Yuma Hamfest Trip 2020

posted 2/22/20


Here is the Yuma Hamfest Flyer for 2020


On Monday 2/3/20 we had the good fortune to get up to 60 degrees in the afternoon here so I loaded my flea market stuff into the van.

Actually, there ended up being a couple of more large cardboard boxes than is shown in the photo.


Day One – Saturday, 2/8/20

It was 30 degrees with light snow flurries when I left home.

When I got to Cincinnati the snow picked up a bit and had a mix of drizzle included as well with 28 degrees.

By the time I got into Kentucky the drizzle was gone and I just had light flurries.

When I turned onto I-65 the precipitation stopped.  I was surprised to see how far south there was snow on the grass, but fortunately, I never saw much snow on the road.  It was all melted and quite messy at times!


The roads turned dry about 20 miles north of Bardstown, KY.  By the time I got to the Tennessee line it was 42 and sunny and it was up to 45 when I passed by Nashville.

It was 54 and sunny when I checked into my hotel in Germantown, TN.

Before too long, Max – K1MAX stopped over to visit.


I showed Max my new hat that Marian had given me for Christmas!

Ha ha!


   After we visited a bit we went out for a late lunch for Max because he had not eaten.  I just had an appetizer and Max had a light lunch as he plans to come back this evening and pick me up and we head out for dinner!  We had a most incredible visit there at the restaurant.  We were there a couple of hours!

After Max dropped me off I spent some time walking around the hotel area getting some exercise since I had sat in the van for much of the day.

Then Max picked me up again and Max, Lee and Lee’s sister Linda and I went to dinner together.   We had a dandy visit and managed to get all fed up!

L-R Linda, Lee and Max


Day Two – Sunday, 2/9/20

Well, I seemed to make a good transition to the new time zone by staying up a bit later than I usually do.  However, when I woke up there was still a good amount of time before I needed to head to Max’s to get on the IOOK skeds.  So, I decided to get a bit of exercise.  It only seemed appropriate for me to be wearing my Amateur Radio sweatshirt!    

Yes, this sweatshirt is quite old because I bought it back when this stamp first came out!  However, it is holding up well!  Think about a first class stamp being 5 cents!


I walked the halls and stairways here at the hotel for about an hour and a half and after I got cleaned up I headed over to Max’s to play radio.  

Well, Max and I did manage to check in with Charlie – NN3V out in California on 20 Meters but he was all we heard on that band.   


We actually had 8 check ins on 40 Meters and we could hear all but a couple of them pretty well!


  After the nets Max and I went to Slingshot Charlie’s!  What a GREAT lunch we had!  Delicious and delightful!

  By the time the doors opened there were about 30 people in line to get in!  We were really lucky that we were first in line!


After I dropped Max back off at home I came back to the hotel and played computer for a while and then did some more walking. 




Sadly the pool there is going through some renovation so no swimming this trip.  It was up to 66 and sunny!

As I was walking I noticed that the clouds were starting to come in and it was not nearly as bright as earlier.  Also, the wind was coming up!

When I got back to the hotel I noticed this flag across the from the back parking lot of my hotel.

God Bless America!


Here's a shot from the front of my hotel.


I followed Max, Lee and Linda to dinner because Max had made dinner reservations and they had tickets for a special show they were going to see after dinner.

Dinner was at Café 1912 and it was great! 


It amazed me to watch the three of them enjoying their exotic dinners!  I was truly still full from the delicious chicken livers I had for lunch so all I had was a salad!  But, we had a nice visit!  It started raining while we were eating.

After dinner they went to their show and I came back to the hotel and played some computer and made a couple of telephone calls.  Then I watched some television for the first time this trip.


Day Three – Monday, 2/10/20

My morning walk today was indoors again because of the rain outside.  The pool here is still shut down so no pool time again!  Once I got cleaned up it was soon time for Max to pick me up so we could head to lunch.  Tom – AC5MR joined us here at the hotel and the three of us rode together to the Pacific Fusion Buffet & Grill! 


We were met there by Jim – KI4I.  Wow!  What an incredible feast!  There was an incredible number of different items to select from.  As you can well imagine we all managed to get all fed up!  Our waitress took a shot of the four of us! 



