We’ve completed two public service events, and there are two more left for the club this summer. And there are plenty of other ones in the area. Most of the clubs in our area support a lot of the same events that we support, parades, charity walks and the like. If you’re interested in helping out you can usually find out more information by listening to their nets or checking their web sites. I’ve worked events for other clubs in the past and they’re always glad to receive help. Then there are the larger events, which typically don’t have a club affiliation. Around there there are several 100 mile bike rides, and the Chicago marathon. All of which are great events to be a part of. Please contact me if you’re interested in working one of these events and I can get you in touch with their coordinators.
As ham radio operators we have a unique skill set that makes us valuable to the people who organize events. There is the obvious fact that per FCC rules our services are free. But there is a lot more to it than that. We provide additional manpower that is already trained for the specific task of communicating. What’s interesting here is that our training to a degree comes in the form of formal courses such as ICS 100 and ICS 200, but it also is done informally on nearly every net that you check in to or round table discussion that you join on a repeater. As a community we have developed ways to effectively pass traffic, usually in the form of directed nets, and we use these skills on a weekly basis (if not more often). In a round table format we do things like insert a short pause between the end of one transmission and the beginning of the next. This allows another operator an easy way to join the conversation. In a large scale net such as the Chicago marathon, this same method allows for someone with extremely urgent traffic to be able to pass it in a very timely fashion.
In addition to our communications training, we also unburden the event organizers from needing to be proficient in using a radio to communicate. As we are always instructed at the beginning of our public service events, and as the ICS courses teach, we are there for communications only and we are not there to work the situation. In practice what this means is that we listen to our radios and pull out traffic that is specific to our assignment, and then pass it along to the person or team that we are working with. This filtering of information removes a significant task from those actually working a situation. It also works in reverse, when an event official needs to send traffic over the radio they can hand the information off to us to handle the details of sending the traffic and getting a response, freeing up their time to continue working the event.
Public service events can be very rewarding. I encourage everyone to take the radio skills that you already have and try applying them to one of these events.
Frank Giampa N9QPD Chairman opened the meeting at 7:00 PM.
Chris Brewer AC9GN reports: beginning balance $4,443.32. Income was $149.27. Expense was $50.35 for Data Line. Ending balance $4,542.24. Paid membership is currently 77.
Matt AC9IG reports he will present his discussion at end of regular committee reports.
Bob Benwitz N9JAX: Observing some membership application difficulty where PayPal is easy to send payment but we’re not able to capture the necessary personal information for our Roster. Need to find a process to update our Membership submissions that arrive via PayPal. We will discuss some ideas to modify our website instructions to bridge this difficulty.
During April the following inquiries were responded to via phone and/or email:
4/3 Rob Ekl K9EKL
4/25 Jeremy Peeler K5CLG
4/30 Michael Griffiths KD9KMV
Question: Michael Griffiths stated that while he was able to pay dues via PayPal to join as a new member, there were no entry fields to send across his information – Is this true?
Kent W9KAO reports an input attenuator failure on the tank-mounted UHF amplifier. Dennis KD9HIK will visit Hamvention in May and purchase a 50W attenuator ($200 headroom for expenditure and double the power-handling needed).
Cliff Sowka K9QD: Approval of Meeting Minutes as published in the RHG.
The Board will appoint a substitute recording secretary for the May meeting as I will be out of town that evening.
Bob Langsfeld WB9TZC not present.
Dennis Calvey KD9HIK Drafted a proposed press release:
The Schaumburg Amateur Radio Club (SARC) announces the resumption of the “SARC in the Park” tradition on Saturday May 12th from 08:00 AM until noon. Weather permitting, its members meet on the front lawn of the Schaumburg Community Recreation Center (Bode and Springinsguth) the second Saturday of the month (except Saturday June 23rd, Field Day when SARC will be operating from 1330 N Plum Grove Rd).
Its members, licensed Amateur Radio operators, bring their portable radios, “go-boxes”, antennas and batteries outside and operate away from home. This activity tests the ability to be able to operate under non-ideal conditions, such as during an emergency deployment. Clever methods of stringing up antennas are tested. Portable “go-boxes”, containing equipment for rapid deployment and operation of a radio station always draw a lot of comments.
