SARA Work Party 2
Kilo Parks Award
Fitzgerald Crew 2011
New Radio Gear For Some SARA Members!
SARA Does Skywarn
2014 SARA Officers
Release to Listen Award 2013
2023 Simonet Memorial Award
2019 SARA Executive Officers
SARA Work Party 3

MEMBERSHIP MEETING MINUTES – December 9, 2023

MEMBERSHIP MEETING MINUTES – December 9, 2023

Stillwater Amateur Radio Association

The Membership Meeting took place at Boutwells Landing, Stillwater, MN, and was streamed via Zoom for virtual attendees.

President:  Joe KCØOIO

The meeting was called to order at 9:19 AM by Joe KCØOIO.

Program:

The Program began at 9:21 AM.

EMP – Grid Down – Cyber Activity – Mike Rude N9MA

Mike N9MA presented his research on the topic of Electromagnetic Pulse/Transient Electromagnetic Pulse and the impact such events would have on electronics in our electronic-dependent world.  Great discussion was had within the membership attendees regarding how it works, the impacts it has, and what you can do about.  Mike emphasized that he was not trying to indoctrinate anyone on one point of view – he was only presenting the most reliable facts he could find to stimulate discussion, which it did.

Once Mike removed his tinfoil hardhat (no fooling!), we all enjoyed the demonstration of his metal lined go box and how it was effective in blocking out cell phone signals.  The question was still on the table as to whether the box would be sufficient to withstand a true EMP.

You are encouraged to view the presentation on the SARA club YouTube channel to learn more regarding this topic.

The program wound up at 10:01 AM.

Business Session:

Joe KCØOIO called to order the Business Session of the meeting at 10:11 AM.

The meeting began with members in the room and on-line introducing themselves.

Secretary’s ReportDave N9JNQ

The general minutes from the Membership and Board meetings are posted on the SARA website.  Please report any corrections or additions to: Secretary@radioham.org.

Treasurer’s Report:  Rich ADØSN

Beginning Total Balance:   11/01/2023     $17,427.13

  • SARA

Balance:                                                   $6,365.39

Income:                                                   $858.00

Expenses:                                                $610.54

Ending Balance:     11/30/2023         $6,612.85

  • RBF

Balance:                                                 $11,061.74

Income:                                                  $0.00

Expenses:                                               $63.19

Ending Balance: 11/30/2023        $10,998.55

Ending Total Balance: 11/30/2023       $17,611.40

Income for the month of November for the SARA account includes:

  • Dues:                                                      $770.00
  • Cups and decals:                                  $4.00
  • 50/50 Raffle:                                        $30.50
  • Donations:                                            $28.50
  • VE Session                                            $25.00

Expenses for the SARA account for the month of October includes:

  • SR-SE/Fuel, water, and firewood               $170.50
  • Award frames and mats                                $36.53
  • Splashtop membership                                 $99.00
  • Poinsettias for Boutwells                               $69.32
  • Flickr account renewal                                  $71.99
  • Zoom renewal                                                 $163.20

Expenses for the RBP account for the month of October includes:

  • WØJH antenna rope                                     $63.19

Joe KC0OIO noted that the treasury is in good shape.  Expenses included costs for the Edmund Fitzgerald Special Event, as well as the remote base setup.

Activities & Events

Tech Topic Thursdays/Eyeballs

The Thursday Eyeballs will all take place at the Stillwater Public Library through February.  Thanks again to Dan KE0IYF for his continuing efforts to secure rooms for our Eyeballs.

Board Meetings

The next Board meeting will take place Wednesday December 13, 2023, at 6:30 PM via Zoom.  All are welcome to participate.

Special Events

Remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald 2023 – The Fitzgerald event went down without a hitch at the Split Rock Lighthouse State Park on November 3-6, 2023.  Dave WØOXB reported that there were 26 operators, the largest crew in the 19 years of the special event.  The two QSL certificates, for WØJH and WØF, were included in the December SARA Signals Newsletter.  Most certificates have gone out.  Thanks to Shel NØDRX and Bob WØGAF for the data manipulation.  We included the first time operators in the QSL certificates this year, as well as the paining by Spike O’Dell W4WGN, a former DJ on Chicago’s WGN who was on the air at the station on the night of the sinking when the report came across the teletype, into the WØF certificate.  Dave thanks Shane WØNKA for bringing the ships bell, which was rung 29 times for the members of the crew who perished.  We had a total of just under 1000 QSOs; see the newsletter for a breakdown of bands, mode, etc.  Dave read a few of the comments received from stations worked.

Ice Station W0JH 2024 – The 2024 edition of Ice Station W0JH will take place on Presidents’ Weekend, February 17-19, 2024, on the shore and ice of Lake Elmo, MN, through the generosity of Dave KØAIF and Anne KØVOB.  Dave WØOXB noted that volunteers will be needed to construct the steps down to the lake in the days before the event.  Dave noted that the on-the-ice activities are not wheelchair accessible, but those with mobility difficulties are free to operate the station that will be set up in the SARA trailer.  Dave KØAIF promised ample lake ice for the event.

