Every day is a good day to send CW, but January 1 is reserved for Straight Key Night (SKN), sponsored by ARRL. Enjoy CW as it has been sent and enjoyed since the earliest days of Amateur Radio. The 24-hour event, which gets under way at 0000 UTC on January 1 (New Year’s Eve in US time zones), is not a contest but a day dedicated to celebrating Amateur Radio’s Morse heritage. Participants are encouraged to get on the air and enjoy conversational CW contacts, preferably while using a straight key or a semi-automatic key (“bug”). No points! Everyone’s a winner. Submit your votes for best fist and most interesting QSO.
The ARRL International Grid Chase 2018 kicks off on January 1 at 0000 UTC, so SKN is a chance to combine the two events!
The First-Class CW Operators’ Club sponsors a concurrent event, FOC Bug Day, concurrent with SKN. FOC asks for a description of the bug or bugs used, a list of stations worked, and a vote for best bug fist heard to FOC Bug Day Manager Benny Owens, K5KV.
AMSAT will sponsor its second-annual satellite CW Activity Day on January 1. This year’s event is dedicated to the memory of Pat Gowen, G3IOR. No rules. Just have fun. Just operate CW through any ham radio satellite. The use of straight keys and bugs is encouraged but not required.