What a fun get together! 

I spent the afternoon on computer chores and doing some early packing and such.  Max picked me up around 6PM and we went to dinner.  We decided on an Irish Pub we had been to a while back and Max had a soup and salad combo while I just had a salad.  Of course, since it was an Irish Pub we had to have a beer to wash the salad down!  Ha ha!  After all, some sacrifices must be made!

This has truly been one of my better trips to Germantown, Tennessee!  I have really enjoyed my time here!

Many thanks to Max for all the extra effort he has made to make my stay here enjoyable!  FANTASTIC!

Tomorrow I head towards Austin, Texas!


Day Four - Tuesday, 2/11/20

It was 41 degrees with light drizzle when I left the hotel this morning.  The rain started getting heavier in Arkansas as I was approaching Texas.  I basically drove in light to steady rain the remainder of the trip!  The high I saw during the trip was 48 and it was 44 when I checked into my motel in Austin, Texas.

As I was coming through Hillsboro, Texas I called Wil – WB5YFX on his repeater several times but got no response.  Then when I was in the Waco area I called Ron – AA5RT several times on his repeaters and also got no response.

Once I got checked into the hotel I played a bit of computer.  Then, since it was drizzling outside, I decided to walk a bit under the overhang of the motel.  Then I went out for dinner.  I ended up going back to the Taco Bell that I went to last year and it was just as good as last year!

I checked in with my buddy Don who lives in Austin and he and his wife are both on antibiotics to prevent them from getting infected.  So, our visit this trip was just on the phone because they are not seeing many folks!

I spent the rest of the evening watching TV.

Hmm, I just realized that I never took any pictures today!


Day Five – Wednesday, 2/12/20

I awoke a bit early and decided to go ahead and get on the road because I had many miles to cover that day.  It was a good thing I did because when I got outside it was 42 and raining quite hard.  So hard in fact that I did not feel comfortable driving the speed limit because I did not want to take a chance of hydroplaning!  There was a lot of water on the road. 

The rain finally quit about 20 miles before I got to I-10 but then there was heavy fog and the temperature was down to 37. 

Obviously I was battling heavy traffic as well!

Amongst the fog there was also occasional light drizzle. 


I noticed a sign that said how far it was to Van Horn.

The thing that got me is the guy who makes our IOOK badges is an IOOK Vice President and his name is Ron Van Horn - KA8PBB!  I know he is having some special health issues so I was thinking of him!


Once the fog lifted I still did not feel comfortable driving the speed limit because the road had enough inconsistency that at the speed limit it would have jarred my teeth out of my mouth. 

A while later I was thinking about how it was a shame I was having to deal with so much heavy traffic!


Around 11ish I filled up with gas and the sky was actually clearing and there was some sunshine and the temperature was up to 54. 

This is one of the familiar landmarks that always catches my eye.


Pretty clouds...


I thought some of these clouds were interesting looking.


I have reached Van Horn!  Yay for KA8PBB!


However, then I got into cross winds that kept me from driving the speed limit.  The cross winds did not diminish until I was approaching El Paso MANY miles later.  So, most of my day driving was spent below the posted speed limit.

I am entering New Mexico!



Once I got into New Mexico I saw Chas – AI0OK driving slowly waiting for me to catch up.  We went to La Mesilla like usual.  We could not chat on the radio because something was strange with his radio.

Here's Chas!


Then Chas grabbed a shot of me!


Interesting history...


In the gift shop we saw this sign.

Needless to say, it spoke to me!


Check out this historical marker...



After dinner we headed to Deming, NM for the night.  I was really surprised to see SNOW in places in the desert along the way! 

The high I saw as I crossed Texas on I-10 was 51.


Day Six – Thursday, 2/13/20

When Chas and I got up it was 30 degrees and we had heavy frost on our cars.  On our way to Tucson we saw frozen water in the desert. 


We also saw snow on the tops of the mountains. 

That is something that we do not normally see here!


I am truly amazed by the number of things I have seen this trip that I have never seen before.

As usual we stopped at Texas Canyon and I got what I consider is a GREAT shot of the moon over the mountains!


