Thursday, July 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for July

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for July, 2021.

For the most part we seem to be getting past the serious Covid-19 issues and some state close to normal is returning to the Great Lakes Division.

The personal losses have been severe and our thoughts go out to all who suffered so dearly over these past 18 months. As I briefly mentioned last month, our hamfest/swap scene has returned and now I can add: "with a vengeance." Swap attendance at a few recent events appeared to be noticeably higher than pre-Covid levels. We know some of our major vendors have been impacted by the recent shut-downs, and we all hope that we'll see them back on the hamfest circuit vary soon.

Field Day offered the opportunity to again team up either at a single site, or collaborate scores from different locations. In either case, on-the-air activity seemed enthusiastic and close to normal from what this operator could hear. And we are all can be thankful for that. In a few weeks we'll see how our FD scores compared with previous years, but regardless of scores, it seemed like attitudes were great and everyone was genuinely up-beat and having a great time. Some locations were faced with significant rainfall, some with winds and others endured the heat. My local club faced a windstorm which destroyed a tent (but not the CW operator), but returned to the air shortly, loosing little time in getting back into the fray. We did get reports of significant rainfall at other FD sites, further adding to the adventures of being prepared for operating in the field.

Our ARRL Board of Directors meets in Mid-July with a rather full agenda.

Under consideration is the addition of a new Standing Committee, specifically to assist and grow our Field Organization and the strong interest in the Amateur Radio Emergency Service, The National Traffic System, Government Liaisons, Public Relations, Technical Advisors, and working with ARRL Affiliated Radio Clubs. This will allow specific focus on these areas, with needed support. It will lessen the load on the Programs and Services Committee, allowing them to concentrate on several specific areas which include the DXCC program, LoTW and contesting.

SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.

Happy 4th of July and Happy Birthday to America!

I don’t know about you, but I’m still recovering from last weekend’s Field Day. I took to the road and visited with as many Field Day sites as I could get to. This year I headed south and got to 9 sites. I do apologize if I missed your Field Day operations, maybe next year I can get there. According to the ARRL Field Day Locator we had 88 sites operational within the Division this year, and I’m sure that there were many more but just didn’t list themselves.

Things continue to be really busy here with attending club meetings and work on the committees that I’m on. Our Field Service Working Group is meeting regularly with the new Field Services Manager and the CEO to implement improvements within the field organization. We have already started to see changes happening. One of those changes was the CEO holding a townhall forum with all of the Section Managers. We have a lot of work ahead, with more changes and improvements yet to come on the horizon.

The PR Committee has chosen what we feel is a really great nominee for the Philip J. McGan Memorial Silver Antenna Award and sent our recommendation on to the Programs and Services Committee for their approval. Once approved by them, then it’s off to the full Board of Directors for final approval at the July meeting. Our PR Committee also put together a lot of information to help all of you promote this year’s Field Day. I hope your PIO’s took advantage of that material.

Work on the Great Lakes Division Convention has really taken off. We’ve already had several Zoom planning meetings and are now working to get a really great lineup of forum speakers. We already have several locked in and I know that you definitely won’t want to miss hearing from them! The great folks of Bowling Green Kentucky are going to host the 10th Annual Vette City Hamfest / ARRL Great Lakes Division Convention on October 2nd! As that it is only 3 months away, you’ll want to make sure that this event gets on your calendars now. We want everyone in the Great Lakes Division to come out and have a blast with us.

Yes, the Joseph Phillips, K8QOE, Newsletter Award is still on. For those of you in Kentucky and Michigan please get your newsletters turned in to your Section Manager and Public Information Coordinator quickly.

The best newsletter from each of the 3 Sections (Michigan, Kentucky and Ohio) will be chosen by their respective Section Leaderships to compete for this very prestigious award.

We want every club in the Great Lakes Division to be able to participate for this award. So, if you are producing a newsletter, be sure to send a copy of it to your Section Manager. He’ll take it from there.

That is going to do it from here this month. So, “GOTA” and have FUN!!!

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

HAMFESTING: You will note that hamfests have begun to "scrunch" together and several are sharing the same date. These date conflicts are inevitable for many reasons. The most obvious is that there are 52 weekends a year and we have over 80 swaps annually in the Great Lakes Division. Take time out for holidays and the limitations become obvious. This year, of course has several hamfests that have been shifted to dates later in the year.

As each ARRL Affiliated radio club is independent, they each have the right to choose their hamfest date. I am sure they all do their part to insure date conflicts are minimized. Each club likewise deserves to have its hamfest sanctioned by ARRL to insure mutual support for these important activities. Your ARRL staff and I do our best to discuss these conflicts with the sponsors in an effort to avoid them, but activities often fall on dates that can't be altered because of long term commitments. The best we can do is encourage careful scheduling on the part of sponsors to insure dates are clear, thus offering the best opportunities for successful hamfests.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements. Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3 month lead time. If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ.

2021 Great Lakes Div. ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

07/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH

07/10/2021 - Cave City Hamfest - Cave City, KY

07/17/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

07/17/2021 - NOARS Fest, Elyria, OH

07/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH

07/25/2021 - St. Joseph Co ARC Swap, Centreville, MI

08/07/2021 - Columbus Hamfest, Columbus, OH

08/07/2021 - MOVARC Hamfest, Bidwell, OH

08/21/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

08/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest/Ohio Conference, Cincinnati, OH

08/29/2021 - Seaway Trunk Swap, Port Huron, MI

09/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY

09/11/2021 - GRAHamfest, Grand Rapids, MI

09/12/2021 - Findlay Hamfest, Findlay, OH

09/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI

09/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY

09/18/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

09/18/2021 - CMARC Hamfest, Okemos, MI

09/18/2021 - Mound ARA Swapmeet, Miamisburg, OH

09/18/2021 - Miami Co Swap Meet, Troy, OH

09/19/2021 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI

09/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH

10/02/2021 - VetteCity/Great Lakes Convention, Bowling Green, KY

10/16/2021 - Muskegon Color Tour Swap, Muskegon, MI

10/24/2021 - USECA Hamfest, Madison Hgts, MI

10/31/2021 - Massillon Swap, Massillon, OH

11/06/2021 - Grant ARC Hamfest, Georgetown, OH

12/04/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH

12/05/2021 - L'anse Creuse Swap, Madison Hgts, MI

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.


73, Stay safe, go buy new ham radio stuff.

Light up those bands!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director - Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for June

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for June, 2021.

It surely is nice to see our hamfest schedule growing and some actual swaps happening. We all are well aware that many of our clubs have faced very difficult decisions in determining if their plans for a hamfest needed to be scrubbed. The rapidly changing health environment, changing rules and guidelines both from the federal and state level, combined with rules from various venues all forced postponements and cancellations.

