County, fairgrounds preparing for Hamvention


By Anna Bolton - adewine@civitasmedia.com



file photo Michael Kalter, CFO of Hamvention, spoke out in August 2016 about moving the annual event from Hara Arena to the Greene County Fairgrounds.


XENIA — Greene County commissioners received an update on Hamvention, the world’s largest amateur radio gathering, which will be held Friday-Sunday, May 19-21 at the Greene County Fairgrounds and Expo Center.

Kathleen Wright, executive director for the county’s convention and visitors bureau, took the podium at the commissioners’ meeting Feb. 23 to report on past community events as well as upcoming events, like Hamvention.

“We continue to work really closely with the Hamvention folks, the fairgrounds, the county, and the City of Xenia to make sure this event is going to be what they call a ‘five-star event,’ ” Wright said.

According to Wright, Hamvention officials are excited about the relocation. Hamvention announced in August 2016 that it would move to the fairgrounds, a 38-acre complex and campgrounds, after spending the last 52 years at Hara Arena in Trotwood.

“They expect more people this year than they’ve had in previous years because people are curious, they’re excited. The food is going to be better, the facilities all-in-all are going to be better,” Wright said. “We think that it’s going to be a great event.”

As of last week, Wright said Hope Hotel, which is located on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, was the only hotel in Greene County with rooms still available. Wright said that guests are also finding accommodations at county camping and RV areas. She said she will refer people to neighboring counties once all the Greene County hotels are filled.

Wright also reported that plans are underway with the Ohio Department of Transportation for the installation of highway signage to direct drivers to the fairgrounds, which will be useful for Hamvention as well as future events.

County Commissioner Alan Anderson raised the question of traffic flow during the weekend. According to Wright, Hamvention has a traffic engineer and is working with the county, city and fairgrounds to plan accordingly.

Hamvention was also discussed during a Feb. 9 work session in which County Administrator Brandon Huddleson reported on additional updates, including that parking numbers had grown from 3,500 to 7,000 cars, and that some local schools will close that Friday for additional parking use.

file photo Michael Kalter, CFO of Hamvention, spoke out in August 2016 about moving the annual event from Hara Arena to the Greene County Fairgrounds.
http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/50/2017/02/web1_Hamvention.jpgfile photo Michael Kalter, CFO of Hamvention, spoke out in August 2016 about moving the annual event from Hara Arena to the Greene County Fairgrounds.

By Anna Bolton

adewine@civitasmedia.com

Reach Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498.

Reach Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498.