Wednesday, December 19, 2012

News from K5RAV

West Gulf Division Newsletter December 2012

    ---    2012 Holiday Greeting
    ---    WGD Announces New Annual Division Awards
    ---    N0D, Special Event Station The End of the world!
    ---    Thousands of Scouts on the Air in WGD During JOTA
    ---    2013 ARRL Convention Speakers
    ---    Happy 17th Birthday Kelsee!
    ---    ARRL Foundation Scholarship Season
    ---    Sci-Tech Discovery Center Celebrates Amateur Radio
    ---    Logbook of the World Update
    ---    WGD Section Manager Elections
    ---    November Sweep Stakes 2012, Yes – Sierra – for SCHOOL
    ---    NTX Section Convention, Cowtown Hamfest
    ---    Planned ARRL Events for K5RAV and N5AUS
    ---    Upcoming Hamfests/Conventions

News from David Woolweaver, K5RAV, West Gulf Division Director

---2012 Holiday Greeting

In 2012, John Robert Stratton N5AUS, Vice Director, and I were honored
to serve the West Gulf Division and the good people of Oklahoma and
Texas.  We were ably assisted in our duties by four outstanding
individuals who serve as Section Managers:  Bill Roberts, W5NPR SM WTX,
Kevin O’Dell, N0IRW SM OK, Lee Cooper, W5LHC SM STX and Walt Mayfield,
KE5SOO SM NTX.  These men are the face of the ARRL locally and are the
leaders of the Field Service organization.  We are blessed to have them
on the WGD Team.

Throughout the year, we celebrated numerous ARRL sanctioned events
where we had the opportunity to learn what issues our members felt were
important to their needs in Amateur Radio.  In addition, the membership
shared with us their ideas on how to improve the ARRL in its 2nd
century.  As the Amateur Service grows, now exceeding 700,000 people,
our sense of community grows deeper.  We have expanded the ways in
which we participate in our communities and have found new ways to
encourage people of all ages to join in the world of ham radio.  We
invite you to follow the progress of the WGD on the website, on Twitter at ARRL_WGD and on Facebook at ARRL West
Gulf Division.

As we celebrate the Holiday Season, we pause to remember those Silent
Keys who passed too soon from our midst and acknowledge their
contributions to Ham Radio.  We look forward to meeting many of you at
the conventions and hamfests of 2013.  Make plans now to attend a
convention or hamfest in our area.  To be successful, these events need
your support.

On behalf of the West Gulf Leadership, I wish you and your family a
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and may the spirit of the Holiday
Season fill you with joy.

---WGD Announces New Annual Division Awards

Director David Woolweaver is pleased to announce the creation of the
West Gulf Division Annual Division Awards.  There are two primary
awards: Ham of the Year and Young Ham of the Year, which will be
complimented by a third award, the West Gulf Division Excellence Award.
 While the first two awards are self explanatory, the third award
represents any Amateur Radio endeavor that the nominators feel deserves
recognition.  Suggested categories can be found on the Division website. They include Educator of the Year, Radio Scouter of the
Year, Technical Achievement and Amateur Radio Organization of the Year
among many others.   For the WGD Excellence Award only, the nominators
are not limited to the suggested categories.

Divisional Awards will be presented at the West Gulf Division
Convention each year.  Nominations for 2012 Award Winners will be
accepted until April 15, 2013 for presentation at HamCom in June.
Nomination forms for each nominee (by category) must be supported by at
least three ARRL members on the award nomination form, a minimum
150-word statement and any available supporting documentation.  Other
rules do apply and can be found on the WGD website at

The Division Awards judging panel consists of four (4) ARRL members,
selected by each of the Section Managers in North Texas, Oklahoma,
South Texas and West Texas Sections.  The Section Manager may opt to
appoint his/herself to the committee.  The fifth judge is selected by
the Division Director and may reside anywhere within the West Gulf
Division.   Neither the Division Director nor the Vice Director will
participate in the vote.

--- N0D, Special Event Station celebrating The End of the world!

That’s right, the end is finally near.  According to one of the three
Mayan Calendars, the End of the world will occur on Dec 21, 2012. To
celebrate this literally once in a lifetime event, Special Event
Station N0D (Now Zero Days) will be activated on 10-80 meters for three
days during and after (?) the end of the world.   December 20 is a
celebration of the end of the world. December 21, the day of
destruction, we will be on the air as long as possible.  December 22nd,
that is a little iffy right now.