At this writing, guidelines have reached a reasonable level in most areas and now with careful planning and cooperation, the doors and gates are opening. We have juggled a few plans and rearranged our ARRL Convention Schedule to make accommodations as best we can. I took the liberty to put everything on the table. We normally plan conventions in alternate years, with individual State Conventions (3) in one year, and our Division Convention the next. A lot of planning and commitment goes into these events, each is unique and each puts a heavy load on the sponsoring group so alternating the convention types has really worked well. We all are eager to get back in the swing of meeting our fellow hams in person, so we'll hold Division Conventions both this year and 2022. We'll put a couple of State Conferences (like mini-conventions) on the calendar this year and next then return to our regular alternating schedule in 2023.

Truly, the Division Conventions always get the largest attendance as they cover all three Sections in our Division, Kentucky, Ohio and Michigan, and because of that, we also are fortunate to receive extra support from ARRL HQ, typically in the form of guest attendees and speakers from the HQ staff. Make your plans to attend these as special forums, net meetings and training sessions are always of interest. We are all going to do our best to bring the latest in up-to-date presentations to the ARRL Great Lakes Division. A banquet, guest speakers and Special Awards are always an integral part of these affairs, times when we can honor our fellow hams for their outstanding efforts in assisting their communities and ham radio itself.

Announcements containing the details of each convention will follow over the next few weeks as each forum gets confirmed. See "Scott's Stuff" below for the first announcement.


SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.

This past month has been really crazy around here as a lot of hard work is continuing on the committees that I’m on. The Field Organization group is one of them and in the past couple of months we put out a questionnaire to all of the Section Managers in the country. We asked them to tell us what was the most important issue that they would like to see improved (or problem resolved) that would be most beneficial to them as Section Managers to perform their jobs? We received a lot of really valuable and great comments and we are now working on getting those concerns resolved.

The PR Committee that I’m also on is going through the list of candidates to nominate the next Philip J. McGan Memorial Silver Antenna Award recipient. Because of the pandemic last year, no one was chosen, but that’s not true this year. We have several really good candidates to choose from. Once we choose our candidate, that person’s name will then be submitted to the full Board of Directors when we meet in July for their consideration and approval. Our PR Committee has also been busy putting together a lot of information that all of the PIOs and PICs have already received to help them promote this year's Field Day. Don’t forget, Field Day is June 26 -27.

If you haven’t heard, we are going to have a Great Lakes Division Convention after all! Yes, the great folks of Bowling Green Kentucky are going to host the 10th Annual Vette City Hamfest / ARRL Great Lakes Division Convention on October 2nd! As that it is only 4 months away, planning is spinning up fast, so get this on your calendars now. We want everyone in the Great Lakes Division to come out and have a blast with us.

Yes, the Joseph Phillips, K8QOE, Newsletter Award is still on. For those of you in Kentucky and Michigan please get your newsletters turned in to your Section Manager and Public Information Coordinator quickly. The best newsletter from each of the 3 Sections (Michigan, Kentucky and Ohio) will be chosen by their respective Section Leaderships to compete for this very prestigious award.

We want every club in the Great Lakes Division to be able to participate for this award. So, if you are producing a newsletter, be sure to send a copy of it to your Section Manager. He’ll take it from there.

That is going to do it from here this month. So, “GOTA” and have FUN!!!


--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division


HAMFESTING: Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements. Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings.

QST announcements require a 3 month lead time. If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ.

2021 Great Lakes Div. ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

06/05/2021 - Fulton County, Wauseon, OH

06/05/2021 - IRA Hamfest, Hudsonville, MI

06/06/2021 - Chelsea Hamfest, Chelsea, MI

06/12/2021 - Luce Co Yooper Hamfest, Newberry, MI

06/19/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

06/20/2021 - Monroe Hamfest, Monroe, MI

07/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH

07/10/2021 - Cave City Hamfest - Cave City, KY

07/17/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

07/17/2021 - NOARS Fest, Elyria, OH

07/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH

08/07/2021 - Columbus Hamfest, Columbus, OH

08/21/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

08/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest/Ohio Conference, Cincinnati, OH

09/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY

09/11/2021 - GRAHamfest, Grand Rapids, MI

09/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI

09/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY

09/18/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

09/18/2021 - CMARC Hamfest, Okemos, MI

09/18/2021 - Mound ARA Swapmeet, Miamisburg, OH

09/19/2021 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI

09/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH

10/02/2021 - VetteCity/Great Lakes Convention, Bowling Green, KY

10/16/2021 - Muskegon Color Tour Swap, Muskegon, MI

10/24/2021 - USECA Hamfest, Madison Hgts, MI

10/31/2021 - Massillon Swap, Massillon, OH

12/04/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH

12/05/2021 - L'anse Creuse Swap, Madison Hgts, MI

We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts. Many swap dates have changed from the regular hamfest calendar and as hard as we all work to avoid it, there are now several hamfests which fall on the same weekends.

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.


73, Stay safe.

Light up those bands!


Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for May 2021

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for May, 2021.

RF EXPOSURE. There have been a lot of questions regarding the FCC decision to eliminate the exemption Amateur Radio has enjoyed for many years related to RF exposure. ARRL has drafted a series of Questions and answers to address our mutual concerns. You will find information
posted on our Great Lakes Division web page along with a simple calculator that can be used to determine if your station is in compliance with the long standing regulations.

http://www.arrl-greatlakes.org/rf_exposure.html Updates will appear on the Web Page as we anticipate further clarifications from the FCC.

A REMINDER ABOUT THIS YEAR'S DAYTON HAMVENTION: From Michael Kalter, W8CI AND the Dayton Amateur Radio Assn. "With no in-person Hamvention this year, due to continuing Corona virus restrictions, we have been developing several activities to keep Hams busy and engaged in the hobby. We have a two day prize total of $15,000." Hamvention will be "Virtual" this year.

On Thursday May 20, 2021 the Virtual Contest University will be held starting at 9 AM EDT 1300Z. This will be a free event! Friday May 21 Starting at 11 AM EDT 1500Z the 2021 Virtual Hamvention Forums begin.

Saturday May 22 you may participate in the Hamvention QSO Party 8 AM to 8 PM EDST (1200 May 22 to 0000 May 23 UTC) W8BI, the club call of the Dayton Amateur Radio Association, will be a bonus station scored at 10 points per band and mode. To stay up with details, check https://hamvention.org/

ARRL GREAT LAKES CONVENTION: With sincere regrets, it was announced that due to the complications of Covid-19 and the resulting unknowns related to venue planning, the decision has been made to cancel the scheduled DX Engineering Hamfest and the associated Great Lakes Division Convention planned for the weekend of August 7.

