NEAR-fest Friday April 29 + Saturday April 30, 2022 I arrived at 7AM on Friday to get in the "Club" early admission line that gets two vehicles in from each club that has previously applied for and been granted actual "Club passes". This is a fantastic benefit to get in 1 hour ahead of the gate opener for general admission at 9AM and set up a spot for fellow club members to be together. (Thank you NEAR-fest!) The weather was a cool 50-55 degrees, overcast with a constant wind of 10-20mph, gusting to 30mph. I had a wind burned face and hands when the day was done despite my leathered New England skin. When the general admission gate opened the line was 3 lanes wide all the way across the fairgrounds out to the road. By 10:30 AM the fleamarket area was in full swing. Pretty good turnout from my perspective. I saw a lot of used equipment selling for less than "internet prices". I put up the canopy, Dale @KA5WHO and Rick @K1RJZ set up tables together. Other members and friends stopped by to sit down for social enjoyment. (My main purpose for going!) I wondered through the commercial buildings in the afternoon and they seemed fairly busy too. As the temperature fell, by 5pm many people had closed shop for the night. Some packed up and left for the night, which isn't unusual. I made sausage subs for they guys and we sat around and had a great in person ragchew as it got dark. I had planned to sleep on an air mattress in the back of my truck, but 45° at 10pm, my "bedroom" no where ready, I decided that 1 hour drive home wasn't all that bad. Dale stayed over night onsite. Saturday, I returned at 7AM. The wind was calm, partly sunny skies and warming temperatures. It eventually warmed to ~60°, wind came back to 5-10mph. Pretty good weather compared to Friday. Around 9AM other hams had either come back or new ones arrived. (some people don't have Friday off). I guestimate about 80% of the sellers compared to Friday. There seemed to be more "buyers" on Saturday because that's when actual sales seemed to happen for me. Burt @K1OIK was my only paying customer on Friday. Things wind down in after noon on Saturdays. Official closing ceremonies and door prize drawings at 2pm. We were packed up, cleaned up and on the road by 3pm. All in all the general turnout was pretty good. I am guessing ~2K attendees. Thanks to Mike @W1RC for leading the charge and many thank you's to the entire group of volunteers that make NEAR-fest happen!!!!! https://near-fest.com/ The pirates of 603 ARC can't wait to come back in October!!