N0D team will be working available satellite passes beginning December
15th, 2012, through the end of the world and possibly beyond until
December 22nd.   The team will be using the Official Doomsday call
sign, N0D.  This will provide cosmic, even intergalactic coverage, for
the end of the world as we know it.

Amateur radio stations around the crumbling globe are invited to
contact N0D, who will be operating from secret, undisclosed locations.
Our operating schedule may be a little erratic as destruction rains down
upon us.   Those who may be looking skyward for the end of the world,
N0D will be operating on several satellite passes.

 You can celebrate Doomsday by contacting N0D directly on the air.
Amateurs can also become an official Doomsday station by registering on
our website.  You will be given a registration number and the authority
to identify yourself as “Official Doomsday Station” followed by
your Doomsday number.

QSL with a SASE to KK5W, the WGD’s very own Doomsday imaginer, Ron
Litt.  If Doomsday actually does happen, we regret that a QSL will not
be possible, so hold on to your SASE until the 22nd at least.  Check
out our website for a preview of the N0D QSL card.

Amateurs can also become an official Doomsday station by registering on
our website.  You will be given a registration number and the authority
to identify yourself as “Official Doomsday Station” followed by
your Doomsday number.  Official Doomsday stations will receive the
Doomsday Station Certificate.

It is not entirely clear exactly how it will happen. Will it be a
cataclysmic shift in the earth’s magnetic field, Global Warming on
steroids, earthquakes, volcanoes floods, global thermonuclear war,
meteor collision, the 10 plagues of Egypt UFO invasion who knows? There
are scientists, soothsayers and philosophers on both sides of the
question.  Either way it will be an event worth remembering...or maybe
there will be no one left to remember it?

More information is available on the Official N0D website,  You can also e-mail the N0D team at   Check our website for the latest updates at

--- Thousands of Scouts Get on the Air in WGD during JOTA

The 2012 Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) was very successful and lots of fun
according to initial reports received by BSA and the ARRL.  49 stations
were pre-registered on the BSA JOTA web site in the West Gulf Division.
 Registrations were up considerably from 2011.  The stations in the
Division estimated that over 2600 scouts would be acquainted with
amateur radio through this world-wide event.

The ARRL also has a "Soap Box" like page setup for JOTA.  It's called
"JOTA Stories."  You may submit a brief report at  Photos are welcome to be submitted.

As you may have read in previous Division News, the West Gulf Division
issued a 'Challenge' to clubs and stations to setup and operate JOTA
stations in each of the 24 BSA Councils of the West Gulf Division.  To
recognize our Hams' participation, the Division has offered a colorful
certificate.  If you operated during JOTA 2012 or would like to present
a certificate to a scout who communicated over your station, you may
request a certificate by emailing   The appropriate
certificate will be sent to you via email in PDF form.

For those who helped acquaint a scout (or scouts) with amateur radio
during Jamboree on the Air, the West Gulf Division wishes to express
its sincere Thanks.  JOTA 2013 will take place the weekend of October
19-20.  We hope to have a more competitive Challenge in place for 2013
and encourage clubs and individuals to start planning for a fun, "field
day' like activity for JOTA.  More details will be forthcoming.  JOTA
isn't a contest, so the Challenge will award points based on
participation in various Radio Scouting categories.

--- 2013 ARRL Convention Speakers

The West Gulf Division Leadership, in concert with West Gulf Section
Managers and convention organizers are proud to announce the slate of
2013 speakers:

North Texas Section Convention / Cowtown 2013, Fort Worth, Texas
January 18 – 19, 2013
Nathan McCray, K9CPO, ARRL Education and Technology Program Instructor

Oklahoma Section Convention / Green Country Hamfest, Claremore, OK
March 8 – 9, 2013
Chuck Skolaut, K0BOG, ARRL Field and Regulatory Correspondent

West Texas Section Convention / 58th Annual St. Patrick’s Day
Midland, TX, March 16, 2013
David Woolweaver, K5RAV, West Gulf Division Director

South Texas Section Convention / Greater Houston Hamfest,
Rosenburg, TX, March 22 – 23, 2013
Ward Silver, N0AX, QST Contributing Editor and Author

West Gulf Division Convention / HamCom, Plano, Texas
June 7 – 8, 2013
Rick Roderick, K5UR, ARRL First Vice President

Texas State Convention / Summerfest, Austin, Texas
August 2 – 3, 2013
Riley Hollingsworth, K4ZDH, Special Counsel for the Spectrum
Enforcement Division, FCC (retired)

All announced speakers are confirmed but are subject to change due to
unforeseen circumstances.

