Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for May, 2019.
‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.
It sounds like Jabberwocky, and it is, written by Lewis Carroll ca 1871. And I often wonder if that is how we sound to newcomers to our hobby. In fact, I am sure it is. I remember my entry to Novice-land and how little I understood about the ongoing discussions at radio club meetings. It took a while to pick up the slang, and a little while longer to actually begin to understand it. But thanks to a couple of mentors who were able to ease the pain, I got by. Were it not for these heroes of mine, I might have given up.
Mentoring was the key and Mentoring is the theme of the upcoming Dayton Hamvention and National ARRL Convention. We will all learn how we can be better mentors and assist interested newcomers into our hobby. We need to step away for a few moments from our own form of "inside conversation" and invite the new folks in to the conversation, remembering that they probably don't yet have a firm grasp of the nuances of ham lingo. Attending a few of the Hamvention Forums will certainly provide some guidelines for us all.
Remember, Hamvention and the ARRL National Convention are set for May 17, 18 & 19 at the Greene County Fairgrounds in Xenia, OH. Full details can be found at https://www.Hamvention.org.
Of special note, National and State ARRL conventions are authorized to host meetings of the Royal Order of the Wouff Hong (ROWH). This is a fun event, convening at 9:00 PM Saturday May 18 at the University of Dayton Marriott, 1414 S. Patterson Blvd. in Dayton. As the history is chronicled, "The Old Man", Hiram Percy Maxim W1AW, wrote in 1919 the Wouff Hong was conceived as an instrument of potential punishment for wayward hams, those who strayed from good operating etiquette. The actual Wouff Hong currently hangs in a place of honor in the office of the Secretary of the ARRL. This meeting provides the opportunity for those who do not yet belong to the "ROWH" to join and share in its ideals. This is always a fun event with a rather unique lesson in League history attached. You can register in advance at http://arrl-ohio.org/wouff-hong.html. A certificate of membership and special memento will be provided to all inductees.
TOM'S COMMENTS: Looking at many of the club newsletters that come my way, I can see that Spring is here just by all the listings of ham radio classes. Good job, everyone! It’s so important for ham radio to keep offering these opportunities. And it’s great to be able to share such a fun hobby.
The challenge for us all is follow-up. It’s great to have someone get their first license. Who helps them get on the air? Who will show them how to make the first contact? Who will advise them on antennas?
Whatever you do, it has to be tailored to circumstances that fit the mentor and those who wish to learn. Some clubs go all-out to organize activities for new hams. If your spring classes end in May or early June, make sure your newly licensed people get an invitation to Field Day. In fact, don’t just invite—make it as easy as possible for them to get there, and stress how important it is for them to get on the air. Offer them a step-by-step tour so they understand which antenna does what, and how all the equipment works together.
If you’re going to the Hamvention in a few weeks, remember that the theme this year is “Mentoring the Next Generation.” The ARRL website indicates: “A track of presentations will be organized to build on the convention theme, encouraging more individuals and radio clubs to serve in mentoring roles, leading new and inexperienced radio amateurs to become more active, involved, and engaged.”
Whether or not you can get to Hamvention, please do your part at home, and find a new ham to help –whether it’s just encouragement on the air, or sharing some knowledge that you would like to pass along.
--73, Tom W8WTD Vice Director, Great Lakes Division
HAMFESTING: Here is the current Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest Schedule covering the next few months. These swaps have received their sanctioning approval from ARRL HQ at the time of this publication.
If you plan to request ARRL Sanctioning, please be sure to do it well in advance of your Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. With 52 weeks and 70+ hamfests, things do double up a little.
Plan ahead for requesting your ARRL Officials to attend.
5/4/19 Cadillac Cadillac, MI
5/5/18 Flying Beers Trunkswap Ferndale, MI
5/17 to 19 Hamvention Xenia, OH
6/1/19 Luce County Newberry, MI
6/1/19 Princeton Princeton, KY
6/1/19 IRA Hudsonville, MI
6/1/19 Fulton County Wauseon, OH
6/2/19 Chelsea Chelsea, Mi
6/8/19 Union County Marysville, OH
6/15/19 Milford/SWODXA Conv Milford, OH
6/15/19 Midland Hamfest Midland, MI
6/16/19 Monroe Monroe, MI
OUR GREAT LAKES DIVISION web page does carry news from some of the recent events in the Division, useful links and information as well as some neat photos supplied from around the Division. Check it out:
Be sure to check your Section's news pages for the latest local happenings, club and net information.
73, Let's go light up the bands!
Dale Williams WA8EFK
Great Lakes Division