Forums and Speakers
1)  Line up speakers and presentations for the sow
2)  schedule and present the presentations as they occure

Customer Acquisition
Our email marketing campaign was amazing, we need to expand the ways we can capture folks email addresses so they can be included in our email campaigns in the future…  Free Drawing, winner will be notified by email, please put your email on the ticket and drop it in the bucket..

We could actually even do this online – we have about 2500 in our email list currently but we
should always try to expand it.


Ticket Booth
Ticket booth crew will operate in and around the ticket booth, responsible for the credit card machine and selling entry tickets with wristbands (1 red ticket pair, one red wrist band per admission)… ticket booth crew will also be responsible for rotating a gate guard at the entry gate at the ticket booth, making sure everyone entering will have a wristband…

Ticket booth crew will label and stuff the envelopes with prepaid admissions before the HamFest….

BVARC ADMIN use admission packets button.

Ticket booth:

1) sell tickets by cash or credit card
2) Handout pre-paid tickets
3) guard ticket gate
(gate open only during show hours, BVARC will have a chain and lock of our own to control this gate)
4) rotate your people so they do not get bored

5) Nothing else but tickets sold at ticket booth..

Friday Auction

We have talked about adding an auction to our show every year but we just haven’t done it.
HVRA does an auction a couple times a year (like Texas City) but they do not seem friendly and not sure

They would be much of a  draw.. This organization requires you be a PAID member of their club before you can bid.. This is ridiculous…

Back in the 80s/90s the Intercontinental Airport Hamfest, had what they called the JUNKBOX auction..

Back then my 10 year old son got a kick out of bidding fife cents on all the misc boxes of junk.. The auction was always fun and well attended..   Funny much of this junk found its way to flea market tables the next morning at a higher price…


Friday Dinner
to take the stress out of the first day of the hamfest, to let folks get to know each other .
Friday Dinner can be pre-sold online dinner tickets (like our banquet),  or can be at a pay per person restaurant


Door Prizes:


Amateur Testing
Last show we tested 27 people, can we do more with more teams?  Is there a record we can break?

As for VE testing, we’re not trying to break any records. We are hoping to have a reasonable passing rate (better than 80%). The passing rate for the hamfest testing was pretty abysmal, with 18 of 28 passing (64%). It would seem some were encouraged to take the tests, unprepared, and the results were a disappointment (for us and them).


As for our capacity, we had no issues with the number of workstations (except for the beginning of Friday’s session). We adjusted a few things and especially for Saturday, we always had open workstations. We do have a 20 workstation capacity, though we had 10 stations set up on Saturday with no issues (10 is about the limit for chairs and desk space in the George Pavilion office). 


All the upgrades got their “ticket” late Tuesday, with the new licenses assigned Tuesday and Wednesday, depending on when they paid the $35 to the FCC.


We did have yellow wristbands for “Testing Only” entry (no entry to the rest of the buildings). Please make the door guards aware of this caveat.






Note that under ARRL/VEC policy, exam candidates cannot be charged a hamfest admission fee if he/she is coming just for the exam. Candidates will be liable for their own parking fees, tolls and any other charges involved with getting to and from the test site. If a candidate decides to visit the event before or after the exam, however, they can be charged the same entrance fee as any other attendee, of course. p27


Update Electronic Ticketing and Possibly Table Sales
It was pointed out that Belton uses an electronic onlline service

Looking into it they use a company called event brite

If Confused

Call me

Mike – 713-826-6917

We Need Volunteers

We Need Volunteers

We Need Volunteers

We Need Volunteers