New England Division Convention at Boxboro

The ARRL New England Division Convention at Boxboro will be on September 7, 8 and 9 at the Boxboro Regency Hotel & Conference Center.

General Admission grants access to the Flea Market, Forums & Classes, Vendors, and the Theatrical Screening! It also grants you an opportunity to win one of our fabulous Door Prizes.  Among some of the many other attractions at Boxboro are the W1A Special Event Station, the Friday night DXCC/Contest dinner and the Saturday night Grand Banquet.

Those interested in getting their Technician class amateur radio license would find the Tech-in-a-Day class of interest. The class culminates in a license exam session. The exam session is also open to all, so those of us already licensed can easily take an exam and upgrade our license at convention as well.

It’s just $15, good for all three days, and special free admission for full-time students with student ID (including college students!).

General Admission tickets will also be available in advance at some retail locations, and will additionally be sold at the convention.

All proceeds, donations and profits from Boxboro go to the ARRL Foundation.

NoBARC Hamfest

The Northern Berkshire Amateur Radio Club will be holding it’s annual hamfest on Sunday, August 19.  The hamfest will be held at the George Bowe Field (Adams Agricultural Fair Grounds), located directly off of Route 8 in Adams, MA.

Gates open at 6:30 AM for vendors and sellers, 7:00 AM for buyers.  Admission is $5 for adult, kids under 12 are free.  Sellers and vendors cot will be an additional $10.

Talk-in will be on the K1FFK Mt. Greylock repeater, 146.91 MHz, PL 162.2.

There will be an amateur radio exam session at 9:00 AM at the hamfest, for anyone wishing to get licensed or upgrade.

There will also be a raffle at 11:00 AM.  Presence not required to win the raffle.  Tickets at $4.00 each or 3 for $10.00.  Prizes are:

  1. Yaesu FTM100DR 2m/70cm C4FM/FM mobile transceiver and a Yaesu HRI-200 WIRES-X Internet Linking Kit
  2. Yaesu FTM3200DR 2m C4FM/FM mobile transceiver
  3. Yaesu FT70DR 2m/70cm C4FM/FM handheld transceiver

Section Manager Report July 2018

Hello, I hope all of had some good downtime and enjoyed the fine summer weather. I have been trying to get some things done, but it seems I get one thing done, two more come up. I’m sure most of you can relate.

So, as we work on our BBQ skills and sunburns, the League is very busy with some long, anticipated items which now is now coming to light. In the upcoming edition of QST, there will be more information regarding ARES and the new structure in greater detail. There is a period from now to the end of October for comments then a final plan is due for around January. Please read carefully and get your comments in. I still could use a Section Emergency Coordinator to help get what I consider a new Ares program off the ground. Two close calls in July. Are we ready??

The other one of interest is the OO program. Guess what, it’s going bye-bye. An entirely new program is launching and they call it the Volunteer Monitoring Program. It is now being negotiated with the FCC for a new Memorandum of Understanding. This new program will have frequent trainings, reporting is different, technical requirements and also will have limited terms and will need to reapply to retain that position. Again, more details will be forthcoming.

These changes can potentially make a section manager’s hair get whiter, rapidly. It is more important now that the section as a whole work together to regroup and pull together as a team to accomplish this work. Crickets cannot do this.

September is coming swiftly and so is our Convention in Boxboro. It is on Sept 7-9. As some of you know I am planning a talk with the Western Ma section as a talk/meeting. They scheduled me as the last talk before the prize drawings. In short, I’m bringing up the rear. I truly hope you can hang around and attend. I am trying my hardest not to bore you, but if you cannot I will highlight the talk in next month’s report.

That’s enough for now. Hope to see you all at Boxboro

73,
Ray, KB1LRL

Section Manager Report June 2018

Hello Field Day survivors! Now that we have had a week to recover somewhat, we can all recap what we experienced this time around. From the unofficial reports, it appears the vast majority had a very successful event. Well Done!

