News

President’s Corner

October 2017

Hi, Hams!

     October is shaping up to be a big month. I’ll use my column to bring you up to date, and to ask for your help.

Club Meeting

     Of course, Thursday is the regular club meeting. If you are ready to upgrade your license, we’ll be testing at 6. Otherwise, we’ll see you at 7 pm at the Carrollton Public Library, Hebron branch.

     This should be a very interesting meeting, with a representative from Icom flying all the way in from wherever he hangs his hat. Details elsewhere in this newsletter/website.

Play Day

     This one’s a head-scratcher. All the usual folk who manage Play Day are tied up with other ham and non-ham events for next Saturday.

     If you can help, please let me know. Basically, you ask the librarian to open the room, then be there to greet folk as they arrive. If you want to put on a program, great, otherwise, just help people get out a table or two and some chairs, and maybe play with their equipment and antennas. Plus your own, if you bring something. Otherwise, if no one steps up, we’ll cancel this month.

     Speaking of which, I’m looking for a Play Day Committee member who can help set up a schedule of builds and Play Day activities for the next twelve months. Could be anything – RaspberryPi or Arduino or similar, especially as applied to ham radio. Interfacing radios and computers. Ham Radio Deluxe (we’ll have a guest speaker on that). Contesting – would be great to show folks how to participate in one of the contest weekends. HT Bootcamp, etc. Can you help? Let me know.

MTC Homecoming (Main Trading Company)

     MTC Radio in Paris Texas is having their big blowout ham fest next Saturday. There are usually a bunch of us that caravan or car pool over there. If you haven’t been to one, I’d highly recommend it. There are great giveaways and discounts. MTC is a friend to MARS and we try to support them. www.mtcradio.com

Mentorfest

     This is Saturday, October 21st (see, I told you October was busy!) It will be at the Betcha Bingo Hall on Irving and Story Road in Irving. It’s supported by the ARRL. And information about it is hard to find although there may be a website.

     They are asking for help setting up chairs and arranging tables early on Saturday, the 21st, and then putting it away in the late afternoon after it’s over. If you can help, please let them know or show up.

     There will be a number of “stations” set up. Each will present an aspect of ham radio. Andy, KE5KOF. and I are thinking of doing PowerPoles – how to terminate them, how they work, what to watch out for, that sort of thing. Most of the stations will have both a short lecture and a practical. Each session is 45 minutes, and then there is a 15-minute break for questions and for moving to the next station. Should be fun. We’ll have a table with some literature, and you are welcome to sit at that table and engage new hams and introduce MARS to them. Or just attend sessions.

Jamboree On The Air (JOTA)

     This is a Boy Scouts of America program on October 21 and 22. We have been approached by an Arrow of Light Pack and we may do an event on Sunday at the Josey Ranch Library. Or not. We haven’t decided. If we do we’ll set up an HF and VHF/UHF station, and probably a DMR and maybe a Dstar station. Scouts get credit for contacting Scouts in other countries, so that would be the setup. It would run from 1pm to 6pm on Sunday the 22nd. If you can help – maybe just come and talk to Scouts about ham radio, maybe set up a station or antenna, maybe help them operate, I need to know.

     If we don’t get enough interest from local Scouts we’ll direct them to a STEM activity in Dallas on Saturday.

     Whew!

     That’s a whole lot of ham radio in one month. Oh, and Belton is this weekend. Hope you made that if you wanted to go. Their hamfest is twice a year, so don’t worry if you missed it.

     See you Thursday!

Kevin, N5KRG