Here's Chas at Texas Canyon!


We met Jim – AE8R and Sue – AI8Q at a new restaurant there in Tucson.  


As you can see Chas and I were not having any fun either!


We had a fun visit and great brunch! 

This shot was taken in front of the restaurant!

Neat looking cactus...


After brunch it was already up to 54 and it was sunny!

Here are some cactus from along our way...



  It was up to 59 when we got to I-8.  It was 71 when we checked into the motel in Yuma! 

Then Chas and I checked into the flea market!  Here are BJ - KD7WBH and another gal who is helping her!


Chas and I got the banner installed.

Flat KBob did NOT help!


Then we ran into David - W6EVO!

His camper is parked right beside our booth (behind him in this photo)!


Then I got a look at the back of David's motor home.  What a combination of things!


Chas and I met up with Jim and Sue for dinner and Kristen - K6WX also joined us!





  After dinner Kristen came back here and visited with Chas and I! 

Chas gave her the IOOK mug that she did not get last year!


 Then Pink - K7ILA arrived!

Then Chas gave Pink her IOOK mug she had not gotten last year!


Here are a couple of shots that Pink - K7ILA shared with me!



What a fantastic evening!


Day  Seven – Friday, 2/14/20

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Marian hid this in my stuff.  She  must have known I would look there on Valentine's day!

Very nice and thoughtful!  I love you too!


Here's a look at the Yuma Hamfest banner as I drove into the hamfest early that morning!


  Chas and I were up early and setting up in the flea market before the sun came up!  It was 51 degrees.  I made my first sale around 7:30! 

Here's Chas chatting with a couple of guys early on...


Here is a look at our flea market space from a couple of different angles.



Here's one of the Yuma Hamfest guys who checks up on things...


Jack - KC7DUU stopped by for a short visit!


Before we knew it Tom - W3TOM showed up!


The next thing we knew Jim and Sue arrived at our booth!


Lunch was from In & Out!  Chas went out and picked up our lunches!

Yes, burger and fries animal style!


Kristen gave her first seminar and it was well attended!



The next thing I knew Debbie - KA3VNF,  Tom - W3TOM's XYL arrived!


Here's a shot of Tom and Debbie together!


If you look carefully here you can see some of the Vice Presidential air cover during out visit to Yuma!





When I went inside for a while I managed to have a visit with a couple of IOOK'ers!  Here are Hall - KC7RAF and Anne - KC7RAG!


This was on the side of a camper near our flea market space!

God Bless America!


Chas took a little nap in the afternoon.


Gordon West – WB6NOA stopped by for a visit!


You can see we had a bit of a breeze by the way the flag is fanning out.


Kristen stopped by for a visit...


Then Bruce - W6RBM arrived!


Pink stopped by for a visit as well!






It was truly an incredible day.  We saw a high of around 74 degrees.  I managed to sell 14 major items during the day plus a bunch of little stuff!  Fantastic!


We had a great dinner and visit at the Village Inn Pizza near our hotel!  Delightful!






BJ - KD7WBH & Jack - KC7DUU


We had a dandy visit and managed to get all fed up!


Day Eight – Saturday, 2/15/20

Chas and I got the flea market booth set up early again!  It was 51 degrees again!  

Bruce, David and Chas enjoying some morning time at David's camper beside our flea market booth!


Here's an early look at our booth all set up!


Pink - K7ILA's trailer hook up!


Pink's set up!


Pink's friends!


Glen - AI6RR and Charlie - NN3V have arrived!


Hall stopped by for a visit!


Some visiting going on...


Chas placed an order for these badges with Jack - KC7DUU and his new engraving business at dinner Friday night.  He picked them up Saturday morning and passed a few of them out!  Many thanks Chas!

A nice way to say what these stand for is CRS means "Can't Remember Stuff" and, according to Richard - VK5UK, in Australia CRAFT means "Can't Remember A eFFing Thing".


Mark - KF6WTN


Riley - K4ZDH presented a seminar.


Riley stopped by for a visit!


Shortly after Riley's seminar finished up Kristen started her next seminar!



