Tag Archives: SWLFest

Save the Dates: 2016 Winter SWL Fest

Mark Fahey hosts his forum, "Monitoring Dusty War Zones and Tropical Paradises: On Being a Broadcast Anthropologist"

Mark Fahey hosts his forum, “Monitoring Dusty War Zones and Tropical Paradises: On Being a Broadcast Anthropologist” at the 2015 Winter SWL Fest.

Richard Cuff and John Figliozzi have just announced the dates for the 2016 Winter SWL Fest–it will be held on February 19th and 20th, 2016. I encourage you to save these dates and plan to attend!

What’s the SWL Fest about? Check out my summary of the 2015 Winter SWL Fest.

(Source: SWLFest email discussion group)

Dates: Friday & Saturday February 19th & 20th, 2016

Location: Doubletree Guest Suites Philadelphia West, Plymouth Meeting, PA

[…]We expect to hold registration fees as they were in 2015.

Will get website & forms updated over the next couple of weeks…

-Richard & John, co-Festmeisters

Off air recording of the Shortwave Shindig?

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Are there any SWLing Post readers out there who could make an off air recording of the Shortwave Shindig broadcast tonight (22:00 EST, 02:00 UTC)? If so, please comment!  I would like to share your recordings on the Shortwave Radio Audio Archive.

Please note the type of radio used and what part of the world you live in. The more recordings, the merrier! Thank you!

The Shortwave Shindig goes live on shortwave Friday 3/14/14 from the 27th Annual Winter SWL Festival in Plymouth Meeting, PA. The Shindig signs on for one hour at 10 ET/0200 UTC on 7,570 khz via WRMI’s new Okeechobee facility. Please join us for a celebration of the art and culture of long distance listening.

Listen to the Shortwave Shindig live: Friday on WRMI 7,570 kHz

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If you can’t make it to the Winter SWL Fest this year, you can still listen to one hour of David Goren’s Shortwave Shindig via a live broadcast through WRMI. Here are the details:

The Shortwave Shindig goes live on shortwave Friday 3/14/14 from the 27th Annual Winter SWL Festival in Plymouth Meeting, PA. The Shindig signs on for one hour at 10 ET/0200 UTC on 7,570 khz via WRMI’s new Okeechobee facility. Please join us for a celebration of the art and culture of long distance listening.

Be sure to check out David Goren’s website: Shortwaveology.net

NASWA Details its 27th Annual Winter SWL Fest Program

David Goren hosts the annual Shortwave Shindig

David Goren of shortwaveology.net hosts the annual Shortwave Shindig–just one of the unique programs you’ll find at the Winter SWL Festival

For those of you readers who often feel you’re alone in your enthusiasm for radio, I highly encourage you to attend the NASWA-sponsored Winter SWL Festival in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania this year. This will be my sixth year attending, and I have eagerly awaited the arrival of the ‘Fest.  It is jam-packed with radio-related information and forums (indeed, yours truly will present again this year) and attended by many radio kindred spirits.

If you register early, By February 1, you’ll not only save a little money, but you’ll be entered to win a portable shortwave radio in a special raffle.  Exclusive hotel rates are also available to fest attendees.

Want to know what the SWLfest is like?  read the outline of the 2014 Winter SWL Festival below and check out this overview from last year:

(Source: NASWA press release)

NASWA, the North American Shortwave Association, has announced preliminary program details for its 27th Annual Winter SWL Festival to be held at the Doubletree Suites Hotel in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania on March 14 and 15, 2014.

The Winter SWL Fest is the largest and longest-running annual meeting of shortwave radio enthusiasts and hobbyists in the Western Hemisphere. Beyond the opportunity to renew old friendships and make new contacts, the conference serves as a forum for discussion of radio-related matters of interest and import to the attendees, which have numbered in excess of 200 in some recent years.

This year’s program of forums features two presentations by Australian Mark Fahey, who has travelled North Korea extensively in recent years. Over four successive trips to each province of the country, he has smuggled in and out monitoring and recording equipment enabling the capture and analysis of hundreds of hours of domestic radio and television broadcasting.

Scheduled for successive afternoons on Friday and Saturday, Behind the Curtain: North Korean Broadcasting and Propaganda, will extensively discuss and feature audio and video examples of North Korean internal and external broadcasting, international and clandestine broadcasters that manage to penetrate through the regime’s jamming, as well as descriptions and photographs of the media infrastructure used by the North Korean regime as the prime instrument of control over the population.

In addition to the ever-popular annual forums on scanning and unlicensed broadcasting (otherwise known as pirate radio), the 2014 Fest program also will feature the following sessions and presenters (subject to revision):

Radio Broadcasting: The Earliest Years – Dr. Harold Cones
Navigating a Future for the Radio Hobby – Sheldon Harvey, President of the Canadian International DX Club
Internet Radio 2.0 – Rob DeSantos
A Practical Guide to Loop Antennas – Jef Eichner
Developing a Shortwave Radio Archive – Thomas Witherspoon, President of Ears to Our World
Whatever Happened to Digital Radio? – Mark Phillips
Ionosounders and Other Real Time Propagation Aids – Tracy Wood
Ham Radio Tools for SWLs – Skip Arey

There’s also David Goren’s Friday night Shortwave Shindig radio studio party, as well as brief talks by Paul Ladd on World Christian Broadcasting’s shortwave transmitter projects, Allen Loudell of WDEL radio on trends in U.S. commercial radio, especially news/talk radio; and Sheldon Harvey’s annual tribute to those who departed us for a “higher station” over the last year. Not to mention: the Saturday night banquet and Grande Raffle!

Why not join us at the 27th Annual Winter SWL Fest? Details on location, registration, meals and lodging are available from the official web site: swlfest.com.

Remembering radio enthusiast Jay Smilkstein

I’ve only attended the Winter SWLFest for  four years thus far, yet the friends I’ve made there have become like family. It shouldn’t be a surprise, really; we’re all passionate about radio and things related to radio and broadcasting. It’s an event where we can be who we are–no need to explain to these compatriots why you like tuning in shortwave stations, while the internet seems (at least to everyone else) to be so much easier.

Jay had a strong interest in AM DXing, tube gear, amplifiers and, I learned this year, IF filter design.

Jay Smilkstein, 1961-2012.

Our friend Jay was, I believe, at the higher-functioning end of the autism spectrum.  While Jay had some social hang-ups and behaviors that made some uncomfortable, fortunately, at the SWLFest, there were a number of folks who went out of their way to take Jay under a wing, assist him with personal interactions, and generally welcome him back  each year.

I’m pretty sure that he considered the SWLFest, and many he’d interacted with over the airwaves, his radio family, too.

Jay passed away suddenly from a heart attack two days ago, on Monday, March 12th, 2012.

As my friend, David, phrased it:  Long may you ride the radio waves you loved so much.