Please stop by to check it out. If conditions allow you might see an operator contacting another amateur radio station hundreds of miles away using the same amount of power as typical night light. Licensed control operators can even allow you to talk using their radios.
The Schaumburg Amateur Radio Club is part of a growing international community of “Hams” that explore technology for wireless communication across the globe, through satellites, the International Space Station and even bounce signals off the moon or meteor trails. SARC provides communication support at public events, during emergency deployments, free of charge training classes for persons interested in becoming a licensed operator as well as a wide range of activities related to the hobby. For more information, please visit our web site at n9rjv.org.
Construction Project (CP)
Gary Bernstein N9VU has resigned the Board as well as his eBay Sales and CP roles.
The Board thanks Gary N9VU for his contributions.
There are currently five members [Rob N9MVO, Russ KC9NUV, Leo N9NBH, Bill KD9JQM, Dave KD9JKG] already on the short list of potential supporters. Matt AC9IG will confirm a staffing plan before September CP resumption.
Robert Kocourek W9RKK will organize this year’s ‘Pilot Pete’s’ institutionalized club social event for sometime in September. We haven’t held this event at Pilot Pete’s for several years due to their current insistence on guaranteed attendance numbers. It’s been difficult for the restaurant to plan their facility’s seating/capacity so they’ve tightened their requirements. That loss of flexibility has precluded our desire to continue with them for the club’s social event.
Leo N9NBH reported plans for a winter General Class with the Library District are in place. September 8th through the end of October at the Hoffman Estates facility, same as last fall’s Technician class.
Dirk W9RI reports the next Test session is set for this coming Saturday.
Mike K9KQX not present. Matt will add a feature-set to our new website to allow extemporaneous article submissions with reasonable editing capability
Rob N9MVO not present but provided recent communication:
This is a last call for volunteers for the MS Walk at the Schaumburg Baseball Stadium on Sunday, May 6th.
It’s a repeat of a recent message about the Walk with some revision, so it may seem somewhat familiar. The first Public Service Event of 2018 is upon us,
We have been asked to join again in support of the MS Walk, this year at the Schaumburg Baseball stadium on Sunday May 6th. Our setup will begin at 7:30 AM. The participants start walking at 9:00 AM. In previous years, the event was completed before 11:00 AM. The route includes walking around the south parking lot of the baseball stadium and this year will include a three mile route that uses a road in a residential area north of 390 Tollway to nowhere. We will need a few people for communicating need of assistance for participants who have trouble making the whole route. There will be several others needed in the south parking lot to assist participants getting to the start.
We will likely be able to park near our operating locations, so it may not be necessary to do a lot of walking. A folding chair might be handy.
The maximum radio distance will be about a mile, so a 5W HT with a rubber duck antenna should be sufficient. However, because of the location of the tollway, and the fact that we will be dispersed on BOTH sides of the Tollway, an improved antenna is desirable. It may not be necessary.
If you haven’t worked a Public Service Event before, this will be a great way to learn what they are about – Serving the public.
If you have been on other PS Events, you know it will be enjoyable.
If you’ve got a new radio, get the SARC/EMCOMM frequencies programmed into it, so you can easily support this and other Public Service Events coming up this year. See the frequency list here:
People can Google “Walk MS: Schaumburg 2018” and click on the first link (or link that reads Walk MS: Schaumburg 2018). Thank you for your participation in this event.
Cliff Sowka K9QD: The May presentation will be Field Day preparations. I will be out of town that evening.
Steve AC9EM will now be hosting the Thursday Night Nets.
Gary N9VU has resigned his role; new leadership will be sought.
Matt AC9IG set limited website access for authorized members. Also arranged to have $87.60 hosting fee paid-ahead for the next 12 months.
Field Day Chair: Several committee leadership roles are crystalizing. May’s Regular Business Meeting discussion will be centered on FD plans. Volunteer staffing at the moment is Bob Zuttermeister W9GEW for GOTA, Robert W9RKK for Kocourek for SSB, and Frank Giampa N9QPD will make buttermilk pancakes Sunday dawn.