This year was different for me as this was my first Field Day as SM. Previously I set a goal to visit all the sites and I actually did it. 11 stops and over 600 miles of driving. What I saw gave me a good perspective of different sites, and how they set things up. There are some clubs which appear to be struggling a bit, and there are others which are hopping with activity. I will not go into too many specifics due to space, but, there is evidence of some frustration. The worst part is finding the answer to it. I, myself have and still is in the same predicament as now I have more than 1 club under my leadership and am trying to find the answers. I certainly appreciate those who took the time to give me feedback and showed me around and I also made sure I spent time with everyone.

I was reading a magazine article and they had a similar circumstance they used as an example and to sum it up was three simple words “Activity Breeds Activity”. That caught my eye and what they said was true. Try different activities and find the one that works, especially if other people see it. For example, at one site a father and his 2 boys stopped at a park where a field day was in operation. They went to the observation deck and came down. The father asked what we were doing and we explained what Ham Radio and Field Day was about. The eldest boy seemed interested while the youngest one went in the car to listen to music on guess what? His phone! The young teen was shown the GOTA station and was asked if he wanted to give it a try and did. He took another hour but finally made 2 contacts. We realized after the first one the radio was at 10 watts. I think he was more impressed after we told him. They were visiting the Franklin County group and they live in Natick. When they left they asked me where the nearest clubs were down there. True story. “Activity Breeds Activity”

I have just recently added Paul Toplski W1SEX to the section Tech Specialist joining the others under Brian N1FIY. Brian, Paul, and Cory, our newest ASM with the others have been given a job of discussing and finding a way to get Elmering back to support the new hams who get their licenses, their 1.98 handheld and asks, is there anything else? I feel a big need to get that back online, not only to teach them radio and electronics, but show them what else is there for a new ham to do. They too, need to feel there is value, and support and friendship this great hobby can provide to them. Activity Breeds Activity!

Today I was with a group meeting with Tom K1KI our division director and other New England Presidents, SM’s EC’s, etc. There is a plan to open the band plan to give the tech class people more slices of HF for use under the class. It is now with the FCC and we hope will move fairly quickly. All the clubs in attendance do agree this will help a lot with what I mentioned above. This subject has been kicked around since I started going to these meetings and we are now seeing progress. The League knows they need to do a better job with new hams and also youth. It is their future also.

A lot went on this month. I can go on and on but I won’t. I was impressed with so many things at field day. My hope is to build on that success. And to ask you to help your neighboring club if they need it. There are no territorial rights. We just have a common goal. Amateur Radio. Have a great Summer.

73,
Ray KB1LRL

WMA Section Manager Sets Field Day Tour Plan

Field Day has arrived!

Hi everyone. I hope everyone has a moment to read this. As I had mentioned earlier, my plan for Field Day is an aggressive tour of WMA and to visit as many, if not all the public sites in action during that time.

The likely one will be NoBARC as it will be the farthest. I may be there during setup. I plan on leaving from the other end of the section very early. Southwick, Hampden, Springfield, Franklin will follow to wrap up the Western part of the state.

Sunday morning, I will start the day at WECT in Worcester where I will be taking traffic from the Western Mass 80 meter net at 8:30 am. Then to CMARA, Mohawk and Montachusett. There are no set times, and the order may change. Let’s see how I do!

If you are having a field day drop me an email and I will try to get it in there as well. I know of a couple of others and I am seeking to get the club events the priority as a lot of hard work goes into those.

I hope to see you all out there Sat. and Sun.

73,
Ray KB1LRL

Wild Thing Trail Race

Knut Finnevolden N1ATP is looking for multiple ham radio operators to help support the Wild Thing 5k and 10k Trail Race.

The race is at the Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, 472 West Mountain Rd, Lenox, MA 01240. The event will be on Sunday June 24 from 8 to noon. Keep in mind that this is Field Day weekend, don’t double book yourself!

Most assignments will be off-road throughout the wildlife sacutuary trails. The topography of the area means that most assignments will require using at least an HT with high gain antenna, if not a portable base/mobile setup.

Ham radio volunteers can register on www.EventComm.org. Other details of the race are available on the race’s website. Any other questions can be directed to Knut N1ATP.

