Tuesday, July 5, 2011

West Gulf Diviision JULY NEWSLETTER

   National Hurricane Webinar July 7th
   ARRL National HamCom 2011 Great Success
   Field Day Accidents
   Tragedy in NTX
   Ham Radio in the Park
   Summer ARRL Board Meeting
   Walt Mayfield, KE5SOO new Assistant Director
   K5RAV and N5AUS to operate W1AW
   Planned ARRL Events
   Upcoming Hamfests/Conventions

News from David Woolweaver, K5RAV your West Gulf Division Director

---National Hurricane Webinar July 7th
A few months ago, Director Woolweaver held a Hurricane Preparedness
Webinar for SM's, SEC's and other ARES officials in the West Gulf
Division.  Mike Corey, W5MPC, ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response
Manager joined the webinar to add the national perspective.  That
webinar was so successful that Director Woolweaver invited the Delta
Division, Southeastern Division and Atlantic Division Directors to
him in organizing a webinar at the national level.  Greg Sarratt
Southeastern Division Director, invited the National Hurricane Center
staff to present at the webinar and Mike Corey, ARRL HQ, agreed to
return as well.  The notice of this webinar is listed below.
The ARRL will host a webinar from 8-9:30 PM (EDT) on July 7 to present
information about the 2011 hurricane season and the Amateur Radio
response.   This webinar was organized by ARRL Directors N3LLR, K5MC,
W4OZK and K5RAV. The program will offer presentations from
representatives from the National Hurricane Center and WX4NHC, the
Hurricane Net, the Hurricane Watch Net and the ARRL. Webinar
registration is open to all, but will be of particular interest to
those amateurs in hurricane-prone areas. If you are interested in
emergency communications and hurricane preparedness
and response, you are invited to attend this online presentation.
To register, please go to

---ARRL National HamCom 2011 Great Success

Over two days in June, HamCom hosted the 2011 ARRL National Convention
were attendees and venders all enjoyed a successful event.  At the
EXPO, attended by 70 ARRL staff and volunteers, members were able to
meet and greet with such notables as ARRL President Kay Craigie, N3KN,
Directors Dick Isely W9GIG (Central), Greg Widin K0GW (Dakota), Joyce
Birmingham KA2ANF (Hudson), Cliff Ahrens K0CA (Midwest), Jim
Fenstermaker K9JF (Northwestern), Bob Vallio W6RGG (Pacific), Brian
Mileshosky N5ZGT (Rocky Mountain) and Greg Sarratt W4OZK
(Southeastern).   Joining them were Board Officers First Vice
Rick Roderick K5UR, Vice President Bruce Frahm K0BJ and, International
Affairs Vice President Jay Bellows, K0QB as well as many Senior
Officers of the ARRL.
HamCom hosted a record 150 Boy Scouts in their "Radio Merit Badge in
a Day" program, 46 commercial vendors and, 64 forums, notably
including a 250+ person, standing room only crowd for Riley
Hollingsworth, K4ZDH, retired FCC Special Counsel for the Spectrum
Enforcement Division, Laura Smith, current FCC Special Counsel, and of
course the National Weather Service SKYWARN classes.  Additionally, to
compliment the recent overwhelming success of the WGD webinars on
Antenna Restrictions (April 27) and Antenna CCRs (June 1), ARRL Chief
Counsel Chris Imlay W3KD, IAVP Bellows K0QB, Midwest Division Director
Ahrens K0CA, and ARRL Regulatory Information Manager Dan Henderson
hosted a crowd pleasing forum on Antenna Restrictions.
A great deal of thanks goes to the Dallas Amateur Radio Club for
hosting the Wouff Hong ceremony on Friday night and, also, for joining
the Garland Amateur Radio Club and Dallas County REACT for co-hosting
the special event station of W1AW/5 during the convention.  We also
extend our appreciation to the Ham Association of Mesquite for a great
job of managing the convention Talk-In frequencies.
The ARRL thanks HamCom organizers Bill Nelson AB5QZ, Fred Varian
WD5ERD, Jim McClellan N5MIJ and their countless volunteers for a job
well done!

---Field Day Accidents

Unfortunately, Field Day in the West Gulf was marred by two separate
accidents injuring three amateurs.  Accidents can and do happen.  An
automobile accident in the Irving area injured one amateur and an
accident resulting for the removal of an antenna in the Wichita Falls
area injured two amateurs.  At last report, all of the amateurs
involved are at home and are recovering.

---Tragedy in NTX

Gordon Keahey, KD5TEX, was killed in a two car collision in Rockwall
county June 25, 2011.  Gordon was not only a dedicated amateur and
active in SKYWARN, he was an active member of the North Texas Patriot
Guard Riders who provide motorcycle escort for fallen soldiers. He
had served as a paramedic, Volunteer Firefighter and emergency medical
responder. Gordon leaves behind a son and a daughter and a large
extended family.  The loss of anyone is a tragedy and that is
especially true for amateur radio operators who provide such great
service to their communities.  Please be safe out there.

