NCSSB History by "AL" Alred - NCSSB Recollections

K4ZKQ – “Al” - (Continued)

Our evening net sessions were usually preceded and followed by rag chews, technical discussions/differences of opinion, etc. Starting sometime in the mid-sixties, the group held an annual banquet. This was the outgrowth of an impromptu gathering for Chinese food at the Lotus Restaurant, in the 100 block of South Greene Street. At that time this was the only such restaurant in Greensboro. I didn’t participate; therefore this account is the story as I heard it:

A couple of hams commented that they wanted some chow mien and decided to meet for a Saturday night supper; and a couple of others said that they would join them, and then some others said “Yeah, that’s a good idea.” Weldon Fields, W4AJT, recently recalled these names as the hams that joined him at that get-together: Russ Tippet, Bob Akers, Sandy Taylor, Ernie Jones, and Lynwood Judkins.

The idea of an expanded group get-together grew into the annual banquet with upwards of 100 – 125 attending at its peak. We met in Raleigh, NC, (at more than one facility – considering the alleged/admitted antics of self-proclaimed “Dr.” Harry Goforth from Shelby, maybe we couldn’t go to the same place twice), Burlington, NC, Thomasville, NC, Lake Lure, NC (the last one as I recall them) to name a few of the locations.

In addition to the meal, the usual evening’s program of planned entertainment included hilarious (just short of ribald) skits, roasts, parody songs focusing on one or more members’ misfortunes, embarrassments, etc.

Although very enjoyable, the event was discontinued. I think that was due to increasing costs for the facility and meal (guaranteed attendance and related amounts), as well as a lessening of energy/willingness (due to age?) to organize, participate and promote the get-together.

The NC SSBN, as a net group, has a good reputation as a congenial group. However, not so many years ago, 3.938 became a frequency that mirrored (and in some cases went beyond) the general laxness and deterioration in language and attitudes shown on entertainment radio and television.

Some long-time regulars on the frequency viewed this as uncalled for and completely incompatible with the traditional high standards for amateur radio and “spun the knob” as they were told to do when they mentioned the “antics.” Fortunately, that type of behavior appears very infrequently now, and some of the old-timers are beginning to come back. Those of us who “stuck it out” are delighted to have more and more of them coming “back home.” Although I am one of the oldest, I look forward to more years of being a part of this group.


73, Al, K4ZKQ

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