--- Happy 17th Birthday Kelsee!

Kelsee, KF5RGG spent her 17th birthday with a valiant try to WAS in one
afternoon.  She missed on KS, NE and AR.  She is extremely happy with
the results and her efforts and we are too!  She gave everyone a chance
to say hello, offer their best wishes and close.  The afternoon of
activity netted 16 pages of logs and equaled more than 400 contacts.
Great job Kelsee and Happy Birthday!

Kelsee is a huge promoter of ham radio at her high school.  Yes
everyone, kids are more than willing to study the materials, get a
license and stay involved.  They do not have to give up their cell
phones to do it.  In fact, embrace (smart) cell phones - the number of
amateur radio apps available is amazing!

From around the country hams were calling Kelsee and her friends on the
phone and IRLP telling us about the huge pileup trying to get through.

Huge support came from our friends within OMIK helping to promote
traffic towards Kelsee and working to help keep the frequency clear.
OMIK is certainly the model when it comes to supporting amateur radio
and youth in America ... - consider joining this fine
organization.  If you are unsure, listen to their Sunday net on 14.295
MHz from 16:00 - 18:00 UTC that is followed by a Tech Talk at 1pm
Eastern Time on the same frequency - competent, hands on, experienced
operators willing to offer genuine suggestions and advice to problem
solve or help move you into an area with more information.   If you are
not sure of a direction to proceed, the narrator or someone listening
has probably been down that path and is never afraid to tell you the
good and bad.  For those wondering, I am good in the BlueBook!  Ask
what that is about, when you check in.

 Justin KB7CSW and Frank KB0MMR helped with equipment and antenna setup
and beam re-positioning.  After all, Kelsee only has a VHF/UHF dual
bander in her car.

 (Contributed by Paul Goulet, KC5CYY)

--- ARRL Foundation Scholarship Season

The ARRL Foundation is now receiving scholarship applications for the
2012/13 scholarship season.  Each year the ARRL Foundation awards more
than 70 scholarships that have been funded entirely by the generosity
of radio amateurs and friends, to young hams that are pursuing higher
education. The awards range from $500 to $5,000.

All applicants must submit a full application and transcript to be
considered (other rules may apply to specific scholarships).  The
application period for all ARRL Foundation Scholarship opened October 1
each year and closes promptly on February 1, 2013.  Awards are usually
announced to the winners by letter in mid-May.   Applicants should
review the scholarship descriptions as some awards have specific
geographic criteria or requirements as to course of study.

Governed by a nine member volunteer Board of Directors, the ARRL
Foundation is devoted to providing valuable programs to serve the
Amateur Radio community.  To learn more about the ARRL Foundation or
its scholarship program please visit their website at

--- Sci-Tech Discovery Center Celebrates Amateur Radio

On November 14, the Board of Directors of the Sci-Tech Discovery Center
in Frisco hosted a reception in celebration of the Centers Amateur Radio
and Weather stations that were graciously donated by The Brandenburg
Foundation and The Goldblatt Family Trust, respectively.
Representatives from the Plano ARK, McKinney ARC, Denton County ARC,
Lake Area ARKC, Dallas ARC and Richardson Wireless Klub were invited to
attend.  Attending on behalf of the ARRL was WGD Director Woolweaver,
K5RAV and NTX Section Manager, Walt Mayfield, KE5SOO.

The project began with a donation by David and Diana Brandenburg of the
Brandenburg Life Foundation in February 2012 with full installation
being completed in October.  David, K5RQ, has provided funding for
amateur radio stations in schools and museums throughout the country
including the Heard Museum in McKinney, Haggard Middle School in Plano
and the Saint Paul School in Richardson.

 Additional funding for a WeatherBug commercial-grade weather station
was provided by the Goldblatt Family Trust.  The installation at
Sci-Tech provides up-to-the-minute reporting of weather conditions on
the Internet and is used by WFAA Channel 8, an ABC affiliate, as well
as other news organizations that monitor weather in the north Texas
area.  Multiple NTX Amateur Radio operators and clubs are supporting
the Sci-Tech Discovery station and are staffing the station at least
one Saturday per month.

