[CQ-Contest] QSO Parties

David A. Pruett k8cc at ix.netcom.com
Tue May 4 14:56:05 EDT 1999

Speaking as someone who has not been much of a "state QSO partier" over the
years, up until a month ago I would have probably agreed with you. 
However, after recently having taken over the sponsorship of the Michigan
QSO Party and having worked the contest full time, my opinion has reversed
180 degrees.

Is a state QSO party a contest?  Absolutely.  However, the argument that
because stations outside of the target area generally cannot "run" stations
makes this less of a contest is simply missing the point.

Hey, I like running rate as much as the next guy but it is but one skill in
the a top contester's tool set.  Operating only in contests where you can
be the center of attention is pandering to ego and nothing more.  Events
which force you to search for stations exercises other skills which are
valuable in CQWW, SS, etc.  But if you don't like to do this, that's OK. 
Go watch TV.

I was gratified that some well known contesters came by during MIQP to give
K8CC/M a QSO.  For example, according to the log John, K4BAI sent in, he
spent four hours working MIQP from the state of Georgia.  I'll bet the
skills he was honing that weekend will serve him well the next time he goes
up against us all in CQWW...  Guys that are good get that way by operating,
not by complaining about contest formats.

If you don't like state QSO parties - fine, but many people do.  However,
simply having a general contest sponsored by a particular state has no real
point.  I have no interest in operating in such an event, and I'll bet many
others wouldn't either.



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