Sixteenth Annual Ohio State Parks On The Air – Amateur Radio Contest

Hello OSPOTA Fans,

The 16th annual Ohio State Parks On The Air (OSPOTA) contest will be held on Saturday – September 9, 2023. This contest as always held on the first Saturday following the Labor Day holiday.

The OSPOTA contest was conceived with three main goals in mind:
1. To promote public awareness of amateur radio and Ohio’s beautiful state parks system
2. To contribute to the recognition that Ohio has a very diverse and wonderful ecology
3. To promote camaraderie within the ranks of Ohio’s Amateur Radio Operators

Your participation has allowed these goals to be achieved. We agree it is a lot of fun to get out in a natural setting with your radio and see how well you can do at working operators in the beautiful Ohio State Parks.

The contest hours will be from 1400 UTC to 2200 UTC (10 am to 6 pm ET).

The contest committee has been busy going over the rules and information about the contest, please check for any changes in the rules

Please be aware only Electronic (Cabrillo files) will be accepted for entries. No text, pdf, csv, adif, bin, photos of logs, paper, etc. Comparing contest logs is being changed and we need your log file in standard Cabrillo format.

We hope this year’s OSPOTA is bigger and better.

At this point, there will be 75 Ohio State Parks open for 2023. (ODNR reports there will be a new State Park opening in 2023, but per our rules, it will not be considered as an active park until the following full year – 2024).

As in the past – you can let us know which State Park you plan on activating and we’ll keep everyone informed. Send your planned park info to: and please include the call to be used.

73 from the OSPOTA Contest Committee 



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Logging With N3FJP OHQP Software

N3FJP has created a wonderful suite of software that covers most if not all Amateur Radio Contests. With a minor tweak, you can also use it for OSPOTA. It requires only 2 things:

  1. The instructions, which you can find at and
  2. a modified counties file, which you can find at

I say this every year, but as always, please don’t try this unless you are comfortable renaming, and moving files on your computer.

First, make sure that you have the most recent version of the N3FJP Ohio QSO Party IN-State QSO Party Log installed. I have tested this with Ohio QSO Party version 4.6.4, and it works like a charm. Use the Ohio In-State QSO Party Log Version 4.6.4 which is the latest Scott charges a very minimal fee for this software.


If you do not have the software installed, do so now. Enter your registration code that Scott will send you, and ensure that everything works. All set? Cool! Now let’s lift the hood!

Make sure to download both files I mentioned above. One are the instructions; the other the data file. Let’s start with a couple Caveats:

1) You are modifying the N3FJP OHQP software to do something that it was not designed to do. If you keep this in mind, then this can be a valid option for OSPOTA. I’ve used it for the last several years, and it works like a charm for OSPOTA. It also logs the band & frequency from your rig. All that is required is a replacement of one file.

2) Don’t rely on this for scoring. This modification is for duping purposes only. You will do the scoring after the contest ends.

3) PLEASE Make sure that your computer clock is correct, and that you are logging in UTC. For you Multi transmitter groups, this applies to ALL computers on your logging network.

After the contest cabrillo generation is a snap.

1) Look at the File menu for “Write Cabrillo (Contest Submittal) File”, and click it. Once you create your Cabrillo file, and save it to your computer, open it in a text editor, and correct as needed. For instance: CONTEST: MRCC-OHQP should be changed to CONTEST: OSPOTA CLAIMED SCORE This entire line can be deleted since we use the score from the summary sheet that you fill out and submit.

2) Save cabrillo using the convention “[YOUR CALLSIGN].log“, and you are good to go. This is the cabrillo that you will submit with your summary sheet.

Look for more information soon on formatting Cabrillo files.

John Myers, WG8X

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Let’s talk about Logging. In short, use whatever logging software makes you happy. But, remember to log all the pertinent information for each contact (ie callsign, time, date, mode, and QTH). Use the proper park abbreviations for Ohio State Parks. OSPOTA has been around since 2008, and we have our own three character abbreviations for Ohio State Parks.

You can find our abbreviations for the Ohio State Parks at

Whatever logging program you use should be able to generate a Cabrillo file.

ACLog will NOT generate a cabrillo file.
This is not POTA; we don’t accept ADI files.

At the end of the day, as long as you can create a proper Cabrillo file for submitting your entry, we’ll accept it. Each year, I put myself out there to help with logging questions. I will sometimes volunteer AS TIME PERMITS, to try to salvage logs that folks are having trouble with.

Feel free to reach out to me ( with questions.

One last thing though, My phone goes into do not disturb mode a couple hours before the contest. That way, I can enjoy the contest too. Please test your logger ahead of time. Also, can we get a round of applause for the rest of the board members that run this contest?

Tom, KB8UUZ (Chairman)
Chuck, W8PT
Joe, W8KNO
John, KB8UHN

73, John Myers, WG8X

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