MARS to Conduct Interoperability Exercise with Amateur Radio Community

MARSFrom 30 October through 1 November, members of the Military Auxiliary Radio System will be conducting a quarterly Department of Defense Contingency Communications exercise. The purpose of this quarterly exercise is train on our ability to provide communications following a “very bad day” scenario when traditional forms of communications will likely be unavailable. While the simultaneous loss of all communications nation-wide is not likely, for training purposes, we are assuming there has been a massive nation-wide outage.

One of the objectives of this exercise is to continue the partnership with the amateur radio community to help provide information about local conditions and send this information to the Department of Defense to help understand what is happening around the United States.

During this exercise, we will use 60 meters, local VHF and UHF repeaters as well as HF NVIS amateur radio bands. Our goal is to have a conversation about the local conditions in and around your county. During the conversation, our operators will be asking basic questions such as the status of commercial power, public water systems, and road conditions. These will be person to person conversations…you don’t need to use any digital modes or know any special messaging formats.

To kick off this exercise, we are encouraging the amateur radio community to monitor 5,330.5KHz from 0300-0400 Hrs Zulu on 31 October. During this hour, we will be doing a high power voice broadcast from a military station on the east coast and alternate with a voice broadcast from the west coast. Amateur radio operators are encouraged to submit a reception report as indicated in the voice broadcast.

For the remainder of the exercise, MARS personnel will be calling for amateur radio operators on the 60 meter channels as well as using already established amateur radio nets on HF NVIS and VHF/UHF repeaters.

Amateur radio operators are also invited to attend the ARRL webinar scheduled for 25 Oct at 2000 hrs eastern time where Dave Stapchuk, Chief AF MARS, and the Army MARS Program Manager will give a presentation about the MARS program. Please register for the webinar here.

Additional information is on the U.S. Army MARS Facebook page.

New England QSO Party

New England QSO PartyThe New England QSO Party is coming up the first full weekend in May. Time for New England stations to be the hunted!

The contest runs in two sessions over the weekend:

2000Z Saturday May 7 until 0500Z Sunday May 8 (4pm EDT Saturday until 1am EDT Sunday)

1300Z Sunday May 8 until 2400Z Sunday May 8 (9am EDT Sunday until 8pm EDT Sunday)

Suggested CW frequencies are 3540, 7035, 14040, 21040, and 28040. Suggested SSB frequencies are 3850, 7180, 7280, 14280, 21380 and 28380.

More details on the contest are available on the New England QSO Party’s website.

Training for ARES ECs, DECs, SECs

WMA ARESARRL Headquarters will be offering a training session for ARES Emergency Coordinators, District Emergency Coordinators and Section Emergency Coordinators on local, section, and state level Memorandums of Understanding for ARES. The training webinar will be Tuesday May 24, 2016 at 8pm Eastern Time. You may register for the webinar here. The webinar will be recorded and made available online afterward. All EC’s, DEC’s and SEC’s are encouraged to participate.

— Mike Corey, KI1U, ARRL Emergency Preparedness Manager.

KA1OTQ, Southern Worcester County DEC, SK

KA1OTQIt is with regret and sadness that we must convey that the Southern Worcester County DEC Bob Beausoleil KA1OTQ has recently passed away and become a Silent Key.

Bob was involved with amateur radio in the section and locally for several decades, including being Sutton Chain of Lights Communications Coordinator and being the Net Manager for the Sunday morning ARES net on the W1BIM machine.

Bob’s obituary can be viewed here.

Boxboro Updates

ARRL New England Division Convention at BoxboroPhil Temples, K9HI, Program Chair for the ARRL New England Division Convention at Boxboro sends his regards and has provided a couple of updates on this year’s convention.

As previously announced, the New England Division Convention is now an annual event.

Please note the date change for the convention:  September 9-11, 2016.

Last, the Boxboro Committee is now looking for speakers at this year’s convention. As a Boxboro speaker, you will have the opportunity to share your subject and knowledge with Amateur Radio operators from around New England, surrounding states, and Canada! More info on registering as a speaker at Boxboro is available on our website.

QST to All Massachusetts Hams – S1685 Needs You!

Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015Western MA Section Manager Ed Emco W1KT recently received a personalized note from ARRL President Kay Craigie N3KN regarding how important Massachusetts amateur radio operators are for the passage of S. 1685, The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 right now.  She writes:

We are at a critical time for S. 1685, The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015, in the United States Senate. There is reason to think this legislation will be considered in the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation as early as next week. That is an extremely important step in the bill’s progress towards success.
We have learned that opponents of the legislation have urged their members to contact members of the Senate committee to communicate what can only be called bald-faced lies about the bill’s intent and effects.

A number of steps are being taken to counteract those lies. We have to remind the Senators on the committee that amateur radio operators in their states want them to support the bill. I’m asking for your help as Section Manager.

Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey is on the Commerce committee.

It is quick and easy to do what needs to be done.

Please phone the Senator’s office in Washington, DC, at or phone a local office. Or send an e-mail to the Senator using his official web page.

The message is simple: “I’m a constituent and an amateur radio operator. I urge Senator Markey to support S. 1685, the Amateur Radio Parity Act, when it comes up for a vote in committee on November 18th. Thank you.”

The Senator’s Washington, DC, phone number is posted at

His own web page showing local office numbers is at

Whether you phone or e-mail, the key thing is to do it now. As in, today.

If your Section has a web page or Facebook page, please this appeal there today. Whatever you can do to urge ARRL members in Massachusetts to contact the Senator right now and urge his support will be very important and deeply appreciated.

Sincere thanks and 73, Kay N3KN

Regardless if you are an ARRL member or not, if you are a licensed amateur radio operator living within Massachusetts, please consider following through with President Craigie’s request. Let’s show our support for our fellow amateurs that need this bill passed to put up a decent antenna system!

President Craigie also wrote directly to the Senate subcommittee yesterday on the ARRL’s behalf.  This can be viewed at:

Revitalized Massachusetts / Rhode Island Phone Net

WMA NTSWe are very happy to announce, that, beginning next Tuesday, October 6, we will be reinstating the Massachusetts Rhode Island Phone Net, MARIPN. The net will meet on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 1800 hours local time. The net frequency will be 3978 KHz, plus or minus to avoid QRM.

The primary purpose of the net is NTS traffic. Once any traffic has been disposed time will be set aside for general round table and information sharing. Please spread the word. We hope that there will be enough interest to warrant continuation of this net.

Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
1800 local time
3978 KHz, plus or minus

Marcia KW1U
WMA / EMA Section Traffic Manager

Relay for Life of Greater Gardner Special Event Station

Mohawk ARCThe Mohawk Amateur Radio Club will be running special event station N1C “Number 1 Cure” at the Relay for Life of Greater Gardner on Friday, June 12th and Saturday, June 13th 2015. 2000 UTC Friday until 2200 UTC Saturday. The goal is use amateur radio to raise awareness of the great work of the American Cancer Society, the Relay for Life of Greater Gardner, and all the local volunteers who contribute countless hours of their time to fight cancer and help find a cure.

Suggested Frequencies (+/-):
7.180 MHz, 14.295 MHz, 21.280 MHz, and 28.400 MHz. Also look for them in the General portion of the 80m phone band.

QSL Information:
Please send a SASE to: Bill Leger, 18 Madison Way, Hubbardston, MA 01452