Site Permit application with the Village is undetermined at the moment. Rob N9MVO hasn’t updated process yet. Chris will be submitting Insurance Rider paperwork required by the Village.
Unauthorized Facebook site will be taken down once we find the controlling author who created this unused/dormant account.
Matt moved Leo seconded:
The only official social media or internet presence for the Schaumburg Amateur Radio club will be by way of the N9RJV website and through the SARC-all Reflector within Google Groups for current membership. Motion passed 6:1
There are two Official SARC logos: globe with lightning bolt and simplified SARC in green. Matt AC9IG will modernize the graphics and provide copy for membership.
Currently there are two official logos:
Submitted: May 3, 2018. Cliff Sowka K9QD Secretary.
The club supported the MS Walk fundraiser in Schaumburg on Sunday, May 5, 2018. There was a little rain before the event started but it quickly warmed up. Our members were the eyes on the course reporting back to the event organizers how the walk was progressing. We also relayed any requests for first aid or help from the course, but fourtanately we did not need to act on that.
Thank you to everyone who spent their morning at the walk!
Plenty of club members volunteered their communications skills to help relay information throughout the course for the Chicagoland Marathon. Sunday, May 20th started off with a good downpour that postoned the start of the race about 30 minutes. And things didn’t get any drier from there. We thank everyone who braved the elements for this event. The Schaumburg EMA coordinadator was very thankful for our comittment.
Our members were assigned to various locations including water stations throughout the course, the event command vehicle, “shadowing” event officials, and some even followed the race from on their bikes. Most of the information passed over the radio was regarding the progress of runners through the course which helped water station volunteers operate their stations effectively and provided race officials with eyes on the course which they would not have otherwise had from their fixed location at the command post.
Below you can see some of our members working the event.
Matt Walsh AC9IG President opened the meeting at 7:00 PM.
Chris Brewer AC9GN not reported a starting balance of $4443.32, an income of $149.27, expenses paide of $50.30 for the data line and an ending balance of $4542.24. 77 paid members were reported.
Matt AC9IG thanked those who participated in the MS walk and encouraged members to help with the upcoming public service events.
Will resume in September. SARC in the Park takes it’s place during the summer months.
Rob N9MVO thanked those involved with the MS walk. He reported that the weather cleared up quickly and that the MS walk management appreciated our tracking of the last gropu through the course.
Upcoming events: Hoffman Estates Fourth of July parade. Only an HT is necessary for this event. Our task is to make sure all of the units for the parade are where they belong before the parade start so we can get them out in order and have the parade go in an orderly fashion. We also report late or missing units.
RHG – Radio Hill Gazette
Matt AC9IG has temporarily taken over publishing duties. Articles can now be submitted through a link at the bottom of the web site and interesting discussions on SARC all may be reproduced as part of the RHG.
Kent W9KAO reports the UHF repeater was offline for a short while due to a failed attenuator. He has made a temporary repair and will be making a final repair after parts are purchased at Hamvention in Dayton.
John K9WIC reported details of the deployment for the Chicagoland Marathon on May 20th. Due to Hamvention in Dayton, the May EMCOMM meeting has been cancelled.
Robert W9RKK reported the details of three options for the SARC family Picnic. The membership voted for Lou Malnati’s (9). Fudruckers (4) and Chandlers (3) also being options. A motion was passed to provide the $50 refundable deposit. The picnic will take place at 5pm on September 8, 2018 at Lou Malnati’s, 1 South Roselle Road, Schaumburg.
Leo N9NBH reported we have a confirmed space at the Hoffman Estates Library for our general-level license class starting on September 8. Look for it to be published on the library’s web site and mailing in the coming months.
No testing team members present to report.
Next examination date: June 2, 2018
April and May’s programs will be a discussion of field day equipment and logistics.
Matt AC9IG reports there are a few more nets to check in to before the raffle drawing at Field Day dinner. Every check in gets you an additional entry in the raffle.
None to report.
None to report.
Adjourn 7:34 PM
Submitted: May 26th, 2018. Matt Walsh President on behalf of Cliff Sowka K9QD Secretary (not present).