Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Dale's Tales for June 2017

Greetings everyone, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for June 2017.

THIS YEAR, 2017 is the "Year of the YL", a time to acknowledge the service of the Young Ladies
across the globe that are licensed radio amateurs.  In the Great Lakes Division, we recognize the national YL group YLRL, the Young Ladies Radio League that has a strong following in Kentucky.  Founded in 1939, the YLRL is truly an international organization and includes many recognized members from across the globe.

As a matter of fact, our KY Section leadership team includes among its Public Information officers, Jeanean Hampton K5EIB the Commonwealth's Lt Governor.  Information about the YLRL, can be found at: www.ylrl.org.

Many Michigan YLs a hold membership in The Auto State Young Ladies (TASYLs).  TASYLs were organized in 1965 as a network specifically for YLs.  The aim of TASYLs is to promote fellowship and to share our mutual interest in Amateur Radio.  Their TATTLER Newsletter comes out through email four times a year and is the official publication of the organization.  It contains Amateur Radio and TASYL news and activities.

TASYL members meet in person 2 times a year: once in March for the annual meeting (currently at the Crossroads Hamfest in Kalamazoo) and another time in August for a potluck picnic/meeting.  OMs have been known to set up a field event at the site.  Members also meet on the TASYL Net each Thursday at 9:00 am (local time) on 3940.

Membership is open to all lady hams. Non-licensed YLs and OMs are invited to be associate members.  Membership dues are $5 per year.  A membership application form and additional information can be found on the TASYL website at www.tasyl.net or join us on August 26, 2017 at the old schoolhouse at 4960 Portland Rd., Saranac, MI, 48881 at 11:00 am for a potluck picnic.

Ohio YLs formed the Buckeye Belles as their YL organization.  The "Buckeye Burr" is a continuing publication for Ohio YLs, despite a setback in Belle membership.  Susie Scott N8CGM continues to produce the Buckeye Burr regularly and asks that any interested YL contact her if she would like to be included on the e-mail list:  N8CGM@ARRL.NET
Perhaps there is an opportunity to revitalize the Bells and get them back on a regular meeting schedule.

YLs have a lot to share with each other, as well as the OM ham population.  I really want to encourage our YLs to get involved with a local YL group.  Most gather on the air regularly and in person with their meetings often held at the larger hamfests.  It does not take a lot of time, but the camraderie is important and well worthwhile.  YLs, please consider belonging to your local YL group. 

HAMVENTION®: It really happened and congratulations go out to the Dayton Amateur Radio Association for the outstanding job.  I think we all looked at this year's event with a lot of apprehension but the 600 team players at DARA pulled it off very successfully.  The Greene County Fairgrounds proved a well-maintained facility, with new buildings and everyone associated with the event was friendly and welcoming.  Even the rain did not seem to dampen (I had to do it) anyone's spirits.   Thanks
DARA for another great Hamvention.

TOM'S COMMENTS:  Comments from our Vice Director Tom Delaney W8WTD

One of the key elements in getting and especially keeping new hams is training and involvement.  It has come up many times in the meetings of the Entry Level License committee.  It was a theme at Hamvention®, where it was mentioned by both Tom Gallagher, NY2RF, ARRL CEO, and Rick Roderick, K5UR, ARRL President.  If ham radio is to survive, we need to attract new members, and just as important, we need to help them get on the air.

With Field Day coming up, we have a great opportunity to do just that throughout the Division.  Clubs are already starting to make plans.  I'd like to encourage not just the planning of where to put antennas and how many stations to operate, but also plans to reach out to new hams and inactive ones.  It's great to have a big score and be the top in your class, but it might be more important, in the long run, to count how many hams participated at your local event, and how many new or inactive hams learned something and took a new interest in operating.

If your club has sponsored classes and exams in the past year, have you thought about personally inviting each of your graduates to Field Day?

And even if you haven't held classes, there are ways to search the databases and get the contact information for every ham in your area.

What would it take to drop an invitation in the mail?  How many less-active hams could you encourage to show up?

There are all sorts of ways to build interest.  Demonstrating the art of antenna building and placement will show newcomers that antenna work is not beyond them.  In fact, wire antennas work well, and can be constructed easily and designed for almost any property.  One group I know has even offered to teach soldering and basic connections during the Field Day prep time.