SARA POTA Challenge – The year-long SARA POTA (Parks On The Air) Challenge for calendar year 2023 is underway and going strong as we near the end of year. Bob WØGAF provided the standings through November 2023.

Bob noted that there are fourteen Legends on the board.  The leader board showed WØOXB holding onto a lead over WØNKA, followed by NØDRX in the QSO Hunter category.  WØOXB leads the phone category, with NØDRX and W0NKA following; KFØDQU leads the CW category, with WØGAF and WØGIB following; and WØADL leads the digital category, with W0NKA and KEØN in the chase.  For activations, KB9TBB leads with 156; KB9TBB leads with 93 parks activated; and KEØN leads with 8,043 QSOs.

The totals for the club are 39,721 Hunter QSOs (compared to 17,384 for the calendar year 2023); 828 Qualified Activations (compared to 329 for the calendar year 2023); 416 Parks Activated (compared to 1994 for the calendar year 2023), and 30,609 Activator QSOs (compared to 12,044 for the calendar year 2023).

Joe KCØOIO noted that over 60 of club members are participating in the Challenge.

Bob noted that there will be discussions about moving forward with a POTA Challenge for 2024, and comments and suggestions are welcome.

Minnesota Parks on the Air Day, organized by SARA – Joe KC0OIO reminded members that the MN POTA Day has been set for June 8, 2024, the same weekend that SARA has been having its club POTA day the past few years.  SARA is a promoter of and the host of the website for this state-wide event.  It will run from 10:00 AM until 6:00 PM.  It corresponds with the free admission day for Minnesota State Parks.  More information can be found at the mnpota.com website.  As we have done in the past years with this POTA day, club events will be included.

Dave KØAIF announced that he had designed and ordered a Minnesota POTA Day T-Shirt for himself.  At the suggestion of others, he asked if there was interest from membership in purchasing a similar shirt.  If we have enough orders, the price would probably come down from the $35.00 he paid for his shirt to about $20.00 per shirt.  A show of hands indicated that there as sufficient interest to pursue a group purchase.  If you have interest in a shirt, please contact Dave via his email address dnaleikam@comcast.net and provide your name, call, size, and number of shirts you are interested in.

Joe W3QLC suggested that the SARA Board take up the issue of making the T-Shirts generally available to statewide participants in the event.

Education and Training

Bob WØGAF reported that we are in the winter hiatus, with the spring Technician Class next up on the calendar.  as always, we are locking for instructors, anyone interested in teaching at future classes can contact Bob.  We already have a couple new folks interested in becoming an instructor.  Bob will get the dates of the class to Dan KE0IYF for securing the rooms needed for the classes.

Member Support/Assistance Initiatives:  M.A.P. &  New Ham Resource Group (NHRG) & More

•M.A.P is readily available for antenna projects and member-to-member assistance.  Keep in mind that  M.A.P. is available for more than just antenna raisings, contact Dave WØOXB with any issues you may have.

•New Ham Resource Group, found at newhamhelp@radioham.org, is SARA’s outreach & mentoring program providing technical support and loaner equipment.  Remember gear is available for loan for those without a means to get on the air.  Remember that the NHRG is available to all members, not just new hams.  You can contact Brian KØPU, Shane WØNKA, or Mark KEØQQN with any inquiries.  Shane noted that he has all the loaner equipment at his QTH, nothing is currently checked out.

Groups.io – Remember that the SARA email reflector group is now online at https://groups.io/g/StillwaterMNAmateurRadioAssoc.  This reflector is available to SARA members only, so you should apply at the groups.io site and you will be given access by the site moderator.  This reflector group is a good resource for technical questions, whereas the discord server is a good place for more casual discussion.

SARA Discord Server – The “Stillwater Amateur Radio Association” Discord server was recently established by Brian KB9TBB and is available exclusively for SARA members. The admin team is Brian KB9TBB, Shane WØNKA, and Collin KEØIYN.  To join, follow this link: https://discord.gg/Z9A8NsCCXh.  The link can also be found in the Weekly Bulletin near the bottom of the announcements.

DX News:  Mike NØODK

The ARRL 10 Meter Contest is running this weekend, December 9-10, 2023.  There are a number of DXpeditions underway at this time, as well as many planned.

Get the latest DX news by subscribing to the ARRL DX News www.arrl.org/contest.  Also check out www.ng3k.com for DX.  For contests try the WA7BNM Contest Calendar contestcalendar.com, it always current.

Remote Stations: Pat WAØTDA

Pat WAØTDA reported on the status of the remote stations.  The new WØJH remote station is located in Hayward, Wisconsin at the property of Brian KB9TBB and is in the testing phase.  Pat thanked everyone who went up the Hayward to set up the remote base.  The antenna is up about 70 feet in the air, is 300 foot in length, with 80 to 90 feet of ladder line down to the balun at the building eaves.  The station was bumped off the air during testing, most likely due to RFI.  It was proposed that one of the ferrite kits would be a good idea to install on the station.  Due to the issue, the station is currently running at a reduced 75 watts.