---Ham Radio in the Park

The Genesis of HAM Radio in the Park occurred in February 2008. I had
volunteered to become the Public Information Officer of the Ham
Association of Mesquite (HAM).  I had also been "voluntold" to be the
director of our Field Day efforts for 2009. I had acquired a set of
military surplus fiberglass poles and wanted to experiment with them
for supporting wire antennas. Not having enough real estate to
experiment with, I set out for one of the local parks. Along the way I
talked about what I was planning to do over the local repeater. Some
of the local HAMs picked up on that and decided to join me. Including
myself, I think about half a dozen folks showed up including Paul
Sullivan KD5TKO, Kathy Sullivan (not licensed at the time but now
KE5ZXN) and Bill Mageors KE5PUC (now KB5UFO). Paul and Kathy stopped
Subway on the way over and picked up some sandwiches. I seem to recall
that Kathy shared her sandwich with me.
Anyway, we set about figuring out how to use these poles to support a
wire antenna. We did raise a dipole and managed to make a few contacts
before the sun went down and it started to get kind of chilly.
Having been "voluntold" to head up the Field Day effort, it occurred
me that a monthly event such as this would be helpful at getting ready
for Field Day. So for March, we decided to set up a formal event by
renting the pavilion at Paschal Park, the most recent site of our
Day efforts. But what do we call this event? Since were using a park
Mesquite, I turned to our own Parks and Recreation department for
inspiration.  Mesquite P&R holds a number of events throughout the
under the ... "In The Park" banner such as Movies In The Park,
Christmas In The Park, etc. So it seemed natural to call our event HAM
Radio in the Park. A little bit of trivia. HAM Radio in the Park (HAM
in all caps) refers specifically to the event in Mesquite while Ham
Radio in the Park (Ham in upper/lower case) refers to the event
generically. Sometimes it is simply shortened to Radio in the Park.
HRitP was successful at the original purpose of getting HAM ready for
Field Day. We had HRitP all the way up to June. We discussed
discontinuing the event after Field Day. Somewhere along the way,
took on a life of its own. Although I can take credit for the original
idea, something like this doesn't happen in a vacuum. You have to have
the right elements. And we were blessed with that. We had a president
that was interested in growing the club and a club with a membership
stocked full of great people. A perfect storm as you will.
There are a number of aspects to HRitP that I think have made it so
popular and successful. First, it held outdoors and is intentionally
unstructured. Obviously this would not work in all parts of the
country. We normally use public park pavilions and shelters. These
structures are available for reservation for a nominal charge. I
mention at this point that although the first few HRitP events were
for out of club funds, we now enjoy the support of the City of
by way of the City offering HAM complimentary use of the park
pavilions. This is through the support of our Mayor Mr. John Monaco.
Mr. Monaco has a background that includes emergency preparedness. So
appreciates just how important a healthy and thriving Amateur Radio
community can be.
The pavilions are covered and include tables, water, bathrooms and
electricity. Sometimes we use shelters that do not have power, so we
bring our own portable generator. They are usually close to other park
facilities such as playgrounds and walking paths. So it is possible to
turn it into a family outing. The entire family can come out and make
it a picnic.
There are normally a number of different activities going on
simultaneously. Constructing and deploying HF wire antennas is a very
popular activity. New Amateurs can come and get help, prospective
amateurs can stop by to meet the local HAMs, ask questions and get
answers. There are several Amateurs in our club now that are HRitP
success stories. That is, they stopped by to find out what this was
about and are now active members of the club. We normally deploy signs
that bring visitors in as well.
I will leave you with this. Underlying all of this is my desire to
our community better. There is a specific problem that I am trying to
address. That problem is the decline of young people pursuing
careers such as science, mathematics and engineering. If we do not
reverse that decline, our country is headed for trouble. I am
that if we can get our youth involved in Amateur Radio at a young
age, we can expose them to a much larger world and send them along a
lifelong path of exploration, discovery and learning.
(submitted by Andy Carstarphen, WY5V)