ARRL HQ JOB OPENINGS: I might be remiss if I did not mention this, but there are several job postings for ARRL Headquarters staff and these are real opportunities for those who might be interested in serving the ham radio community. http://www.arrl.org/employment-opportunities

SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.
Normally by this time in the season I’m usually scrambling around getting things ready for another great Dayton Hamvention, but unfortunately, it’s not to be this year.

I’ve been working really hard on a couple of projects that are showing some great results. The Field Organization Working Group that I’m on has put out a questionnaire that we sent to all 71 of the Section Managers asking what they feel is needed to do their job better. We’ve had some very interesting responses and are reviewing and working on finding solutions to those responses.

The PR Committee that I’m also on is conducting some Zoom presentations for PIC’s and PIO’s all over the country to help teach them “best practices” for contacting and communicating with the media about Amateur Radio with a special emphasis being placed on Field Day.

I have a special announcement for all the clubs in the Great Lakes Division. We will be recognizing the “Best” newsletter in the Division. Just to remind all of you about how the newsletters are judged, here are the rules. You can also find these and all the awards possible to be presented posted on the Great Lakes Division website < http://arrl-greatlakes.org/awards_criteria.html >

JOSEPH J. PHILLIPS, K8QOE, NEWSLETTER AWARD
This award will be given to the highest scoring newsletter submitted in Great Lakes Division competition to the newsletter review committee.

Each newsletter for the contest will have been declared newsletter-of-the-year for the Section it represents during the present year; however, when the timing of the Division Convention occurs too early in the year to permit selection of a newsletter for the year, winners for the previous year may be submitted.

An eligible newsletter must be regularly published at least four (4) times per year and be a recognized Amateur Radio organization within their state.

Electronic (or Web based) produced newsletters may also enter. However, they must represent their printed newsletter in all formats. This is to ensure uniformity.

Non-amateurs, in the Public Relations industry will do the judging.

They will judge on following criteria:

Style (15%): This means newsletter design of all pages.

Content (35%): This is the amount of useful information contained within the newsletter.

Service to members (35%): This is the amount of information using individual member’s names.

Clarity of presentation (15%): This is the readability of the newsletter including accuracy of spelling and grammar.

*********************************

The best newsletter from each of the 3 Sections (Michigan, Kentucky and Ohio) have been chosen by their respective Section Leaderships to compete for this very prestigious award.

We want every club in the Great Lakes Division to be able to participate. So, if you are producing a newsletter, be sure to send a copy of it to your Section Manager. He’ll take it from there.

That is going to do it from here this month. So, “GOTA” and have FUN!!!

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

HAMFESTING: Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts. Many swap dates have changed from the regular hamfest calendar and as hard as we all work to avoid it, there are now several hamfests which fall on the same weekends.

The numbers are growing, as more clubs are making their best efforts to return their hamfests to the calendar. It should also be noted that there may be some hamfests that have not applied to be ARRL Sanctioned.

As we have no way to accurately track that activity, we only list those that have been approved as ARRL Hamfests.

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.

2021 Great Lakes Div. ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

05/15/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI
05/20-22/2021 - Dayton Hamvention Virtual Sessions on-line
06/5/2021 - Fulton County, Wauseon, OH
06/5/2021 - IRA Hamfest, Hudsonville, MI
06/6/2021 - Chelsea Hamfest, Chelsea, MI
06/12/2021 - Luce Co Yooper Hamfest, Newberry, MI
06/19/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI
06/20/2021 - Monroe Hamfest, Monroe, MI
07/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH
07/10/2021 - Cave City Hamfest - Cave City, KY
07/17/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI
07/17/2021 - NOARS Fest, Elyria, OH
07/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH
08/7/2021 - Columbus Hamfest, Columbus, OH
08/14/2021 - Central Kentucky Hamfest, Lexington, KY
08/21/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI
08/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest, Cincinnati, OH
09/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY
09/11/2021 - GRAHamfest, Grand Rapids, MI
09/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI
09/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY
09/18/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI
09/18/2021 - CMARC Hamfest, Okemos, MI
09/19/2021 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI
09/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH
10/25/2021 - USECA Hamfest, Madison Hgts, MI
12/4/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH
12/5/2021 - L'anse Creuse Swap, Madison Hgts, MI

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ.

73, Stay safe.

Light up those bands!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director - Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for April 2021

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for April, 2021.

DAYTON HAMVENION: Michael Kalter, W8CI from the Dayton Amateur Radio Assn. reports on the forthcoming special Hamvention Weekend Activities reported via the Portage County Amateur Radio Service's RADIOGRAM.

"That magical weekend in May approaching.

"With no Hamvention this year, due to continuing Corona virus restrictions, we have been developing several activities to keep Hams busy and engaged in the hobby. We have a two day prize total of $15,000.

"On Thursday May 20, 2021 the Virtual Contest University will be held starting at 9 AM EDT 1300Z. The course outline will be available soon.

This will be a free event! Even if you are not a contester you will learn so much about Amateur Radio and hear the techniques and critiques of many of the world’s foremost Hams. Hamvention is a proud sponsor along with Icom and DX Engineering. Plan on attending this amazing free event! Several Icom radios will be given away during the all-day event.

You must be registered on Zoom and present online at the time of the drawing to win the radios. Please check http://contestuniversity.com for updates.

"On Friday May 21Starting at 11 AM EDT 1500Z we will have the 2021 Virtual Hamvention Forums. The Hamvention Virtual Forums celebrates the

2021 Hamvention Award winners. Each awardee will give a 45 minute presentation followed by Q&A. The Hamvention Forums will be presented via Zoom Webinar. Registration for the Zoom Webinar will start 30 days before the event –look for the registration information on the Hamvention Website. Several Icom radios will be given away during the

2021 Hamvention Forums. The winners will be selected at random. The winner must have registered on Zoom for Hamvention Forums and be present during the drawing to win. Drawing times are random throughout the Virtual Forums event. Thanks to Hamvention, Icom and DX Engineering for their support of the 2021 Hamvention Virtual Forums.

"Our presenters are: Technical Achievement: WX6SWW –Tamitha Mulligan Skov is well known as the “Space Weather Woman”. Folks that have seen her space weather forecasting show will freely admit that she is full of energy and excited about her work. She is a real space pioneer.

"Special Achievement: W3WL –Wesley Lamboley was nominated by his peers for his lifetime, high energy support for the science and art of amateur radio. Not only has Wesley supported youth coaching, membership recruiting and technical problem assistance, he always does it with a smile and great humor.

"Amateur of the Year: WP3R –Angel M. Vazquez is known for being one of the principal support engineers for what was one of the greatest antennas in the world –the National Science Foundation’s Arecibo parabolic dish antenna. Angel’s award stems from his unswerving and diligent support of amateur radio throughout the entire territory of Puerto Rico and extends worldwide.

