The North American chapter of FISTS - the International Morse Preservation Society, is attempting to comeback from its near-death experience.

The once thriving organization was halted by the untimely death of Nancy Kott, WZ8C. Nancy had managed nearly every club detail for many years until she became a Silent Key in 2014.

Following that, FISTS-NA fell mostly silent too.

But I happened across a note in another club newsletter a few days ago announcing a nice incentive for new and past members to join (rejoin) the fold with a free two-year membership offer:

A “one time” extension of two FREE years membership has been added to all expired memberships from Jan 1, 2017 to Aug 15, 2018, due to no Keynote newsletters being produced during that time frame. This two year extension started on Aug 15, 2018.

All paid memberships as of Aug 15, 2018 were automatically given a “one time” FREE extension of two years membership.

Any previous members with lapsed dues that are not included in item [1] or [2] above and wish to renew their membership, may ask for and receive a “one time” two year FREE extension of membership, from the date of their request.

If you wish to join FISTS as a “New Member”, you will receive a FREE “one time” two year complimentary membership which includes downloaded newsletters ONLY.

There was even a suggestion that dues may be permanently suspended if the organization can attract enough interest and maybe raise a few bucks through merchandise sales and donations.

As a past member (6641) I would be pleased to see FISTS resume its role in helping preserve the use of Morse Code for another generation if it can find more than one person to lead the organization into a future filled with popular digital modes and perpetually discouraging band conditions.

I may sound skeptical, but I’m rooting for their success. I hope lots of us take advantage of the two-year offer and while you’re at it, download a free copy of The KeyNote newsletter to get a flavor for the organization.