---ARRL Summer Board Meeting

The ARRL Board of Directors will hold its 2011 Second Meeting July
15-16 in Windsor, Connecticut. Directors, Vice Directors and ARRL
Officers will be in attendance.  The meeting will be preceded on
Thursday, July 14 with meetings of the Administration and Finance
Committee and the Programs and Services Committee. The Administration
and Finance Committee is chaired by Midwest Division Director Cliff
Ahrens, K0CA. This committee studies, advises and makes
for all administration and financial matters of the League, including
recommending the annual budget to the Board, making recommendations in
regard to staff management and monitoring investment of ARRL funds.
Programs and Services Committee, headed by Director Bill Edgar, N3LLR,
of the Atlantic Division, studies, advises and makes recommendations
for all programs and services the League provides, including operating
activities and the Field Organization.
---Walt Mayfield, KE5SOO new Assistant Director
In May 2009, Director Woolweaver announced a new class of Assistant
Directors, noting in part that "Amateur Radio is so vast and complex
that it is impossible for one or even two people to keep current with
all facets of the service.  I want to represent all interests to the
best of my abilities; consequently, I have created a new class of
Assistant Director called the Special Service Assistant Director.
of these new Special Service Assistant Directors has been chosen to
represent a specific area of amateur radio and each has been asked to
provide information and updates to the Director and Vice Director."
It gives me great satisfaction to announce the appointment of Walt
Mayfield, KE5SOO, as the new Assistant Director for Club Activities.
Walt currently serves as President of the Denton County Amateur Radio
Association and as the NTX Section Emergency Coordinator.
Although Walt is already very busy, he has agreed to take on the
responsibility of assisting the Division in establishing better
communication with clubs in Oklahoma and Texas.  Clubs are the bedrock
of amateur radio and I want the Division to do what it can to support
all of their activities.
---K5RAV and N5AUS to Operate W1AW
Amateur Radio should be fun and what could be more fun than operating
the world class HF station at W1AW? Nothing! Every ARRL member is
entitled to be a guest operator at W1AW and, in January 2011, Director
Woolweaver and Vice Director Stratton exercised that privilege.
Taking personal days before the ARRL January Board meeting, the WGD
Leadership team called "CQ West Gulf Division" on 14.240 Mhz during
brief guest operating periods on January 18th and 19th. A record 210
contacts were made providing many amateurs with their first W1AW QSO.
The station used was composed of a Yaseu FTDX9000, Acom amplifier and
wide spaced 20 meter beam at 120 feet.
Due to the overwhelming demand for more activity from HQ and by a
special arrangement with ARRL staff, N5AUS and K5RAV are scheduled to
operate W1AW on Sunday July 17th.  The operating times will be 9:00 AM
to 11:00 AM and 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM CDT.  Look for W1AW again calling
"CQ West Gulf Division" on 14240 MHz more or less.  In January,
operation was permitted only on Monday and Tuesday.  We hope that the
Sunday operating hours will allow more amateurs to make contact with
Real time updates on operating frequencies and other matters will be
posted to Twitter and Facebook.  See below for contact information.
Receive up to date status messages sent to your phone without a
account by sending the text: "follow K5RAV" to 40404
If you have a Twitter account you can follow us by clicking on this
http://twitter.com/k5rav or @K5RAV
You can follow us on Facebook by going to the link below and clicking
on "Like".
W1AW, also known as the Maxim Memorial Station, was dedicated on
September 2, 1938 and contains articles of historical value to Amateur
Much of today's ARRL Headquarters as well as the City of Newington
up surrounding the W1AW facilities. To learn more about W1AW, its rich
history and current transmitting abilities, visit

---Planned ARRL Events for K5RAV and N5AUS

Director Woolweaver, K5RAV and Vice Director John Stratton, N5AUS are
planning to attend the following upcoming events:
K5RAV and N5AUS - 2011 Second Meeting (ARRL) Board of Directors
Meeting, Windsor, CT, July 15-16th.
N5AUS - Ham Holiday 2011, OK Section Convention, sponsored by the
Central Oklahoma Radio Amateurs, Oklahoma City, OK, July 29-30th.
K5RAV and N5AUS - Austin Summerfest, Texas State Convention, sponsored
by the Austin ARC and Texas VHF-FM Society, August 5-6th.
K5RAV and N5AUS - Texoma Hamarama, West Gulf Division Convention,
sponsored by the Texoma Hamarama Committee, Ardmore, OK, Oct 21-22nd.
ARRL Convention and Hamfest events are a great place to visit with the
Division and Section Leadership!   Each event will also include an
forum where you can receive additional insight into Division and
At anytime that you have a concern or just want to say hello, contact
Director Woolweaver at K5RAV@arrl.org.
---Upcoming Hamfests/Conventions
07/09/2011 | TARS Hamfest
Location: Texas City, TX
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: Tidelands Amateur Radio Society
Website: http://www.tidelands.org
07/29/2011 | Central States VHF Conference
Location: Irving, TX
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Central States VHF Society
Website: http://www.csvhfs.org/
07/29/2011 | Oklahoma State Convention (Ham Holiday 2011)
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Central Oklahoma Radio Amateurs
Website: http://www.hamholiday.org
08/05/2011 | Texas State Convention (Austin Summerfest)
Location: Austin, TX
Type:  ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Austin ARC and Texas VHF-FM Society
Website:  http://www.austinsummerfest.org
08/27/2011 | Gainesville Hamfest 2011
Location:  Gainesville, TX
Type:  ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor:  Cooke County Amateur Radio Club
Website:  http://www.gainesvillehamfest.org
10/01/2011 | HamEXPO 2011
Location:  Belton, TX
Type:  ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor:  Temple Amateur Radio Club
Website:  http://www.beltonhamexpo.org
10/21/2011 | West Gulf Division Convention (Texoma Hamarama)
Location:  Ardmore, OK
Type:  ARRL Convention
Sponsor:  Texoma Hamarama Committee
Website:  http://www.texomahamarama.org
11/05/2011 | Enid Hamfest
Location:  Enid, OK
Type:  ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor:  Enid Amateur Radio Club
Website:  http://www.enidarc.org/enidhamfest
ARRL West Gulf Division
Director: David A Woolweaver, K5RAV

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