MARS Works the Switchyard

November 2, 2019

   This year’s Festival at the Switchyard saw a good number of interested fans visit our booth to learn about amateur radio.

   Liz Brown, K5EMB, Dave Lichtenwalter, N2DL, Ron Reeves, NN5R, and Tom Yenny, K5LOL, joined event organizer Steve Darrah, KD5YPB, in the early AM to set up the booth. Mike Brown, W5MDB, produced a slide show highlighting key activities of the ham hobby.

   As in years past, the “Kid Code Key” was a hit with youngsters. A rough count revealed over 150 potential hams tried their “fists.” Liz mentioned that some were repeats from last year who made a point to visit us again. Kevin Grantham, N5KRG, David Lewis, AC5DL, James Jernigan, KG5WVL, and Ken Wendel, W5RPS, all took a turn explaining the intricacies of Morse code. A special thanks goes to James for returning later in the evening to help wrap the booth.

   This year we enjoyed a special visit by our North Texas Section Youth Coordinator, Katherine Forson, KT5KMF. Katherine worked the Kid Code Key table, encouraging our visitors to check out amateur radio. Thanks go to “Drivers” Pat and Bob Forson, K5WFR, for Katherine’s transportation.

   Andy Parcel, KE5KOF, as a member of Carrollton’s Citizen Patrol, provided support from the off-premises HQ.

   Steve thanked all who volunteered to work the event. This is our best opportunity to show off amateur radio to the public. Planning for next year’s booth starts now. Contact Steve for your best ideas about how to promote ham radio. Meanwhile, check out the gallery below.

MARS Booth Banner

Setup crew Tom Yenny K5LOL, Dave Lichtenwalter N2DL, Ron Reeves NN5R, Liz Brown K5EMB, and Steve Darrah KD5YPB

Dave Lichtenwalter N2DL and Ron Reeves NN5R hanging posters

Booth on Broadway ready for visitors

Kevin Grantham N5KRG and James Jernigan KG5WVL

Ron Reeves NN5R and Liz Brown K5EMB at the Kid Code Key table

Kevin Grantham N5KRG coaching a potential brass pounder

Tom Yenny K5LOL explaining bandwidth to a captivated audience

Tom Yenny K5LOL acts as control operator while a future ham makes his first QSO

ARRL North Texas Section Youth Coordinator Katherine Forson KT5KMF with “drivers” Pat and Bob Forson K5WFR

ARRL North Texas Section Youth Coordinator Katherine Forson KT5KMF

Katherine Forson KT5KMF promoting amateur radio

Katherine’s driver Pat takes a turn at the key

Pat and Katherine share a high five

Kid Code Keyer

Transcribing names into Morse

Another future ham

MARS ran a slide show about amateur radio (Steve KD5YPB in the scene)

J-pole seeking signals.

73 from MARS at the Switchyard