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Updated July 30, 2023

MARS Hams Return to Philmont

   Dale Finley, KB5NFT, and Dale Hiatt, K5MAY, will travel to Cimarron, New Mexico to demonstrate amateur radio July 19–28. Using the call K5PSR, the two Dales will operate from the Philmont Scout Ranch during the day using voice and digital.

   Their event coincides with the Boy Scout National Jamboree being held at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia. Finley and Hiatt expect to make contacts with hams at the Jamboree as well as operators around the world. Please go here for a list of operating frequencies and conversation starters you can use when you talk to the Scouts on the air.

   The event is sponsored by Hamventures, Inc. Its mission is to promote and demonstrate amateur radio to a variety of organizations. If you wish to contribute to this cause, please visit For more information, please contact

DMR Repeater Updates

   Dave Lane, N5GDL, has updated his DMR (digital mobile radio) repeater (440.450/445.450) to add a new talkgroup and remove some others. New is the North Texas-Wide talkgroup. Dave recommends operators edit their codeplugs to reflect the changes. Please go here to download the new list. You’ll find more information on the DMR page and on the LINKS page. If you have any questions about DMR, you can send Dave an email

New Board of Directors for 2023–24

(L-R) Mike Brown W5MDB, Secretary; Tom Yenny K5LOL, Director; Kevin Grantham N5KRG, Immediate Past President; Liz Brown K5EMB, Treasurer; Allan Batteiger WB5QNG, Director; Steve Darrah KD5YPB, Vice-President; Darrell Crimmins KG5E, Director; and David Gilpin K5GIL, President.

   At the annual meeting on June 8, the Membership elected the slate of candidates for Club officers for 2023–24 . They are:

     President—David Gilpin, K5GIL;

     Vice-President—Steve Darrah, KD5YPB;

     Secretary—Mike Brown, W5MDB;

     Treasurer—Liz Brown, K5EMB;

     Director—Allan Batteiger, WB5QNG.

   Directors Darrell Crimmins, KG5E, and Tom Yenny, K5LOL, and Immediate Past President Kevin Grantham, N5KRG, will continue to serve their unexpired terms.

   The new officers will begin their terms on July 1. Thanks go to outgoing officers Vice-President Andy Parcel, KE5KOF, and Treasurer J. J. Henry, N5IMS, for their service.

Texas State Parks a Success

     With fluffy white clouds and mild temperatures, MARS hams ventured to the Johnson Branch Unit of Ray Roberts Lake State Park on April 15 for an excellent activation. Tom Yenny, K5LOL, led the expedition into the woods for a day of amateur radio excitement. Five stations worked 160(!) through 10 meters on HF, and SSB on 2 and 6 meters.

     A 50-foot tower provided by Perry Schrag, N0PAS, was the focal point of our setup and supported an 80-meter dipole, a 6-meter Moxon and a 2-meter beam, as well as a multiband loop. Our antenna farm included a 2-meter stick for our talk-in frequency. Thanks go to the Denton County Amateur Radio Association for the use of their repeater.

     In the culinary arts department, David Gilpin, K5GIL, brought all the fixins’ and George Williams, KG5GXU, slaved over a hot grill to serve up hot dogs and burgers. There’s something about outdoor grilling in the woods that enhances the flavor.

     Andrew Smolenski, KI5YLX, scored first DX with a strong station in Hawaii. Other operators found the bands generally open. Austin Litman, N4AKL, Ken Wendel, W5RPS, Ron Reeves, NN5R, Caleb Foley, NB5D, Ralph Foley, K8XZ, Caden Foley, W9EP, and Mike Brown, W5MDB, all had their turns on the air. Gregory Maddra, KG5CKX, and Liz Brown, K5EMB, were on hand to offer their support as well.

     MARS welcomed Boy Scout Troop 229 from Princeton, Texas, and Tom Yenny explained the role of amateur radio in today’s world. We may expect some future hams from their ranks.

     Many thanks go to Tom for spearheading the project, to Steve Darrah, KD5YPB, for securing the park pavilion and thanks go especially to the staff of the Johnson Branch Unit for providing such excellent accommodations.

     The final stats have not yet been compiled from the logs; updates will follow. Meanwhile, check out the photo gallery for all the activities.

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