In early April 2020, Geoff ZL3GA announced an activity marathon as a means of engaging amateurs as New Zealand went into a four-week lockdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. An outline can be found at: http://zl3x.com/marathon/
To quote Geoff from an email sent in late December 2020:
“It’s hard to believe that we started this event in April, trying to keep ourselves busy during the Level 4 lockdown (in ZL) and here we are just a few days before the end of a year we’ll never forget.
Lee ZL2AL was a mentor to many of us and I know that he’d be very happy that an event bearing his name has again stirred up activity on the HF bands over a prolonged period.
A big thanks to Mark ZL3AB for coming up with the concept, running the original event back in 2016 and encouraging/supporting me with this year’s event.
Some have asked if it will run again in 2021. The answer is no. I feel a 4 year cycle is about right as it gives the organisers a rest (there is a lot of work involved each month) and ensures that the event doesn’t become stale. And there are plenty of other “challenge” events to participate in each year if that is your wish.
For those who have been submitting monthly logs – you can continue to do that for this last month and I’ll aggregate all your logs to produce the final total of qualifying days and number of DXCCs worked.”
The Activity Marathon ran from 0000Z 4 April 2020 to 2359Z 31 December 2020.
Several amateurs had been submitting logs at the end of each month.
It is anticipated that a summary will be published in the NZART journal Break In in early 2021.
Despite a few challenges, I did manage to participate and managed at least four contacts on each UTC day for the duration of the Marathon – 272 days. Although chasing DX was not a particular aim, I worked 86 DXCC entities during the Marathon. I received the certificate from Geoff ZL3GA a few days ago.
Thanks to Geoff for running the Marathon. Many thanks to all who participated, but especially to those “Regulars” who were on air just after 000Z each day on CW. I am sure that many will have received certificates.