I was fortunate this morning to receive a phone call from my Dad (KU4ME), that NN3SI was on 40 meters calling CQ. I didn't know what NN3SI was at first, but then he informed me that it was the Smithsonian Institute's call and that they were going QRT -- forever -- after tomorrow, July 31st. (Time out -- He would want me to give credit where credit is due, so A Many Thanks goes to Jack, KD4TNY, for spotting them and phoning this morning.)
I was pretty sad to hear that after 32 years of being on exhibit in the National Museum of American History (and in working condition!) that they would be closing down the station forever. I noticed that they claimed that "For most of the three-million visitors to the Museum annually, it was the first – and possibly – only amateur radio station that they had every seen." So sad that such an icon is going to be taken out of the museum.
But I contacted them, and spoke with a really nice "Old Man," Ray (AA4SI) on 7.243 at 14:28z. He verified my address, and told me that they were sending out certificates to those who contacted them during this time. I didn't even know it was going on! I'm always out of the loop :(
In any case, Tim (AJ4JD) came home for an early lunch and contacted him on 20 meters -- on 14.239.90 at 15:37z to be exact. He was pretty happy to be able to get him.
Oh... and another exciting first for me:
I noticed that there was no spot on the DX cluster for NN3SI -- So, I spotted them. My first spot on the cluster! Woo hoo!
Anyway... I was going to stay and play more, but the bands started dying out on me. I might go back in a little while and try again. I need more states if I'm ever going to get WAS.