"Club of the Year: K4HTA --The Vienna Wireless society was chosen this year for its 58 years of service to the amateur radio community. K4HTA, with its 280 members, focus on youth education, public service and promoting the overall growth of radio through the DC area and around the world.

"On Saturday May 22, Participate in the Hamvention QSO Party 8 AM to 8 PM EDST(1200 May 22 to 0000 May 23 UTC). W8BI, the club call of the Dayton Amateur Radio Association, will be a bonus station scored at 10 points per band and mode. Bands: 10M, 15M, 20M, 40M, 80M. Typical call will be: CQ CQ HVQP (Hamvention QSO Party) W8XX (Your call). Typical exchange will be signal report and first year you attended Hamvention; eg on CW: KB8XXX 599 1998 W4XX. If you have never attended Hamvention, please send 2021 in place of the year. Send your score (number of QSOs including bonus points) to 3830scores.com within 5 days of the event.

You will be able to print a certificate after the contest."
- Michael Kalter W8CI, Hamvention Executive Committee, Dayton Amateur Radio Association.

Thanks Michael, we are glad that we can report that the Hamvention is continuing to innovate and develop new methods of keeping our interests high.

LOGBOOK OF THE WORLD: ARRL Plans an extensive upgrade to LoTW. As one of ARRL's most used benefits, LoTW has grown well beyond early expectations and HQ has now implemented a project to move it to a new level. This project is taking a good look at how LoTW is hosted, what innovations are needed, what additional awards can be supported and a host of other needs. As there is an expanding list of desired features, the project committee anticipates several months of effort to whittle the list to size and firm up the project scope.

KEEP THE DATE: The plans are approved for a GREAT LAKES DIVISION ARRL CONVENTION this year. DX Engineering will be hosting the event at their facility in Tallmadge, OH on August 7 in conjunction with their DXE Hamfest. Plans for special meetings and forums will be announced as soon as those events are confirmed.

SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.

Wow, another month has gone by so fast I can hardly believe it is April already, welcome to spring! I am still locked into Zoom meetings for the committees that I am on and it has been fascinating for sure. One item that our Public Relations Committee has been working hard on is the 2021 World Amateur Radio day. Here is the link where you can get all of the information about this wonderful event http://www.arrl.org/world-amateur-radio-day.

By now I hope that everyone has heard that the $35 fee that the F.C.C. will eventually start charging will NOT happen on April 19th as was reported on a number of social media sites recently. It is expected to happen sometime later in the summer.

Are you seeing that Hamfests are starting back up again? Yes, the list of hamfests is growing very rapidly, so please take note of the new listings at the bottom of this newsletter. Dale does an excellent job of keeping this list updated.

I am very glad to see that in-person meetings are also starting to come back. I have already been to several club meetings this past month and I will be at my first Trunk-fest of the year over in Massillon Ohio come April 17th. Hopefully, we will get back to some sort of normal very soon.

Speaking of hamfests, are you ready for the DX Engineering / Great Lakes Division Convention coming August 7th? I know that the convention is 4 months away yet, but that will go by quickly. So, with that said I want you to be sure to get this event marked on your calendars now! That way you will have plenty of time to get the lawn mowed, bushes trimmed, the garage cleaned up and all of those “honey do’s” taken care of long before August 7th gets here.

Field Day is fast approaching (June 26/27). Is your club making plans to have Field Day this year? If they are, do not let them forget to get signed up on the Field Day locator http://www.arrl.org/field-day-locator . I have heard from several of the bigger clubs around, and it sounds like they are going to try to get back out into the field. Hey, if you can, meet with your local government officials and ask them for a Proclamation for Amateur Radio that weekend. Most local governments will be happy to do this and do not forget to invite the news media to be there as well. Great PR for everyone, and you get extra points for your efforts too!

That is going to do it from here. I do want to mention that am doing a lot of bicycle mobile lately. I would love to have a QSO with you. I am on DMR Talk Group 3139 most of the time. So, “GOTA” and have FUN!!!

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

HAMFESTING: Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

The numbers are growing, as more clubs are making their best efforts to return their hamfests to the calendar. It should also be noted that there may be some hamfests that have not applied to be ARRL Sanctioned.

As we have no way to accurately track that activity, we only list those that have been approved as ARRL Hamfests.

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.

2021 Great Lakes Div. ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

5/15/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

5/20-22/2021 - Dayton Hamvention Virtual Sessions on-line

6/5/2021 - Fulton County, Wauseon, OH

6/5/2021 - IRA Hamfest, Hudsonville, MI

6/6/2021 - Chelsea Hamfest, Chelsea, MI

6/12/2021 - Luce Co Yooper Hamfest, Newberry, MI

6/19/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

6/20/2021 - Monroe Hamfest, Monroe, MI

7/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH

7/10/2021 - Cave City Hamfest - Cave City, KY

7/17/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

7/17/2021 - NOARS Fest, Elyria, OH

7/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH

8/7/2021 - DX Engineering Hamfest & Great Lakes Div Convention, Tallmadge, OH

8/21/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

8/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest, Cincinnati, OH

9/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY

9/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI

9/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY

9/18/2021 - GMARC Trunkfest, Shelby Twp, MI

9/19/2021 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI

9/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH

10/25/2021 - USECA Hamfest, Madison Hgts, MI

12/4/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH

12/5/2021 - L'anse Creuse Swap, Madison Hgts, MI

If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ. We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts. Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.


73, Stay safe.

Light up those bands!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Monday, March 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for March 2021

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for March, 2021.

SPECIAL ADVANCE ANNOUNCEMENT: The plans are approved for a GREAT LAKES DIVISION ARRL CONVENTION this year. DX Engineering will be hosting the event at their facility in Tallmadge, OH on August 7 in conjunction with their DXE Hamfest. Plans for special meetings and forums will be announced as soon as those events are confirmed. Save the date!

SCHOOL ROUNDUP: The recent School Club Roundup looked like a real roundup for school clubs in the Great Lakes Division.

In the Middle/Intermediate/JR High contest category, the winner was K8LPS, the Columbiana Clippers Amateur Radio Club in Ohio. In the Sr. High category, the Dixie Heights HS in Kentucky, K4YDH brought home third place and the College/University category, and W8EDU from Case Western Reserve in Ohio, brought home the third-place position in that category. Our most sincere congratulations go out to all. It is really neat to see a renewal of activity in school and college clubs and so many heavy hitters in the Great Lakes Division.

CONTEST COMMITTEE: I am pleased to report to you that the Great Lakes Division's vacancy on the Contest Advisory Committee was recently filled by President Rick Roderick K5UR who appointed John Comella N8AA of Fairfield, OH to serve as our representative in handling contest-related matters.

