Summits-On-The-Air Weekend — Sept 13 & 14 2014

September 13th & 14th is the annual "Summits-on-the-Air" 2014 Activity Weekend

North America SOTA Activity Weekend is a casual event involving tiny battery-powered radios on mountain summits. It is not a contest but is intended to introduce "Summits on the Air" to newcomers with home stations who try to work summit operators during one or two days. There are no rules regarding power levels, modes or number of bands worked, but please be courteous when more than one station is trying to talk to a SOTA operator on a summit. The SOTA operators have just climbed mountains as high as 14,000 feet; they use low power; and they don't receive on split frequencies.

Check to spot who is on which mountain. Summits are numbered, and you can hover your cursor over the number to see the name and point value for each summit. Expect the website to show activity near 7.032, 7.185, 10.110, 14.342, 18.095, 18.155, 21.350, 24.905, 24.955, 28.420, 146.52, 446.00, and 61 Khz up from the bottom of 20, 15 and 10 meters CW. Participants are invited to collect points toward certificates and trophies offered by the twelve-year-old international SOTA group ( As we learned in past years, this is a barrel of fun for both hill climbers and home operators. See you then.

Also see the SOTA North Amer­ica Yahoo Group

HamFest 2014 Meeting for August / August KARC Meeting

August's HamFest 2014 meeting will be held Monday evening, August 18, 2014 at 6:30 PM at the American Red Cross, 5640 Venture Ct. in Oshtemo.

HamFest 2014 is only 2 months away!

We can always use additional volunteers to help ensure the continued presence of the Kalamazoo HamFest! It's YOUR event! YOUR investment of time and effort will directly affect the benefit to YOUR Amateur Radio community!

Details at

3 days later on Thursday evening, August 21st, the monthly KARC General Membership meeting will be held at the same location! Doors open at 6:30, meeting begins at 7:00.

Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2014 — Action Requested!

From our Michi­gan Sec­tion Manager:

On June 25, 2014, Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Kinzinger of Illi­nois (for him­self and Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Court­ney) intro­duced the fol­low­ing bill (HR 4969); which was referred to the Com­mit­tee on Energy and the bill is known as the “Ama­teur Radio Par­ity Act of 2014.”

I won’t tell you about what is in the bill, but I have attached a copy for your review.

The ARRL has begun a major drive to get let­ters writ­ten to indi­vid­ual mem­bers of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives in an effort to drum up sup­port and gen­er­ate co-signers. Ten days ago at the ARRL Con­ven­tion  the League had a booth with a cou­ple of folks there that asked every­one who passed by to sign a let­ter to their Con­gress­man that they would print a let­ter (per­son­al­ized, based on the call­sign of the ham in ques­tion) that the ham would sign and the ARRL would add it to the pile to be hand deliv­ered on the hill.

A pretty neat sys­tem and it gen­er­ated a lot of letters.

Now is the time for the hams out in the field to begin a let­ter writ­ing cam­paign as well. Just about every­thing we need is con­tained on the ARRL web­site:

  • All the infor­ma­tion about the bill.
  • A copy of the bill
  • A sam­ple let­ter in Word for­mat (eas­ily han­dled by a num­ber of free programs)
  • A spot to locate the name of your Rep­re­sen­ta­tive (once you are logged into the ARRL main site, one click gives you the cor­rect Rep based upon your address as listed on the ARRL mem­ber­ship database).
  • Direc­tions on how to send your let­ter (pre­ferred route is to send a signed copy by email to HQ for hand delivery)
  • Key talk­ing points for dis­cussing HB 4969

On Thurs­day, July 31, I will be send­ing out a “Call to Action” via email to nearly 2700 ARRL mem­bers who have signed up to receive bul­letins from the ARRL. I will urge the mem­ber­ship to go to the ARRL web­site and fol­low the direc­tions there to send let­ters to their US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive. I will also ask them to tell their friends and assist other hams in what­ever way they can in order to max­i­mize the num­ber of let­ters being sent. I would also like to be copied on every let­ter emailed to HQ so I can have an idea of how effec­tive we are. (wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org)

In addi­tion, I will send a note to Chip Locke, WB8ALW our Affil­i­ated Club Coor­di­na­tor and to Pat Mul­let, KC8RTW who is our Michi­gan Pub­lic Infor­ma­tion Offi­cer and ask them to dis­sem­i­nate the infor­ma­tion through their chan­nels to hams and clubs through­out the state. And last but not least, we will dis­sem­i­nate via var­i­ous Yahoo user groups such as the MIARPSC Group, the West Michi­gan Yahoo group, etc. I believe that we should be able to reach at least half the hams in Michi­gan through var­i­ous sources.

I will also ask indi­vid­u­als to make an effort to meet their rep­re­sen­ta­tive face to face as he or she will be back in Michi­gan dur­ing the August leg­isla­tive break and will be look­ing to talk with con­stituents. This may be an excel­lent time to drum up sup­port as every mem­ber of the House is up for reelec­tion in 2014. Some indi­vid­u­als are run­ning for another term and oth­ers are retir­ing, which gives us an oppor­tu­nity to talk with can­di­dates who are run­ning and poten­tially have a chance to cosign and or vote on our bill. The tim­ing here is good and we have sev­eral weeks to drum up sup­port and make contacts.

I know this is pretty short notice, but I would appre­ci­ate your review of my out­line and my plans and give me feed­back. It would be good for you to visit the web­site in ques­tion and fol­low what is there to send your own let­ter. By fol­low­ing the process, you will quickly see if some­thing has been left out of the infor­ma­tion. Since I have already sent my let­ter when I was at the Con­ven­tion, my next step will be to go to my Rep’s web site and send one to him using his email ser­vice located there. That kind of “dou­ble dip­ping” is accept­able and encour­aged as well.

