April 9, 2019
It’s April, it’s Springtime, and radio is in the air! This is going to be a great month for enjoying our hobby!
As I write this, there is a massive sunspot coming around the edge of the Sun. Enormous. It’s so big that as it’s coming around the edge it literally looks like a chunk of Sun is missing. I’m supporting the Farmers Branch Star Party on Tuesday and will have both of my solar telescopes out to look at it. I’m hoping that it really lights up the ionosphere so that by this weekend the bands will be hopping!
That’s because this weekend is Texas State Parks On The Air (TSPOTA)! MARS will be at Ray Roberts State Park – Johnson Branch Unit with hot dogs for lunch, burgers for dinner, and radios and antennas for playing. Plan on coming out. You go north of Denton a few miles, go through Sanger and then turn right and go a few miles to the Park entrance. Follow the park road all the way to the end – we’ll be set up in the Pavilion. It’s a very pretty spot. The weather is forecast to be cloudy, an occasional shower (the Pavilion is covered so no worries) and winds are moderate. Temperatures are expected to be in the 60s and 70s. And, maybe with this “mother-of-all-sunspots,” propagation will be great too! If you are planning to come out, please PLEASE go to the signup sheet on the website and give Andy a fighting chance to have enough hotdogs and burgers. Those who sign up eat first; those who don’t sign up eat whatever is left!
If you can’t join us to “activate” the park, please try and contact as many parks as you can between 1pm and 10pm on Saturday. It’s not a contest, but there are points. And if you want to camp out at the park, talk to Andy KE5KOF. I think all the RV spots are reserved but one never knows about last minute openings. Last I checked, there were still plenty of tent campsites.
Elections are coming up, as they do every year. We have a number of openings and it’s your turn to take an office for a year or two. Contact the Nominating Committee and let them know which office you prefer. It’s your club, and your club needs you! You just have to be a Full or Lifetime member 21 or older and have been a member continuously for 12 months before June. And be willing to give back a little to your fellow club members. It’s easy – you can do it!
Did you attend the Shreveport or Belton hamfests? Did you acquire anything fun? Come to the club meeting and tell everyone about it – we all want to know. I didn’t get it at a hamfest, but my latest muse is a Kenwood TH-D74A. This is a tri-band HT with FM and Dstar, a built-in TNC for Winlink and APRS, and more fun than a barrel full of monkeys. Seriously. Way too much fun!
We’ll be meeting at the Carrollton Fire Administration building this month. That’s at the Gravley Center, downtown. If you turn off Beltline onto Broadway take the first driveway to the right – it’s a 180 degree turn that takes you to the parking lot between the overpass and the building. We’ll be upstairs. Easy to find, park and enjoy.
See you at the meeting on Thursday!