After Kristen’s seminar we got together for our group picture!  Awesome! 


About an hour or so later Anne and Hall arrived.  They had a conflict with our photo time.


Cleaning up...



This is what Jack was doing when we sat down for dinner Saturday night!


We did not sell as much during the day as we had on Friday but it was still a great day!  In the afternoon it got up to 78!  Chas went back to In & Out for lunch again!

When I packed up I discovered that we had managed to sell enough stuff that I had 3 large cardboard boxes that I had brought that were empty and 1 and ½ tubs out of the 4 I had brought were empty as well.  So, it was a very productive sales weekend!  Plus we got to see a lot of the IOOK folks who had attended!


All cleaned up and ready for dinner!


It was truly a great Hamfest!

The Old Buzzard’s BBQ was wonderful as well and, as usual, it was well attended!  


We are waiting for our table to be called...

Naturally, we were the last table to be called but there was still plenty of food!


As usual the food was great as well!  

Kristen – K6WX gave a very moving set of statements about Ti – NJ6T’s history and her passing.  God Bless them both!  

Sadly none of the IOOK won any prizes but we had a great time and a wonderful visit! 

After dinner Charlie, Glen, Chas and I came back to my room and enjoyed some special visit time and we sipped a bit of Jim Beam and Scoresby Scotch!  Cheers! 



Day Nine – Sunday, 2/16/20

It was 51 when I headed out to meet the guys at Cracker Barrel for breakfast.





Tom - W3TOM was a bit late arriving but he still got there before we ordered our breakfasts!


  After breakfast all of them headed out of town and I came back to the hotel to work on pictures and such from the FANTASTIC weekend!

Here is where I spent a large part of my day!


  Around 11:15ish I decided to take a walk around the hotel for some exercise!  It was already up to 71 degrees!  However, the water in the pool was COLD!  So I chose to pass on the pool!  There were some folks sunning themselves around the pool but NO ONE was in the water.

I worked some more on pictures and such and then took another walk while the lady cleaned up my room.  The biggest difficulty for me was not going across the street to the cigar store that also has a place where you can also drink beer!  Score one for me!  I DID NOT GO!


A while later I met up with Jack – KC7DUU and BJ - KD7WBH for dinner at Tacos Mi Rancho.


It was up to 78 degrees again!   As usual, we had a delightful meal and wonderful visit!

After dinner Jack showed me an interesting bracket that he plans to revamp and install on their new motor home for his HF antenna.  This lets the antenna be stored horizontally when it is not in use and then it is vertical when it is in use!


Many thanks to Jack and BJ!

Many thanks as well to the IOOK’ers who were able to be here!  It was great seeing you!  I had a fun and fantastic weekend!


Day Ten – Monday, 2/17/20

Happy Presidents Day!

I got up and got on the road around 5AM.  I knew that I had a long day’s drive plus I would lose an hour because of crossing into a different time zone.  It was 55 when I headed out but once I got into the open desert the temperature went down to 45.

The early shots I took did not work out.  I was pleased that my GPS selected the south route over the north route for me to get to Amarillo, Texas.  

During my drive east I saw some pretty unusual cactus.


The edges of Texas Canyon while going east...


The temperature was up to 59 when I crossed into New Mexico.


Interesting scenery as I head east...


Some more interesting cactus...


When I left I-10 at Deming and headed northeast it was up to 65.

Yeah, I am battling a lot of traffic here!


This is in a small town where the road makes a turn.  I think it is too funny!


I stopped for gas in Socorro, NM and the temperature was up to 70!  Delightful!

When I turned onto I-40 in Albuquerque I was surprised to see patchy places with some snow along the road.  However, I was quite a few miles east of there before I had a good opportunity to get a couple of pictures of it!  The funny thing was it was 60 degrees!



More interesting scenery as I travel northeast...



It was down to 51 when I crossed into Texas and lost my hour!  I got a shot of the sign telling you that you are leaving New Mexico and another crappy picture of the sign showing you are entering Texas!



A short while later I noticed LOTS of windmills along the road.  The WILD thing is that they continue for around 50 miles!  Incredible!