I look for­ward to hear­ing from you.



Larry Camp, WB8R

ARRL Michi­gan Sec­tion Man­ager
ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio™
517.278.0406 (Home)
517.617.4883 (Cell)
wb8r [at] arrl [dot] org

Down­load (Kinzinger-Courtney-HR-4969.pdf, PDF, 243KB)

July 2014 KARC Meeting

The KARC Gen­eral Mem­ber­ship meet­ing will be held this Thurs­day, July 17th at 7 PM. Meet­ing will again be held at the Greater Kala­ma­zoo Chap­ter of the Amer­i­can Red Cross at 5640 Ven­ture Ct. in Oshtemo Town­ship.

The busi­ness por­tion of the meet­ing begins at 7 PM and we try to have the front doors open by 6:30 for those who would like to social­ize, meet new mem­bers, or renew acquain­tances with cur­rent members!!

Hope to see you there…

Public Demonstration of Emergency Communications June 28-29

“Who ya’ gonna call?  Kalamazoo County’s Radio Hams!”

       Despite the Inter­net, cell phones, email and mod­ern com­mu­ni­ca­tions, every year whole regions find them­selves in the dark. Tor­na­does, fires, storms, ice and even the occa­sional cut­ting of fiber optic cables leave peo­ple with­out the means to com­mu­ni­cate. In these cases, the one con­sis­tent ser­vice that has never failed has been Ama­teur Radio.

      These radio oper­a­tors, often called “hams” pro­vide backup com­mu­ni­ca­tions for every­thing from the Amer­i­can Red Cross to FEMA and even for the Inter­na­tional Space Sta­tion. Kala­ma­zoo County’s “hams” will join with thou­sands of other Ama­teur Radio oper­a­tors show­ing their emer­gency capa­bil­i­ties this weekend.

        Over the past year, the news has been full of reports of ham radio oper­a­tors pro­vid­ing crit­i­cal com­mu­ni­ca­tions dur­ing unex­pected emer­gen­cies in towns across Amer­ica includ­ing the Cal­i­for­nia wild­fires, win­ter storms, tor­na­does and other events world-wide. When trou­ble is brew­ing, Ama­teur Radio’s peo­ple are often the first to pro­vide res­cuers with crit­i­cal infor­ma­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tions. On the week­end of June 28 – 29, the pub­lic will have a chance to meet and talk with area ham radio oper­a­tors and see for them­selves what the Ama­teur Radio Ser­vice is about as hams across the USA will be hold­ing pub­lic demon­stra­tions of emer­gency com­mu­ni­ca­tions abilities.

      This annual event, called “Field Day” is the cli­max of the week-long “Ama­teur Radio Week” spon­sored by the ARRL, the national asso­ci­a­tion for Ama­teur Radio. Using only emer­gency power sup­plies, ham oper­a­tors will con­struct emer­gency sta­tions in parks, shop­ping malls, schools and back­yards around the coun­try. Their slo­gan, “When All Else Fails, Ham Radio Works” is more than just words to the hams as they prove they can send mes­sages in many forms with­out the use of phone sys­tems, inter­net or any other infra­struc­ture that can be com­pro­mised in a cri­sis. More than 35,000 ama­teur radio oper­a­tors across the coun­try par­tic­i­pated in last year’s event.

        “The fastest way to turn a cri­sis into a total dis­as­ter is to lose com­mu­ni­ca­tions,” said Allen Pitts of the ARRL. “From the earth­quake and tsunami in Japan to tor­na­does in Mis­souri, ham radio pro­vided the most reli­able com­mu­ni­ca­tion net­works in the first crit­i­cal hours of the events. Because ham radios are not depen­dent on the Inter­net, cell tow­ers or other infra­struc­ture, they work when noth­ing else is avail­able. We need noth­ing between us but air.”

In the Kala­ma­zoo County area, the Kala­ma­zoo Ama­teur Radio Club and the South­west Michi­gan Ama­teur Radio Team, as well as mem­bers of the Kala­ma­zoo County Radio Ama­teur Civil Emer­gency Ser­vice will be demon­strat­ing Ama­teur Radio at:

River Oaks County Park

9202 East Michi­gan Avenue (M-96) (Map)

Gales­burg, MI 49053

on Sat­ur­day and Sun­day, June 28th and 29th.

On the air oper­a­tion from approx­i­mately 2 PM Sat­ur­day and end­ing no later than 5 PM Sun­day. Setup will be ongo­ing Sat­ur­day morn­ing, tear-down imme­di­ately after ceas­ing on the air operations!


The Field Day site planning meeting will be held at 7 PM on Wednesday evening, June 25 at

the park for any ham that would like to operate a station or volunteer in any way!


We invite the pub­lic to come and see ham radio’s new capa­bil­i­ties and learn how to get their own FCC radio license before the next dis­as­ter strikes!

Ama­teur Radio is grow­ing in the US. There are now over 700,000 Ama­teur Radio licensees in the US,
and more than 2.5 mil­lion around the world. Through the ARRL’s Ama­teur Radio Emer­gency Services
pro­gram, ham vol­un­teers pro­vide both emer­gency com­mu­ni­ca­tions for thou­sands of state and local
emer­gency response agen­cies and non-emergency com­mu­nity ser­vices too, all for free.

To learn more about Ama­teur Radio, go to

The pub­lic is most cor­dially invited to come, meet and talk with the hams. See what mod­ern Ama­teur Radio can do. They can even help you get on the air!