--- Logbook of the World Update

The ARRL has created a new informational page to issue daily status
updates and information of interest to the Logbook of The World (LoTW)
user community. These updates will include planned downtime and changes
that will impact LoTW operations. In addition, LoTW’s processing queue
is now updated hourly, listing how many logs and QSOs have been uploaded
to the LoTW system that are awaiting processing. New hardware that will
improve LoTW’s throughput is on order and is expected to be running
in six to eight weeks.

Rick Murphy, K1MU, and Dave Bernstein, AA6YQ, have been charged with
rebooting the Trusted QSL open source project. If you have demonstrably
strong C++ development skills that you’re interested in applying
toward improving LoTW’s usability and efficiency, please contact
Bernstein via e-mail

We appreciate the user community’s patience while we while work to
bring LoTW’s performance to an acceptable level.

(Reprinted from the ARRL website)

--- WGD Section Manager Elections

The ARRL announced recently that the summer election cycle for Section
Managers yielded no change in the Oklahoma Section and that Kevin
O’Dell, N0IRW was declared elected for his term beginning October 1,
2012.  Additionally, Section Manager for North Texas, Walt Mayfield,
KE5SOO has been advised that he faced no opposition in his bid during
the winter election cycle.  Walt will be declared elected at the end of
the electoral process in February, with his new term beginning on April
1, 2013.

Congratulations to both gentlemen and a hearty thank-you for your
willingness to serve on the front lines of the ARRL Field Service

--- November Sweep Stakes 2012, Yes – Sierra – for SCHOOL

KF5CRF operated from their school radio club station at Eisenhower
Middle School, Lawton, OK on Saturday November 17th.  Nearly every
on-air voice was 6th graders searching for contacts as they try to make
a clean sweep and contact all sections.  In the background, you heard
the voices of their licensed 8th grade coaches, validating the contact
and motivating the 6th graders to “GET THEM - WE NEED THEM!”

Starting at 6th grade, it will take most students 18 months to go from
being coached to being coach!  Bringing young people into the hobby
takes a huge investment of time and energy, and yes real tears will
shed on test days.  Some will drop out but most will stick with it and
seeing that confidence and competence happen is worth it.

November licensee’s and upgrades include:  Lilly, KF5PBL on her
upgrade to General.  7th graders, Jada, Lexley, Kerson, Jonathon and
8th Graders Logan, Jessup, Kristopher and Kolby on achieving their
Technician license!

All students are familiar with operating in a busy HF environment.
During the School Club Roundup, the team worked 920 QSO’s, all 50
states and captured several DX contacts.  The SCR is held bi-annually
in October and February and proves to be a week long, fun filled event
for the students.

When W1AW stopped by the classroom, the remote operator asked if he
could make an exchange with all the licensed students … he was
unprepared as nearly all of the licensed students were present and he
made himself late getting back to work.  When a South African stopped
in, every student lined up to say hello and make an introduction.

During Museum Ships Weekend (June 2012) about 12 students from the
middle school radio club traveled across the state to Muskogee,
Oklahoma, to operate from inside the decorated submarine the USS
Batfish, WW2SUB.  Or work adjacent to the surviving memorial of the USS
Oklahoma Memorial, WW2OK.  If you worked WW2SUB or WW2OK, and thought
that the operator “sounded a bit young” you probably talked with
one of the students.

Only stations working from inside the submarine could operate as
WW2SUB.  All stations outside of the submarine had to work as WW2OK –
It was an honor for the students to be so close to such important parts
of our history.

On November 2, 2012 Robert Chapman KA5VST presented KF5CRF with an
award for their participation during the 2011 November Sweep Stakes
“Oklahoma Section Middle School High Score”.  Present for the award
presentation was Marcos KF5LLG, Itzel KF5JAZ, Kameron KF5NNS and Tristan
Clifton Harper, KE5YZB/KF5CRF is the school teacher and school radio
club organizer.  KF5CRF has licensed 24 students from 6th grade to 8th
grade.  Please remember they are a little middle school radio club.  If
you hear them calling CQ, please spot them on your favorite DX
reflector.  If you hear those timid little voices calling CQ, stop in
and give them a contact and please remember to say a few words of
encouragement.  Remember their exchange will be “Sierra” for

(Contributed by Paul Goulet, KC5CYY)

--- NTX Section Convention, Cowtown Hamfest

The Lockheed Martin Amateur Radio Club is sponsoring ARRL NTX Section
Convention at The Cowtown Hamfest 2013. The event will be held January
18-19 at the Lockheed Martin Recreational Area in Fort Worth.