Don't overlook an important Field Day rule, designed specifically with newcomers in mind.  That is the Get On the Air (GOTA) station.  Look over that section carefully.  Your club can add to its total contacts by having such a station.  Even new techs qualify.  There are ways to use control operators and call sign arrangements that allow a GOTA station to participate fully in Field Day. 

You can also add a station without changing your class if that station is dedicated to 50 MHz and higher.  Should we happen to get a nice six-meter opening, you can rack up lots of contacts and points just by putting that sort of station in your operating plans.  It gives you an extra station to operate, so there won't be a shortage of stations for all those new operators you plan to get out there!

And youth count!  Your club can get bonus points for contacts made by young people under the age of 18.  There are lots of other bonus points available.  One in particular your club may wish to use is Social Media.

You could attract attention (see getting new hams involved, above) and get bonus points while doing it. In this case, reading the rules is less a matter of following regulations, and more of a matter of finding new ways operate at Field Day.  Use your imagination for what you can accomplish.  And have fun!

73, Tom W8WTD Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

GREAT LAKES HAMCON.  Many hams in the Midwest are already familiar with this fall's plan for the ARRL Great Lakes Division Convention.  October 7 & 8 will bring the new Great Lakes HamCon and our Convention to Michigan International Speedway (MIS) for the two-day event.  HamCon is sponsored by the Great Lakes Amateur Radio Assn, a consortium of 18 radio clubs, formally recognized by ARRL as a "Council of Clubs" and organized as a 501(c)3 non-profit.  A large flea market will be set up on "Pit Road" while vendors will be housed in permanent buildings on the infield.  Additional space will be provided as needed in large tents on the infield.  MIS is located in southern Michigan neat the village of Brooklyn, not far from Jackson.  A typical race day at the speedway accommodates more that 100,000 race fans, so parking and traffic control are well organized and managed by local officials.

This year will include a number of forums and meetings held in MIS conference rooms.  HamCon is pleased to welcome ARRL president Rick Roderick K5UR to cut the opening ribbon.   Forums confirmed to date include DX, Fox hunting - complete with a fox hunt, QRP Operating, Radio Propagation, Kit Building Techniques for Success, a One-Day Tech Class with FCC License Testing and the ARRL Members' Forum.  The Ohio Section will also host a special ceremony for new inductees into the Royal Order of the Wouff Hong.  We have several more forums planned and those will be announced over the next few weeks.

As we get closer to the fall, your Section Manager's bulletins will carry more complete information as well as what appears in Dale's Tales.

HamCon Tickets are now on sale along with camping reservations.  Check the web pages at http://glhamcon.org/.

HAMFESTING:  Here is the current Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest Schedule covering the next few weeks.  These swaps have received their sanctioning approval from ARRL HQ at the time of this publication.

We have approximately 65 ARRL hamfests each year in the Division.  I do encourage each Hamfest Chair to register early for ARRL Sanctioning.  Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. 

Jun  3 - IRA Hamfest - Hudsonville, MI
Jun  3 - Fulton County - Tedrow, OH
Jun  3 - Princeton Hamfest - Princeton, KY 
Jun  4 - Chelsea Hamfest - Chelsea, MI 
Jun 10 - Luce County - Newberry, MI 
Jun 10 - Union County - Marysville, OH 
Jun 17 - Milford Hamfest - Milford, OH 
Jun 18 - Monroe Hamfest - Monroe, MI 
Jun 24 & 25 - FIELD DAY 
Jul  8 - GARS Hamfest - Germantown, OH 
Jul  9 - 20/9 Tailgate - Austintown, OH 
Jul 16 - Van Wert Hamfest - Van Wert, OH 
Jul 22 - Harrison Hamfest - Harrison, MI 
Jul 22 - GMARC Tailgate - Shelby Twp, MI 
Jul 22 - Big Sandy Hamfest - Louisa, KY 
Jul 29 - CMARC Outdoor Hamfest - Lansing, MI 
Jul 30 - Portage Hamfest - Ravenna, OH

Be sure to check your Section's news pages for the latest local happenings, club and net information.

73, Let's be radio-active!

Dale Williams WA8EFK

Great Lakes Division