Home | Back to DX History

Excerpted from "The 18th Annual Winter SWL Festival--The FEST Never Ends,"
by Richard A. D'Angelo

"The Friday lunch break is on your own with the exhibit area staying open for those interested in conversations and checking out the displays.  George Zeller and I made a special side trip during the lunch break.  Jerry Berg, through his constant and never ending On the Shortwaves research, told us about a location in nearby Lansdale where the 1951 Newark News Radio Club ("NNRC") convention and picnic was held through 1951.  For many years the NNRC held a summer convention at a place called Mapine Farm, which was the home of NNRCers Harold and Mary Robinson.  The Robinsons sold the "farm" shortly after the 1951 picnic, making this gathering the last one on these hallowed DX grounds.  Unlike the FEST, bingo, horseshoe pitching and beanbag tossing were popular activities, with the wives winning most of the activities (spouses at a radio convention?).  Jerry supplied a map to the Mapine Farm location, with travel directions to nearby Lansdale.  George and I had been planning to make this side trip for the last two weeks leading up to this year's FEST, with the constant prodding of Señor Berg.  The map was essentially still accurate some five decades later, with the only exception being the last turn, where some industrial company apparently bought the land in the ensuing years and closed off a road that was once a public street.  Nevertheless, we were able to find the exact location.  Unfortunately, we did not find any old NNRC members playing horseshoes or holding potato sack races on the picnic grounds.  Today the old Mapine Farm location of the 1951 NNRC Summer Convention and Picnic is Schweiker Park.  The park is home to a number of little league baseball fields where Lansdale's finest play ball and graffiti the dugouts."

1951 NNRC Convention - For many years, through 1951, the NNRC held a summer convention at a place called Mapine Farm (Lansdale, PA), which was the home of NNRCers Harold and Mary Robinson. The accompanying report on the 1951 convention describes what these events were like. And from an early NNRC bulletin we have a map of how to get there!
(Left) George Zeller standing by the Schweiker Park sign where the 1951 NNRC Summer Picnic was held when it was known as Mapine Farms.
(Left) Rich D'Angelo standing next to the little league dugout at Schweiker Park where the 1951 NNRC Summer Picnic was held.
(Left) George Zeller poses in front of the scoreboard at Schweiker Park.