APPOINTMENTS: Vice Director Scott Yonally N8SY and I received Board appointments on ARRL Standing Committees for the coming year. The Board re-elected me to the Executive Committee and I was appointed to serve on the HF Band Planning Committee. I will also be assisting with the newly created Investment Management Committee. Scott highlights his appointments in "Scott's Stuff" below. At times it does not seem like much but some of these committees meet weekly. Combining that with the many radio club Zoom meetings that each of us currently attend, the weeks do get rather busy. We all hope to be back very soon with regular in-person sessions.

SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.
Wow, February has been cold and miserable out, but I have been so busy with meetings that I have hardly had time to notice it much. As many of you have read in the Board Meeting Minutes, I was assigned as the Board Liaison to the Public Relations Committee. We have been busy with several new projects that you will be hearing more about in the coming months. I was also asked to be a part of a special working group that the CEO, David Minster has put together, it is the Field Organization Working Group. Our primary objective is to document “best practices” for the Field Organization, helping create new tools and ideas for Section Managers and their staff. We have already had several meetings and we have got some great ideas in the works. More on that as time goes on.

Ok, let’s switch gears... I had a dilly of a computer problem recently and if it were not for the fact that I have backups of all my files, I would be starting over, literally from scratch trying to recreate everything that is stored on my computer. This mess all started when I got a message from Microsoft that my Windows 10 had an update ready to install and it wanted me to reboot the computer to start the process. I discovered a while back ago that you never let Windows just update your computer automatically. You can lose everything without even knowing what happened that way. I got everything ready and I went ahead and rebooted the computer and that is when all the fun started. It stalled and rebooted a half dozen times and then finally the dreaded “BLUE” screen appeared. I tried several times to get the computer to reboot thinking it would clear itself, but to no avail.

Luckily most newer computers have a recovery system built into the hard drive just for these types of situations. Unfortunately to get this feature to work you usually need to wipe a large part of the “C”
drive clean. The “C” drive is also where your personal files are usually stored. This means that all your personal files are gone, permanently, unless you have backed them up somewhere else. Since I have all my files stored on a portable drive as well as in the clouds, I did not lose a thing. Oh, I did have to go back and re-install all my programs which is a pain, but that is just a minor pain compared to what life would be like without all my files.

Please, if you have a computer and what you have stored on it is important to you, make sure that you do backups on a regular basis.

Portable hard drives are very dependable and cheap now days. You can buy a 4-terabyte portable drive for less than $90. That is more storage space than most folks can use in a lifetime. Think of just how many pictures, music, or special emails that you may never get back if you did not have a backup of them.

That is going to do it from here. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that we all get together at the DX Engineering / Great Lakes Convention in August!

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

HAMFESTING: As you can see from the growth on the Hamfest Schedule, clubs are making their best efforts to return their hamfests to the calendar. Several early-in-the-year swaps have been postponed, but some clubs are adjusting their timetables and setting their hamfests up with different configurations and planning them for dates later in the season.

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar. PLEASE NOTE THAT WE STILL HAVE SEVERAL CANCELLATIONS ON THE SCHEDULE.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

On the 2021 Great Lakes Div. ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

03/06/2021 - Cave City Hamfest, Cave City, KY -- CANCELED

03/07/2021 - WINTERHAMFEST, Elyria, OH -- CANCELED

04/25/2021 - Athens Hamfest, Athens, OH -- POSTPONED

05/21/2021 - Dayton Hamvention, Xenia, OH -- CANCELED

06/05/2021 - Fulton County, Wauseon, OH

06/12/2021 - Luce Co Yooper Hamfest, Newberry, MI

06/20/2021 - Monroe Hamfest, Monroe, MI

07/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH

07/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH

08/07/2021 - DX Engineering Hamfest & Great Lakes Div Convention, Tallmadge, OH

08/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest, Cincinnati, OH

09/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY

09/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI

09/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY

09/19/2021 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI

09/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH

12/04/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH

12/05/2021 - L'anse Creuse Swap, Madison Hgts, MI

If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3-month lead time.

If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ. We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts. Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.

73, Stay safe.

Light up those bands!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Monday, February 1, 2021

Dale's Tales for February

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for February, 2021

We are saddened by the loss of Dave Pruett K8CC (SK) who has been the Great Lakes Division's representative on the Contest Advisory Committee.

Dave served for many years to contentiously represent the interests of all contesters.  Currently, we are interviewing prospective members to represent our Division on the CAC.

Our Annual ARRL Board of Directors meeting was held by video conference on January 15 & 16.  Several Motions were presented that may be of interest. 

One was to consider changing several of our active committee configurations.  As proposed, it would eliminate the DX Advisory and Contest Advisory Committees and instead, create a pool of subject matter experts - of course this pool would include DX and Contesting experts plus potentially several others.  I think that it is quite fortunate that most Directors felt that the existing committee structure was working well and with a few considerations could be made even more effective without a major change.  This proposal did not gather enough Board support and the motion failed.

A motion was tendered to reactivate the HQ staff position of Chief Development Officer.  This position has been vacant for several years, and the Board considers it to be important to have a selected individual ready to work closely with those who would like to contribute to one of the ARRL's several development funds.  This motion passed.

The Legislative Action Committee presented their annual report and advised the Board that the draft bill for HOA-Resident Antenna Assistance has been completed and is expected to be entered in Congress early in the new session now beginning. This is the revised bill to clear the path so residents living in Homeowners' Association controlled areas can install effective Amateur Radio antennas.  It is a revised and updated plan, differing from the previous bill, The Amateur Radio Parity Act.

By vote, the Board will also be looking into various types of optional electronic balloting for ARRL Elected positions.  Electronic voting was tested several years ago and resulted in a low turnout.  The Administration and Finance Committee may offer a hybrid voting plan, making electronic voting an option for our members.

Other Board actions will be reported in the meeting minutes to be published as soon as they are approved.  Scott and I received some committee appointments and we'll cover these assignments next month.


SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.

Wow, January has just flown by.  It has been a busy month and I’ve already been assigned to a couple of very active committees. Let me tell you, they are rolling!  This is going to be a very exciting time for the ARRL.  If you’re not a member, you will definitely want to rethink that idea and soon!

Ok, let’s switch gears...  With the weather getting downright nasty, you’ll want to be thinking about how to keep the necessities going if the power would go out.  One way is with a whole-house generator.  It will do the job, including one on your pocketbook.  A portable gasoline generator will also work well, if you keep a fresh can of gas around and are willing to go out in the miserable weather to set it all up.  Now there is a new option for you to consider, Lithium battery portable power stations.

I sat in on a Zoom meeting the other week where these portable power stations were the topic. These stations are just coming into their own, but what makes them so interesting is that they are much easier and safer to handle and last for hours, even under the heaviest of loads.

The presenter did an excellent job of explaining how the power station works and how easy it is to setup and operate, right inside the house!

