Hello CCARC and welcome to 2016!!!
The first CCARC membership meeting of 2016 was held on the second Friday of the month, owing to the fact that last Friday was New Year’s Day. We hope that everyone had a good Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.
Ten members, as well as two prospective amateurs were present for this meeting which was primarily a planning session for 2016. Attendees, as always in alpha/numeric order were:
AA3RT – Art
AA3WS – Charles
KB3HNP – Joe
KB3KOW – Boy Scout Bob
KB3UYZ – Patrick
KB3WYR – Spencer
KB3YXS – Paul
KC3ASH – Ralph
KE3GG – Flyboy Bob
N2OMC – Rob
Two prospective members from historic Port Tobacco, Debbie and Mark Strickland
President Rob (N2OMC) opened the meeting by greeting the members. It was good to see everyone, especially Charles (AA3WS) who had suffered a heart attack two days before Christmas. Charles gave the assembled group a short description of what had happened to him. The good news is that he was out of the hospital within three days and is now back to his old self, albeit somewhat slimmer. It’s great to have you back Charles, take care of yourself. We never know when we might need your left foot Morse Code sending expertise!
Certificates were handed out to members of the VE team who had supported VE sessions during the 2015 calendar year and to those members who had worked at the special event session in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln at the Mudd House in April. For those of you not in attendance who have certificates waiting to be picked up, they should be at next month’s membership meeting, to be held Friday, February 5th.
Then Boy Scout Bob (KB3KOW) handed out copies of the results of the on line survey that had been sent out. Twenty three CCARC members responded to at least some of the questions that were asked. The primary focus of tonight’s discussion was on reviving club enthusiasm and scheduling of events. The major discussion focused on what activities were popular with the members who responded to the survey. Of course Field Day (To be held this year on June 25th & 26th) was mentioned. Kits or project building was also a popular topic and I think most everyone replied in the affirmative, the only issue facing us might be where to hold a project day.
It was suggested that the Maryland/DC QSO Party, to be held on August 13th & 14th this year (http://mdcqsoparty.w3vpr.org/) might present an opportunity for the CCARC to have a joint event with members from Calvert and St. Mary’s. KB3KOW also brought up a National Parks on the Air Day that may present another opportunity to operate at the Thomas Stone Historic Site. KE3GG mentioned a special event station originating with the World War 1 Museum (https://theworldwar.org/amateurradio) and it didn’t occur to me at the time but there are always many military stations active on Armed Forces Day (This year Saturday, May 21st). The club is always open to suggestion and we are interested in inputs from those of you who were unable to attend tonight’s meeting. Perhaps you can provide a fresh perspective.
Another topic that garnered much discussion was meeting programs or presentations. It only stands to reason that meetings are better attended when there is a program or speaker rather than just a business meeting. While those of us who have been in the position of Activities Manager know (As do other officers and members) it can be difficult to line up a speaker or presentation to interest the club every month. This is where YOU come in. Perhaps you have a friend, coworker or relative with a background in an area that may be of interest. It doesn’t always have to be radio related or technical in nature. Topics of local interest also seem to help increase attendance. So, IF you know of someone who could provide a presentation please let us know!
Also discussed were Hamfests. Charles is our “go to” guy who can tell you which events are generally for buyers or sellers, which ones are for “techies” and those that appeal to the old tube type “glow in the dark” radio guys. One thing we’d like to do is to revive the listing of local or regional hamfests.
Food is always a popular topic and in addition to the usual breakfasts, some discussion was devoted to possibly having a dinner or club picnic outing somewhere. Paul, KB3YXS, mentioned that the Port Tobacco Marina might provide a possible setting. The La Plata American Legion dinners were also suggested.
Member concerns: Bill (KE3RE AKA “Tugboat”) and wife Katie are wintering with their oldest son in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Bill is still going to regular dialysis but is having fistula issues again that may require more surgery. Carol (N3DMD) is home recovering from her broken femur. Things are going slowly so Carol would like a visit or call, even a text message to keep her spirits up.
With the start of the new calendar year it’s time for that yearly refrain that “Dues are due!!!”. Individual memberships are now $25.00 per year. (I’m uncertain if family membership prices have been raised.) While I have yet to make use of it, CCARC has joined the 21st Century and you can now pay your dues on line at the following link: http://k3smd.org/?page_id=964 You can still do it the old fashioned way as well by giving KB3KOW cash or check at a membership meeting. He can also take credit cards in person as well.
A reminder as well-this is an election year. At least three, possibly four, of the five club officer positions are going to be vacated. As of now it appears that the president, secretary and activities manager position are going to be open with one other undecided. The election will be held at the March membership meeting (March 4th). If you’d like to be considered for a position let any of the board of directors know of your wishes. Remember that your dues MUST be paid in order for you to be considered for a position or to vote in the election.
For some of you newer members, CCARC also has a Facebook page that can be found at:https://www.facebook.com/groups/121601477951088/
Heard after the meeting: Many of us are familiar with Ramsey Electronics kits. My first introduction to them came at the Gaithersburg Hamfest now almost 25 years ago. Unfortunately Ramsey has decided to drop out of the consumer kit market with the start of the new year. You can read the announcement here: http://www.ramseyelectronics.com/ce.htm
Disclaimer: I’ve attempted to recapture tonight’s meeting discussion as best as I could. As always, I may have missed or misconstrued something. If I have, please feel free to correct, revise or elaborate on any points that I may have missed.
73, Art, AA3RT