Pat suggests that there be some thought put in to who will be given privileges to use the WØJH remote station.  Joe KCØOIO noted that SARA club members and Handiham participants will have access, but we must set some guidelines for determining who else will have privileges.

Pat reported that the Park Rapids remote WØEQO went down, first due to bad coax and, second, due to the power company installing new poles and wires into the Scout Camp.  The station, though, is back on the air.

Newsletter: Pat WAØTDA & Dave WØOXB

The December issue of the SARA Signals Newsletter is now available.  Thanks to Pat WAØTDA for his many years as editor of the Newsletter.  He outdid himself in his swan song, the Newsletter tops 30 pages this month.

Joe KCØOIO noted that the newsletter forum was held on November 30 as part of the weekly eyeball, and it was the consensus that members still wanted the newsletter to continue.  However, it will take a different form, more technical and a forum for sharing experiences, as the Weekly SARA Broadcast takes care of the weekly announcements.  The Newsletter would no longer be a monthly publication, but perhaps every other month.  Collin KEØIYN has an idea to leverage WordPress to automate the newsletter.  We are still in need of someone to head the Newsletter.

ARES and Public Service:

Joe W3QLC, the Emergency Coordinator (EC) for Washington County ARES, noted that there will be an ARES meeting in the spring; he will be sending out a message to the leadership team today about planning for next year.  Brad VE3MXJ asked to be included on the message list in his role in the Canadian emergency system.  Check http://www.mnwashcoares.net/ for the latest information on Washington County ARES goings-on.

Program Committee:

The January 2024 program will be the always exciting SARA SWEEP gift exchange, with an anticipated appearance by the flying pig.

Club Business:

Nomination for 2024 club officers:  Nominations for club officers were made as follows:

President: Brian KB9TBB nominated Joe KCØOIO; seconded by Jim KIØB.  Joe accepted the nomination.  After three additional calls, there were no further nominations.  Motion made to accept the nominations as made by Dan KEØIYF; seconded by Mary KDØPKY.  Motion passed unanimously.

Vice-President: Brad VE3MXJ nominated Bob WØGAF; seconded by Collin KEØIYN.  Bob accepted the nomination.  After three additional calls, there were no further nominations.  Motion made to accept the nominations as made by  Brian KB9TBB; seconded by Dan KEØIYF.  Motion passed unanimously.

Secretary: Dave WØOXB nominated Dave N9JNQ; seconded by Dave WØOXB.  Dave passed word that he is willing to accept the nomination.  After three additional calls, there were no further nominations.  Motion made to accept the nominations as made by Dan KEØIYF; seconded by Greg KØGW.  Motion passed unanimously.

Treasurer: Dave WØOXB nominated Dave KØAIF; seconded by Collin KEØIYN.  Dave accepted the nomination.  After three additional calls, there were no further nominations.  Motion made to accept the nominations as made by Dave WØOXB; seconded by Greg KØGW.  Motion passed unanimously.

Director for the 2024-2025 period:  Dave WØOXB nominated Brad VE3MXJ; seconded by Greg KØGW.  Brad accepted the nomination.  After three additional calls, there were no further nominations.  Motion made to accept the nominations as made by Dan KEØIYF; seconded by Collin KEØIYN.  Motion passed unanimously.

A motion was made to close nominations by Collin KEØIYN; seconded by Dan KEØIYF.  Motion passed unanimously.  Elections will be next month at the January 2024 Membership Meeting.

POTA Challenge Awards Budget:   Joe KCØOIO noted that last year the membership approved $500.00 for POTA Challenge awards, and the expenditure came in just under that amount.  Due to the increase in participation in this year’s POTA Challenge, Joe suggests that the membership approve $750.00 for awards.

Collin KEØIYN made a motion authorizing the club to spend up to $750.00 for POTA Challenge awards; the motion was seconded by Dan KEØIYF.  The motion passed unanimously.

Local Activities:   The South East Metro Amateur Radio Club (SEMARC), our fellow amateur radio club in Washington County, MN, does not have a meeting scheduled for the month of December.  Its next meeting will be held in January at its new location of St. Luke Lutheran Church 7000 Hinton Avenue South Cottage Grove.

Wearables:  Do not forget that SARA-labeled hats, shirts, jackets, and other wearables are available from www.hamthreads.com.  SARA members will receive a discount on all orders.

New Business:

SK Estate Liquidation:   Dave WØOXB announced that he had been contacted by the family of a Silent Key, who is not a member of the club, regarding help in liquidating his amateur radio gear.  A broadcast will be sent regarding the equipment available.

WØNKA Activation:   Shane WØNKA announced that he will be activating next weekend, December 15, 2024, to coordinate with the release of the new Willie Wonka movie.  Golden Tickets, like in the 1970s movie, will be his QSL cards.  See Shane’s QRZ website for more information, or contact his via email or the discord server.

50/50 Raffle:

The sale of raffle tickets brought in $100.00.  Allan KFØMNS was the winner of the $50.00.  Congratulations Allan!

On the motion of Greg KØGW, seconded by Mary KDØPKY, the Business Meeting was adjourned at 11:26 AM.

Meeting attendance: 37; Virtual: 6