I pulled into my motel in Amarillo around 7PM and it was 55.  I spent the rest of the evening playing computer.


Day Eleven – Tuesday, 2/18/20

When I got on the road around 6AM it was 37 degrees.  The lucky thing for me driving east was that there was a layer of clouds along the horizon so I did not have the sun coming at me like it could have!  I started getting some crosswinds around the mile marker 34 in Oklahoma but they were not nearly as strong as those I dealt with in southern Texas.  Yes, I was able to drive the speed limit plus a few!  I called the local guys on the repeaters as I passed through the Oklahoma City area but did not have any responses.  It was 41 when I passed through the Oke City area.  I finally noticed that the crosswinds had died down around mile marker 150!

It was up to 44 when I stopped for gas in Tulsa.  Just east of Tulsa I started getting some light sprinkles.  Those light sprinkles finally stopped when I was about 30 miles west of Missouri!  Once I headed north on I-49 in Missouri the sun came out!  Delightful!  However, even with the nice sunshine the temperature was only up to 47 when I got to Nevada, MO.

Now, here’s something I have not shared with you prior to this.  My stay in Missouri was going to be different than originally planned.  I found out the night before I left to start this trip that my cousin Bob was in the hospital with a cancerous tumor in his throat.  I called his daughter after I checked into the motel in Nevada and they had just arrived at the hospital in Kansas City (100 miles north) to get the doctor’s diagnosis.  She told me to call her back between 4 and 5PM. 

Well, I finally got hold of Lara, my cousin Bob's daughter.  She told me to call between 4 and 5 but it was going on 6 before I got hold of her!  Obviously the doctor's visit took longer than expected.  Instead of surgery right away, they plan to do radiation and chemo first.  Then they will do surgery.  Tomorrow they are supposed to install a feeding tube in his belly and a port for the chemo.  I am supposed to call tomorrow and see when/if I can visit with him!

Dinner this evening was at Buzz’s BBQ.  I took a shot outside and then one of the name on a door inside.



I must say that the Indian reminded me a lot of a typical cigar store Indian except he held no cigars!


Finally I took a shot of an antique telephone that brought back a lot of memories for me about being here.


When I was a kid we visited my Aunt, Uncle and cousins.  The telephone the family had back then in the mid to late 50’s was just like the one in the photo!  Incredible!

Even though I had no one to share my dinner time with it really tasted good and I managed to get all fed up!

I had some extra time to spend so I did some laps in the small indoor pool they have at the motel.  OK!  I am lying.  When I got to the pool I found out it was closed for the season and then I ended up changing clothes and walking inside the motel.  What a shame!  I was really looking forward to some pool time!

The rest of the evening was spent watching some TV which is something I have not done a lot of this trip.


Day Twelve – Wednesday, 2/19/20

This morning it was 26 degrees with frost on the windshields.  I decided to walk some both inside and outside.  The reason for going outside was because the sun was getting ready to come up and I wanted to catch a couple of shots of the sunrise.  I think the shots turned out pretty neat.




The rest of my walking was inside.

Once I got cleaned up I played computer for a while.  Then I had some time to burn so I went out for a little ride.  I stopped by Bob and Sue’s place and just took a few shots.




Then I stopped Lincoln’s place and took a few shots.




This is where Lincoln's house used to be.  I was kind of surprised that the house was gone!

I did not know where he was living these days.





When I got back to the motel I had an e-mail from Marian telling me that Bob had called the house and wanted me to call him!  Bob had called my cell phone and got no answer because it was turned off.  WHAT A SURPRISE!

I called Bob and got no answer.  Then I called Lara and she called him as well and got no answer.  She said she would try him again a little later.  A while later I called Bob and got him!  He said he had forgotten that he had turned off the ringer on the phone while he was at the doctor yesterday.  He planned to come to town and we could go to lunch!

This was all a great surprise to me because I thought they were going to install the feeding tube and chemo port that day.  Well, it turns out he has not heard back from them about when all that will occur so he was going to be out and about!

The funny thing is Bob had gone to the bank in town and made the original call while he was out and about.  Now, what is even funnier is that at the same time I was out taking a ride to Bob and Sue's because I did not expect to be able to go there this trip is when he called Marian!  I just took a couple of shots of their house.  I figured that no one was at home because they were all in Kansas City for him to get the port and feeding tube.