His power station is setup so he can quickly and easily power up most of the necessities in his home.  And, what makes this so great is that the batteries he is using are the same ones that he uses in his weed-whacker and lawn mower!  Yes, his power station was designed to use the same battery packs as his power tools.  So, all that he needs to do when the power starts to decrease on the power station is to pop in another pack!

Talk about a good return on investment!  These power stations have enough amperage to easily power your ham shack, a refrigerator or even freezer for quite a long time!  And Lithium batteries are not like the old lead acid deep cycle marine batteries that we’re all familiar with.  Lithium batteries give you years of maintenance free power, plenty of current to power those larger appliances and none of the mess, and best of all, you don’t have to go out into the miserable weather to hook anything up.  There is a wide variety of power stations and options to choose from.

That’s going to do it from here.  Let’s keep our fingers crossed that we all get to meet at a Hamfest somewhere soon, I’ve got a bunch of stuff to buy!

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division


HAMFESTING: This continues to challenge all of us as many clubs are making their best efforts to return their hamfests to the calendar.

Several early-in-the-year swaps have now been postponed, but some clubs are adjusting their timetables and setting their hamfests up with different configurations and planning them for dates later in the season.

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:

http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.  PLEASE NOTE THAT WE ALREADY HAVE SEVERAL CANCELLATIONS ON THE SCHEDULE.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for early 2021.  Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

On the 2021 ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

        03/06/2021 - Cave City Hamfest, Cave City, KY -- CANCELED

        03/07/2021 - WINTERHAMFEST, Elyria, OH -- CANCELED

        04/25/2021 - Athens Hamfest, Athens, OH

        05/21/2021 - Dayton Hamvention, Xenia, OH -- CANCELED

        06/05/2021 - Fulton County, Wauseon, OH

        07/10/2021 - Mansfield Mid Summer Trunkfest, Mansfield, OH

        07/18/2021 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH

        08/28/2021 - Cincinnati Hamfest, Cincinnati, OH

        09/11/2021 - Greater Louisville, Shepherdsville, KY

        09/18/2021 - Cadillac Hamfest, Cadillac, MI

        09/18/2021 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY

        09/26/2021 - Cleveland Hamfest, Berea, OH

        12/04/2021 - Fulton Co Winterfest, Delta, OH

If you club plans to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, they should do so well in advance of the planned Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings.  QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

If a swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ.  We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set.

Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts.  Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.

73, Stay safe.

Ham it up!



Dale Williams WA8EFK

Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org


Thursday, December 31, 2020

Dale's Tales for January

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for January, 2021.

HAPPY NEW YEAR and let's all hope it brings us back to a more normal lifestyle.

SOME CHANGES FOR 2021: With the New Year, we report some changes within the Great Lakes Division. As you know, Tom Delaney W8WTD chose not to run for re-election as our Division Vice Director. Former Ohio Section Manager Scott Yonally, N8SY was elected to the post and officially took office January first. We also bid farewell to "Tom's Tome", W8WTD's monthly news section of this column and introduce "Scott's Stuff", to keep you apprised of Division news from the Vice Director's perspective.

We also welcome the new Section Manager for the Ohio Section as Tom Sly WB8LCD takes the helm to manage the nation's largest Section in terms of ham population. Tom had been recently serving as Ohio's Affiliated Club Coordinator and brings a wealth of experience in team management to his new post.

My special thanks to Tom Delaney W8WTD who has been such a team player and wonderful associate while serving as our Vice Director. Thanks Tom for all of your efforts and successes and best wishes as you continue to enjoy ham radio.

A special note to Scott N8SY as he changes roles: "Scott, you voluntarily retired from the Section Manager slot - remember that - it is now WB8LCD's job - remember that. Tom will do it differently, make changes, bring in new ideas, and toss old ones. Sit back and enjoy, it's Tom's turn." <GRIN>.

UPDATES: The ARRL Board of Directors meets the third weekend of January, again by remote due to COVID restrictions. This seems to work pretty well for the actual meeting process, but is rather limiting when we attempt to discuss new ideas and try to build a coalition in support of a potential motion.

I suspect that it is not too much different from what most of are experiencing when conducting a remote radio club meeting. Still, it is important that we make a full effort to keep close contact with our membership and likewise take the extra action to keep those members involved. We are seeing a lot of live remote presentations and pre-recorded videos put to use. These have offered new technical training materials, reported on some historical and very interesting DXpeditions, provided some new contesting ideas and ham radio product reviews. Actually it is really taking some of the edge off for those of us in lock-down. Club programs are a revitalized initiative for radio clubs - let's keep it on a roll.

SCOTT'S STUFF: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Scott, N8SY.

Wow, what a year this has been for all of us. This being my first article as the Great Lakes Division Vice Director I want to say that I have some really big shoes to fill as Tom, W8WTD did a really exceptional job over these many years and I have a great example to follow and grow on. I will do my level best to carry on in his footsteps in serving Dale as a team partner in taking the Great Lakes Division to the “Next Level.”

A lot of you are most likely wondering just who the heck is this guy anyway. Well, here’s a little background information about me. I became licensed in January 1979 as a Novice. I was issued one of those unusual newfangled "KA8" calls that really stuck out “KA8DWI.”

Don’t worry, I’ve heard it all. But I was proud of becoming an Amateur Radio operator no matter what the call sign. Oh, I do have that call sign on a license plate! I soon upgraded to General and then again to the now almost extinct Advanced Class license and became KC8SS. Yes, I was kidded about now becoming “Suddenly Sober,” but I will say this, I really loved that call! I was sought after during Sweepstakes every year. My boss convinced me to upgrade one more time and I got my amateur extra along with a new call sign N8SY. YES, I am a CW nut as well as a life member of the ARRL.

I’ve always had a place in my heart for emergency communications and traffic handling. Over the years I have been a part of numerous emergency situations and have been very active in a number of traffic nets around the country. I’m currently the resident troubleshooter for ARES Connect assisting Headquarters as well as volunteers from around the country getting them up and running. In the late 1990’s I got interested in the world wide web and created a number of websites, including the one for the Great Lakes Division.

In 2019 I received the Joe Knight, Distinguished Service Award for my work as Section Manager of Ohio, and for my leadership contributions to the ARRL and its Field Organization. I am one of only 9 Section Managers in the country to receive this award and I am so very honored to be able to serve all of you.

That’s going to do it from here. I want to say to everyone…. Have a Fantastic New Year!! Let’s keep our fingers crossed that we all get to meet at a Hamfest somewhere soon.

--73, Scott Yonally N8SY, Vice Director, Great Lakes Division


HAMFESTING: For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at: http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.

If you plan to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, please do so well in advance of your Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set.

Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

This is a continuing struggle for most hamfest sponsors, both in terms of meeting community safety requirements and those imposed by the host venue. If your swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ. We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for early 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

On the 2021 ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

03/06/2021 - Cave City Hamfest, Cave City, KY

03/07/2021 - WINTERHAMFEST, Elyria, OH

04/25/2021 - Athens Hamfest, Athens, OH

5/21/21021 - Dayton Hamvention, Xenia, OH

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts. Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.

73, Stay safe.
Ham it up!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org

Monday, November 30, 2020

Dale's Tales for December

Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for December, 2020.

THE ARRL FOUNDATION, with the generosity of many donors and the hard work of a long line of dedicated Foundation Directors, has had a positive impact on the lives of many young amateur radio operator students since 1973. Being awarded an ARRL Foundation scholarship could mean the difference in whether a student can pursue their education in 2021 or not.

You can check on available scholarships at:
http://www.arrl.org/scholarship-descriptions

And you may use this URL for applications:
http://www.arrl.org/scholarship-application

Since only amateur radio operator students may apply, the chances of being selected for a scholarship are quite good. It would be a shame to miss this opportunity. The ARRL Foundation offers over 100 scholarships and it only takes a simple online application to apply. Please pass this information along to anyone you feel is eligible for this opportunity. It is your chance to have a direct positive impact upon the life of a student.

MY THANKS to you all for supporting me in the recent ARRL Election for Great Lakes Division Director. I am truly honored that I will be able to serve you for another term. As you know, Tom Delaney W8WTD has chosen to retire from his roll our Vice Director. Our new Vice Director will be Scott Yonally N8SY who will take office on January first. Scott currently serves as Ohio Section Manager. A new SM will be selected to fill the remainder of Scott's term. This appointment is made by ARRL President Rick Roderick K5UR, based upon recommendations from yours truly and the ARRL Radiosport and Field Services Manager Bart Jahnke W9JJ. We will be working with Scott and his staff over the next few weeks to complete this process.

OUR EFFORTS to convince the FCC to reconsider their proposed new fee structure for Amateur Radio licensing have been very strong and have included a wide range of opposing arguments. As of today, the FCC has received nearly 4000 responses to the NPRM. Thank you for your efforts.

With the expected changes to the Commission due to the departure of Commissioner O'Reilly and Chairman Pai, the FCC will not be expected to offer any major decisions through the remainder of this year.


TOM'S TOME: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Tom W8WTD.

My last column in this space. It’s been amazing over the past few years, to hear from so many people who have read something here and made comments, in person or by email. Thank you for reading.

It has been my privilege to serve as a representative for the Division with the ARRL. I’ve enjoyed helping Dale in all the business of the League, and it’s been especially rewarding to be able to talk to so many hams throughout the three states, getting your perspective on important matters, and being able to help you understand the ARRL’s position on the many things that affect ham radio.

Congratulations to Scott, N8SY, who will take over as Vice Director. I’m sure he will do a great job.

As for me, I’m just stepping back from some of the direct involvement with ARRL. I remain a strong supporter of the League, and still want to do whatever I can to further ham radio, especially getting newer, younger members interested. I miss seeing so many of you, and hope that we can safely go back to hamfests and meetings sometime in the coming year.

--73, Tom W8WTD Vice Director, Great Lakes Division


HAMFESTING: This is a continuing struggle for most hamfest sponsors, both in terms of meeting community safety requirements and those imposed by the host venue. If your swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ. We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests for early 2021. Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

On the ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

03/06/2021 - Cave City Hamfest, Cave City, KY
03/07/2021 - WINTERHAMFEST, Elyria, OH

For the latest detail on regional hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:
http://www.arrl.org/hamfests-and-conventions-calendar.

If you plan to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, please do so well in advance of your Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings. QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set. Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts. Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.


73, Stay safe.

Ham it up!

Dale Williams WA8EFK
Director
Great Lakes Division
wa8efk@arrl.org


Sunday, November 1, 2020

Dale's Tales for November

 Greetings, welcome to "Dale's Tales" for November, 2020.

MY THANKS to everyone who responded to the plea a few weeks ago to protest the re-imposition of fees for Amateur Radio Licenses.  The plea continues, as the NPRM Comment Period is still open for a few more days.

While the $50 fee can be amortized over 10 years, how many youngsters can be expected to do that?  How many adults do that?

ARRL's Legal Counsel has advised us that the FCC does have some options as they relate to the Congressional Mandate to recover costs through the imposition of fees.

The opportunity exists for you to let the FCC know your opinion on thematter.  For step-by-step instructions on the filing process, see:  http://www.arrl.org/FCC-Fees-Proposal  From there, select: "ARRL's Guide to Filing Comments with the FCC (PDF version or web version)" for the detailed instructions.

We know that ham radio is quite different from the commercial aspects of many radio services.  Amateur Radio has no profit motivations, and quite to the contrary, we can derive no income from our ham activities.

Certainly, that is one argument against an arbitrarily excessive fee for our licensing.  How many more can you add to that?  Please consider filing a response to the FCC's NPRM.

THANKSGIVING will be different for many families his year.  With notable upswings in COVID-19 infections on the increase, it's going to be tough sharing a turkey via Zoom but we urge erring on the side of caution as our families gather later this month.  Please plan to be safe.  All of our best wishes go out as we celebrate this year.

HALLOWEEN was last evening and many ham radio groups assisted their local communities with patrol efforts to help insure the safety of the youngsters out for Trick or Treat.  Our thanks go to all who participated.  It was truly different this year; many areas did not allow Trick or Treat, while others permitted it with homeowners participating at their own comfort level.  We had reports of several innovative non-contact ideas to deliver the treats, ranging from bags of treats hung out by clothes pins to chutes from second floor windows to drop candy directly into the Halloweeners' bags.  What fun.  Still, many hams safely volunteered their services, keeping watch for the safe passage for children.

TOM'S TOME: Comments from your ARRL Vice Director Tom W8WTD.

To say “what a year it’s been” is hardly a new thought, right?

Still, trying to see where we’ve been and where we might be going with ham radio might be worthwhile.  A lot of things happened that we don’t like, and some may have possibilities for the future.

Dale and I were just talking the other day about how in order to complete some simple bench projects, we actually had to go on the internet and buy new parts, instead of waiting for the next hamfest and finding what we need in the “anything in the box for a buck” from a local ham.  We miss that.  Hope it comes back soon. 

Even though most clubs are still meeting, the informal chats outside the main meeting aren’t happening, since everything is on Zoom.  On the plus side, I’ve been to several club meetings lately where the program portion was really outstanding.  Teleconferencing can bring experts from far away to a local meeting, without the expense or trouble of traveling.  We’re all getting much more comfortable with video.  Even after club meetings in person resume, look for this aspect to continue.

A good presenter has always been a draw for meetings, and the ability to reach out farther will help everyone.  Club officers should be thinking about who can be tapped for programs.  Many presenters are quite willing to share, particularly since they can do it from the comfort of their own homes.