Boxboro Hamfest Call for Speakers

Don’t just attend Boxboro 2018—BE A PART OF IT!

The Boxboro Committee seeks fresh and exciting presentations for this year’s ARRL New England Division Convention, September 7-9, 2018. We’re looking for talks of both a technical and non-technical nature. 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.

In addition to forums throughout the day Saturday, we will feature Saturday evening entertainment, workshops on Friday, and a half-day Sunday program.

If you represent a regional club or organization (e.g. YCCC, NEQRP, WRONE, MARS, etc.) we can help facilitate open forums or closed meetings by providing you a meeting space.

Groups who wish to set up information tables should get your requests in early. While the tables are offered without charge, we ask for some volunteer time in return to assist us with ticket sales and other logistics during the convention.

To register as a presenter, please go to http://boxboro.org/forums-and-classes or email us if you have additional questions.

We look forward to meeting all of you at the convention.

73,
Phil Temples, K9HI
Program Chair
Boxboro! ARRL New England Division Convention
k9hi@boxboro.org

Section Manager Report May 2018

Hello there! 2018 seems to be going by and leaving a vapor trail. It weird that it has been six months since I assumed the position as Section Manager. Through this time, I have received messages of a number of you expressing encouragement and appreciation for what I am doing and that is very much appreciated.

On June 1st as you remember was the day seven years ago we had an F3 tornado hit the Monson and Springfield area which cut a swath of destruction in it’s path. I ponder this thought in reflection to this event. Are we ready if it hits again? The help wanted sign is still out for a new SEC, but there is a deafening sound of crickets. My desire is to establish a formal emergency communication system that is a standard for all counties, and to start getting served agencies on board as a reliable and important resource ready to go if needed. I cannot accomplish this without a crew of willing volunteers to help establish this goal.

In May, along with the big move of my mother from Arizona to Mass. I was able to visit the WECT club meeting which demonstrated the dispatch console software they used for the marathon and was quite impressed with what that can do more multi-link and mode communication. I was impressed with the knowledge they had with UHF/VHF Motorola technologies. I also want to congratulate Gil Hayes WK1H as he is now the Official Observer Coordinator and the Affiliated Club Coordinator. These are a couple of important roles and I know Gil will do a great job.

June is also the month for our annual ritual called Field Day. This will be different for me as I will be out visiting sites and not setting up on Mount Wachusett. I encourage you to enter your field day in the ARRL website and email me where you will be so I can plan on getting there. My attempt is to visit as many as I can if not all sites. There are some sites way out there and I will be working on getting there early. I am looking forward to seeing how everyone else has theirs set up.

Along with Field Day locations, I also encourage all Assistant Section Managers to visit the sites as well. Please send a report as to your activity and any news regarding club activity and DEC and EC activities. ALL are encouraged to feed me with anything pertaining to the section so I know what’s going on. Those that currently do, thank you and keep it up! Reporting will be more essential as the organization develops.

That’s enough for now. Time to get off the soapbox. Hope to see you at Field Day!

73,
Ray KB1LRL

13 Colonies Special Event

Eastern MA ARRL Affiliated Club Coordinator Andy Stewart, KB1OIQ writes:

The annual 13 Colonies Special Event will take place from Sunday, July 1st, 9:00 AM Eastern (1300 UTC) until Saturday, July 7th, 12:00 Midnight Eastern (July 8th, 0400 UTC).

Participants are encouraged to contact as many of the original 13 Colonies as possible in that timeframe.  There are also two bonus stations: WM3PEN (Philadelphia, PA), and GB13COL (Durham, England).  A nice certificate is available at the end of the event.

Each colony has its own callsign and list of operators.  Massachusetts is K2H.  If you are a Massachusetts ham interested in being a K2H operator, contact Bob (K1KVV) at radioevents [at] semara [dot] org so he can put you on the official operators list.  One must hold a General Class license, or higher, and should plan to operate from their home station.

This is a fun event and I hope a lot of you will participate. For more information:  http://www.13colonies.net.