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Owatonna Steele County Amateur Radio 14-Apr-2017

OSCAR News - December, 2Ø11

OSCAR Meeting
The next OSCAR meeting is 10-Dec @ 9:00 AM, the second Saturday of the month. Meetings are held in the meeting room at the Owatonna HyVee, 18th Street @ Oak Avenue. The highlight of the December meeting is always the hard fought elections of officers. Recounts and legal challenges are not to be missed.

The next SKYWARN meeting is 20-Dec @ 7:00 PM, the third Tuesday of the month. Meetings are held at the Owatonna Fire Station.

Chris NCPG
Congratulations to Chris NCPG on his appointment as Deputy Director for Steele County Emergency Management. This is great recognition to the efforts Chris has volunteered behind the scenes for Steele COunty, CERT, and SKYWARN.

SKYWARN Recognition Day
Through the cooperation of local amateur radio operators, the National Weather Service is supporting the annual SKYWARN Recognition Day on Saturday, 03-Dec. Celebrating the contributions volunteer Amateur Radio operators make to NES via the SKYWARN storm spotting and reporting program. All amateur radio operators who participate in the SKYWARN program are more than welcome to participate.

Arli-Dazzle Parade From Don KCQNA
The City of Arlington Chamber of Commerce is asking for Amateur Radio operators to perform as Marshalls and Parade flow controllers. Line Up is at 4:00 PM on Saturday, 03-Dec and the parade begins at 5:30 PM. About 80 participants are expected for this parade and that may go higher if weather cooperates. This is an annual parade, but the city budget cut backs have cut back city resources so they are reaching out to anyone who can help provide safety, logistical and communication support for this parade. Hams will meet in the Baseball Parking Lot and well use the WBERN Repeater 146.610 (136.5) and 147.47 as simplex Channel 2.

I am thinking we need a minimum of 10 radio operators if not 15 or 20, so we can make a great representation of Amateur Radio and like we do for marathons and other special events, we will use special PRO CALL SIGNS under RACES/ARES Planning. If you think you or others can help us out, please reach out to me at: kc0qna@yahoo.com, 952-556-3873, or 612-578-7561 (cell).

Thank you in advance for your time and support.

FL-Digi Training
FL-Digi is one component of a suite of software programs designed for point-to-point digital communications. Fldigi is multi-mode, which means that it is able to operate many popular digital modes without switching programs, such as PSK31 and RTTY. You can learn more online or attend a training session. Sibley and LeSeuer County ARES groups are holding a training class on 10-Dec in Henderson, MN. The class is scheduled for 09:00 AM to 12:00 PM. It will cover FL-Digi along with emergency message handling. More information is available for Don KC0QNA (kc0qna@yahoo.com).

SKYWARN Breakfast
On Sunday, December 11th, Steele County SKYWARN and the Special Deputies will be co-hosting a Pancake Breakfast at the VFW Hall in Owatonna. Doors will be open from 8 AM to Noon. Tickets are $5 each ($6 at the door). SKYWARN only make money on pre-sales tickets, so be sure to buy you ticket in advance.

December Skies
The Geminid Meteor shower will occur 13-Dec, a great opportunity for meteor scatter. The meteors originate from the radiant point near the star Castor in the Gemini constellation.

Tracking Santa From Multiple Sources
Don't forget to be prepared to know when Santa is on the way this year. NORAD tracking is a fun way to add excitement to Christmas Eve. One suggestion to help make the tracking more believable is to use a satellite tracking program, such as Heavens Above. Select a time to view a bright satellite passing over the horizon. Go outside and watch "Santa" pass overhead.

John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon From Brian NBDD
Wondering what to do after the holidays are over? Come help us out This is your invitation to become a race volunteer for the famous John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. You can volunteer for one day, or for a number of days. Watching 600-750 happy sled dogs pass your duty location is a unique experience. You'll like it, and will DEFINITELY remember it.

One of my favorite volunteer services has been working with the Beargrease Amateur Radio Coalition (BARC) which provides essential communication for the annual John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon in N.E. Minnesota. It is the toughest, longest sled dog race in the lower 48 states. Fewer than 1/2 of the 24 teams finish each year. The January, 2011 race was about 380 miles, and lasted 4 days. Hams located along the race route relay team positions and health/welfare info., via many linked repeaters, in an area where cell phones are almost entirely useless. Temperatures during the annual race vary from the mid 30s to well below zero.

In 2011 we saw temperatures of -10, with wind chills around -40 to -50F. While working outside to gather official times, our HT's are worn INSIDE our clothing to keep the batteries working. At all locations, hams always have access to a warm vehicle or warm shelter. Duty time lasts up from 6 to 48 hours, depending on location and your availability. Plenty of help is needed as 8 Checkpoints and more than 20 road crossings are manned by hams working in 6 to 8 hour shifts. Each ham decides the number of hours or days he/she is able to serve. Some work at more than one remote outdoor location, moving when appropriate. Operators can also work 2-4 hour shifts at net control in Duluth, Minn., an indoor duty.

This year the race starts on January 29th at 1:00pm in Duluth. The race always runs mid-Sunday to Wednesday evening. Comfortable, reasonably-priced motels are near most duty stations. Here's your chance to prove your operating abilities in a very challenging environment. You'll need a 10-50 watt mobile 2 Meter rig. HT's will work at some duty stations.

If you would like more information check out the official web site and click on the get involved tab or go to the BARC web site.

If you have more questions please feel free to give me a call at 507-444-4572 during the day or 507-455-0730 in the evening.

Get out there and give us a hand!

OSCAR License Class
The 2012 Technician Class is set to begin 14-Feb. Scheduled teachers are Dennis NRPI, Dale WBPKG, Randy KDUNV, Jedd KCUOW, and Tom NUW. As always, we encourage OSCAR members to sit on the classes and heckle the instructors.

EDN Magazine Article
Amateur Radio is the cover story in the trade magazine, Electronic Design News (EDN). This article on Amateur Radio covers six of the 52 pages in the 03-Nov print edition.

On a related note, Fox News featured a story earlier this month on Amateur Radio.

History of the Telegraph From Multiple Sources
The 150th anniversary of the the transcontinental telegraph occurred in October. CBS News has a fairly extensive article.