Fall and winter bring contests and final antenna tweaking before the snow flies.  The great outdoors seems a safer place to avoid the virus, and antenna work usually involves some distance between workers.  So we can probably get some of those projects done in the next few weeks. 

Some of the bigger contests happen over the next few months.  Maybe you’re not a big contester, but you could give it a try.  We need to keep using all our bands.  Being on the radio for any purpose is a good thing right now.  The latest solar update indicates some good news that propagation may be on the increase.

On a technical note, some hams are IT professionals, and some are scared of computers.  It’s clear that interconnectivity makes things easier.

Did you see that ARRL has issued some new temporary guidelines for multi-operator stations for the ARRL DX Contest coming up in February and March?  Maybe the IT professionals can help the rest of us figure out how to set up network logging software and use a communications platform to stay in touch, so that more people and clubs will participate in contests like that one.

That’s about it for now.  Remember, talk on the radio!  And stay safe as the holidays approach.

--73, Tom W8WTD Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

HAMFESTING: This is a continuing struggle for most hamfest sponsors, both in terms of meeting community safety requirements and those imposed by the host venue.  If your swap is cancelled or the date is going to change, please notify ARRL HQ.  We work together with the HQ staff to verify all new date selections in the hope of mitigating date conflicts.

Here is the current listing of Great Lakes Division ARRL Sanctioned hamfests remaining through the end of 2020.  Please note that all are subject to change, so please stay current by checking the sponsoring club's web page before making your travel arrangements.

Still on the ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest calendar:

11/1/20 Massillon,   Massillon, OH

11/8/20 Livonia Amateur Radio Repeater Group,          Livonia, MI

For the latest detail on cancelled hamfests, check the ARRL web page at:  http://www.arrl.org/hamfests/search/page:5/keywords:Canceled/model:Event

If you plan to request ARRL Hamfest Sanctioning, please do so well in advance of your Hamfest date, as this allows adequate time for QST Listings.  QST announcements require a 3 month lead time.

Be sure to invite your ARRL Officials as soon as your date is set.

Things do require some advanced planning, especially under the current travel restrictions.

It should be noted that there has been a change in the way ARRL contributes to your ARRL sanctioned hamfest efforts.  Please carefully read the e-mail from ARRL Headquarters confirming your sanctioning as IT CONTAINS IMPORTANT DETAILS REGARDING PRIZES.

73, Stay safe.

Ham it up!

Dale Williams WA8EFK  Director - Great Lakes Division 

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ARRL Great Lakes Division

Director: Dale R Williams, WA8EFK

wa8efk@arrl.org

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Friday, October 16, 2020

Call To Action - FCC Fees for Radio Amateurs

 

Greetings fellow Great Lakes Divison hams.

It is time to protest the imposition of fees for Amateur Radio Licensing.

The fees Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published in this morning’s Federal Register (https://tinyurl.com/yyk8f2yp). The deadline for comments is November 16, and the Reply comment deadline is November 30.

With this in mind, I am extending the following suggestions you might consider using in writing to the FCC in response to the NPRM.  Our thanks to Dave Siddall K3ZJ, ARRL Counsel, for these guidelines.  Be sure to carefully review the paragraphs; "Some Suggestions" as the information therein will assist with much of the applicable background.

This subject is critical, the timing is critical.  I urge you to contact the FCC.  Address and related information is contained in the article referenced in the Federal Register.   Please use your own words to express your objections to the proposed fees.

(Good) Arguments Against FCC Fees for Radio Amateurs

Amateurs contribute to the public good. In many areas they provide an emergency communications backbone capability at no taxpayer cost.

Consistently we have witnessed storms and natural disasters completely wipe out internet, cellular, and other means of communication.  Radio amateurs often fill that void on an unmatched, flexible basis when needed.  One recent example is the California wildfires.  

Unlike operators in other FCC licensed services, Amateur Radio operators by law – domestic and international -- must eschew using their license for any pecuniary interest.  Amateurs are prohibited from earning or charging any money for any communications activity.  The expenses for their equipment and activities come out of their own pockets, with no opportunity for reimbursement or payment of any kind.

The United States is experiencing a severe lack of RF engineers and expertise at the very time it is needed by the burgeoning wireless industries.    Amateur radio is helping to meet the deficit, but much more is needed and youngsters (High School and College-aged) are least able to afford licensing fees.  RF knowledge and related digital expertise is needed to maintain U.S. leadership in wireless industries.

At a minimum, young people (below the age of 26) should be exempt from the proposed license fees.

Amateur radio is self-regulating.  (a) Amateur examinations are written and administered by radio amateur volunteers.  (b) Examination results and paperwork most often are submitted electronically to the FCC.

Electronic submission could be required if there would be a cost savings to the Commission. (c) Amateur radio educational classes are conducted by volunteers who by-and-large do not charge fees or tuition for teaching.  (d) The amateur service, in cooperation with the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau, has a volunteer corps that monitors the amateur airwaves and has programs that try to prevent their misuse before FCC involvement might be needed.  The amateurs also observe non-amateur signals both within amateur spectrum and outside it, and report unusual or suspicious signals.

Amateur radio continues to be a source of significant technological innovation that should be encouraged, not discouraged. 

Some Suggestions

We do not recommend arguing that the $50. fee every 10 years, which amounts to $5.00 a year, will “kill” amateur radio, even though as proposed this is for each covered application, which includes upgrade applications.  Tech-General-Extra could be $150. If exams taken at different sessions, a substantial amount.  But it “rings” the wrong way to say the whole service turns on $5/year for each licensee. If that’s all it would take ….

The Commission argues that the charges are required by the statute.  The word used is “shall”, which is mandatory, not optional.  But the statute does not set the amount, nor does it prohibit reasonable exceptions – evidenced by the Commission’s proposal to exempt from fees administrative update applications based on policy grounds.

This is not “aimed at amateur radio to kill it.”  There is a long history and precedent on charging fees for the licensing service involved, just as there is for passports, green cards, drivers' licenses (issued by states), etc.  Better to make pertinent arguments on why the fees would impair the public benefits of the amateur radio service than argue that the whole service might die as a result of a fee that, in fact, is less than the fee many of us paid in the 1960’s and 1970’s.

For background: this proceeding is being handled by staff unfamiliar with amateur radio.  It is being handled in the FCC’s Office of Managing Director (OMD), not in the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau where the amateur-specific Part 97 matters are handled.  The focus of OMD is accounting – budgets and the like for the entire Commission.

The fee proposals cover every FCC license and service across the board and the consideration was directed by Congress.  It is recommended keeping “ham jargon” out of comments, it won’t be understood by the intended recipients.


Thank you.

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ARRL Great Lakes Division

Director: Dale R Williams, WA8EFK

wa8efk@arrl.org

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