He came to the motel and picked me up and we went to lunch.

We had a delightful lunch and a fantastic visit!

After lunch we drove around a bit.

This is the office for the fertilizer company that Bob and Lincoln run.  It turns out that this is where Lincoln is living now!



 Then we ended up back at the motel and Bob came in to continue our visit!


OK!  Here is the story.  Bob's wife and daughter have been trying to protect him by reducing the number of folks who have contact with him.  The information I got yesterday about him getting the radiation and chemo prior to the surgery is correct.  However, the hospital is going to call him sometime (maybe today) to set up an appointment to get the port and feeding tube installed.  Also, according to Bob, the tumor is not a throat tumor.  It is an esophageal mass in the 3rd section of the esophagus.  Once the chemo is done they will do the surgery to remove the bad area and move the stomach up to that area.

According to Bob, Sue and Lara have been going over board to protect him.  Obviously they are very concerned for his safety.  However, to look at him, to eat with him, watch him drink and to talk with him you would never know there was anything wrong!  In many ways it is truly a blessing that he had a problem with spitting up some blood and the fact that his nurse wife Sue decided to take him to be examined just in case there was a more severe problem.  Otherwise, he would never have known that he has cancer.

He picked me up a little before 11AM and it was going on 4PM when he headed back home.  We had an INCREDIBLE visit!

Bob will be in my prayers as he progresses along.  There is no question in my mind that some of my prayers were answered and I am truly blessed!

At this point in time I plan to head towards home tomorrow which is a day earlier than in my original plan.  I will check with Bob - N0BIX to see if he will be available to meet me for lunch as I come through his area in western Illinois!

Then I spent time catching up on some computer chores.  Then I did some “pre packing”.

Dinner this evening was at a Subway that was close by.  I just wanted a light dinner!

The rest of the evening was spent packing up some stuff, answering some e-mail and watching some TV.

This was truly an INCREDIBLE day that I had not expected!


Day Thirteen – Thursday, 2/20/20

OK!  I heard back from Bob – N0BIX and he and Jean plan to meet me for lunch.  I checked out of the hotel and set out to meet him at a little before 7AM.  It was 25 degrees and I had light snow on my van.  The roads were just wet but there was a trace of snow in the grass.


By the time I got about 50 miles east of Nevada the snow was gone.

Here I am going around the east side of St. Louis.



The temperature was up to 32 when I met up with Bob and Jean for lunch!

Bob caught a shot of me as I was pulling in.








We had a GREAT visit!  I really appreciate Bob and Jean coming out and meeting up with me!

As I was approaching Indianapolis during rush hour I saw one of those signs above the road saying that  I-70 was closed ahead because of an accident and I should use I-465 south to go around the accident and get back on I-70.  As I was going around on I-465 I heard on the radio that a truck had crashed and then exploded and that was why the Interstate was closed.  When I got back on I-70 there was absolutely NO traffic coming from that direction.  Incredible!

Here I am getting ready to cross over into Ohio!


I managed to arrive at home around 6:45 PM.

It was good to be back home!


After unloading my suitcases and such we had a “late for us” dinner and then I set to unpacking.


I took this shot when I got the van parked in the garage.  Yes, I drove a total of 4,708.7 miles!


I will unload the flea market stuff out of the van at a later time.  The rest of the evening was spent watching some television with Marian!  It was good to be back home!

I must say that I was very pleased with the great sales I made at the hamfest.  I was also pleased that so many IOOK’ers attended the hamfest.  I truly appreciate all my friends and family that I got to visit with during my trip!  Yep, that is a lot of miles in a short period of time but that part doesn’t really bother me!

I think my biggest disappointment this trip was the closed indoor pools!  I never used my swimsuit!

I am so glad I got to have a GREAT visit with my cousin Bob!  I was so afraid that wasn't going to happen!

OK!  That pretty well wraps up this trip to Yuma and back!

Many thanks to all who contributed photos for the web page!

Best wishes to all!

73, Keith