We are working on a great program this year for the NTX Section
Convention at Cowtown HAMFEST 2013. One of the Sessions planned is for
School Teachers who would like to teach Amateur radio to their students
and clubs that support schools teaching amateur radio. Nathan McCray,
K9CPO, ARRL Instruction and Resource Coordinator will be the main
speaker during this session. He will demonstrate some of the techniques
used and share the many resources available for schools by the ARRL.
We will have some teaching aids and items from ARRL HQ thanks to K9CPO,
who will be visiting to teach us how to encourage youth to become
interested in Amateur radio.

ARRL Section Manger Walt Mayfield, KE5SOO will be hosting the NTX
Section Mentoring booth at the 2013 Cowtown Hamfest and NTX Section
Convention. The Mentoring booth staff will have lots of different gear
on hand to demonstrate and teach attendees about the different modes
and gear related to Amateur radio and electronics.  Additionally, we
are working with the Cowtown leadership to have at least two sessions
that focus on basic operating topics. If you would like to assist with
these forums or assist in the Mentor Booth, please let Walt know at

Gather more information by visiting the Cowtown Hamfest website at  This is a great family getaway weekend as
January 18th is opening day for the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo
(  Make your reservations now!

(Contributed by NTX SM, Walt Mayfield, KE5SOO)

--- Planned ARRL Events for K5RAV and N5AUS

Director Woolweaver, K5RAV and Vice Director Stratton, N5AUS are
planning to attend the following upcoming events:

-ARRL Annual Board Meeting, January 18-19, New Orleans, LA
- Green Country Hamfest, OK Section, March 8-9, Claremore, OK
- 58th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Hamfest, WTX Section, March 16,
Midland, TX
- Greater Houston Hamfest, STX Section, March 23, Rosenburg, TX

- ARRL Annual Board Meeting, January 18-19, New Orleans, LA
- 11th Annual Irving Hamfest, March 9, Irving, TX
- Williamson County ARC Hamfest, March 15, Georgetown, TX
- Belton HamEXPO, April 20, Belton, TX

ARRL Convention and Hamfest events are a great place to visit with the
Division and Section Leadership! Each event will also include an ARRL
forum where you can receive additional insight into Division and
Section matters.

At anytime that you have a concern or just want to say hello, contact
Director Woolweaver at  Visit our website at; follow us on Twitter at ARRL_WGD and on Facebook at
ARRL West Gulf Division.

-- Upcoming Hamfests and Conventions

01/12/2013 | 2013 Amateur Radio Fiesta
Location: Schertz, TX
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: San Antonio Radio Club

01/18/2013 | North Texas Section Convention (Cowtown Hamfest)
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Lockheed Martin Amateur Radio Club

02/02/2013 | Hamfest & Computer Show
Location: Mooreland, OK
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: Tri-State Amateur Radio Group

02/23/2013 | Orange Hamfest 2013
Location: Orange, TX
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: Orange ARC & Jefferson County ARC

03/02/2013 | Elk City Hamfest
Location: Elk City, OK
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: West Central Oklahoma Amateur Radio Club

03/08/2013 | Oklahoma Section Convention (Green Country Hamfest)
Location: Claremore, OK
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Green Country Hamfest Committee

03/09/2013 | 11th Annual Hamfest
Location: Irving, TX
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: Irving Amateur Radio Club

03/16/2013 | West Texas Section Convention (58th Annual St. Patrick's
Day Hamfest)
Location: Midland, TX
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Midland Amateur Radio Club

03/16/2013 | Williamson County ARC's Hamfest
Location: Georgetown, TX
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Sponsor: Williamson County Amateur Radio Club

03/23/2013 | South Texas Section Convention (Greater Houston Hamfest)
Location: Rosenberg, TX
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Brazos Valley Amateur Radio Club

ARRL West Gulf Division
Director: David A Woolweaver, K5RAV

News from the American Radio Relay League