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For those of  you who  could not make it to our first Winter Field Day in the Bald Eagle Pavillion at Quiet Waters Park, I will tell you that you missed on a great operating opportunity. The group made many contacts with our new set up and we had a lot of fun operating and gabbing with other hams there. Although there was a slight chill in the air at times and it did rain lightly briefly twice we were not bothered in the least and the rain did not dampen our spirits. It sure beat the June heat I think.

Thank you to Jeff Stahl, Joe McGee and Mike Wolf for various parts of planning, calling members and readying us for the event. I will not go into much detail as I want to save the info for the “post mortem” talk by Jeff Stahl at our Feb.17, 2018 dinner meeting at Wing’s Plus in Coral Springs. He will outline what we tried and how we did with it. Please join us at 7 pm after the SEFTN. We would love to see you there.

I will say that the attendees to WFD were well  pleased with the food that was offered, much of it homemade. We had Ricki Witte’s Chili, Melanie’s Red Lentil soup, meatballs and sauce, a terrific three bean salad again done by Ricki as well as tuna salad, and carrot salad made by Melanie. There was no chili left nor three bean salad which is a testament to Ricki’s ability in the kitchen. The rest of the food had minimal leftovers so there was no waste. We tried something different for WFD as far as collecting money for food. We guessed what the attendance would be and collected at the event. In June, however, we will not be able to do this as collecting at the event and “guessing what quantities to buy” proved most exasperating. It is hard to live within the constraints of a budget when you have none!

As far as news goes, our new ICOM repeater is on it’s way and Ricky Eaton will be working on it next weekend should it arrive this Friday as intended. I cannot wait to see just what improvements we can make and how the system will enhance our capabilities to communicate. Thank you Ricky and your helpers for making it possible.

The club will also be purchasing a 20 M and a 40 M, 500 watt band pass filter for the June Field Day. This will allow us less interference during operating on the different bands.

At WFD, Carol Sjurgen and myself were discussing the fact that there seems to be less volunteers in amateur radio as well as in other hobbies. We wondered if it was a “millennial” thing or are the rest of us who have always volunteered just getting too old and frail to do so. Whatever the problem we hope to see a rebirth of volunteering in our club. Yes, it is difficult to make a commitment and follow through but it is not impossible! I would like to invite the rest of the group to do it at least once and experience the good feeling you get from it. Remember, you are important in the scheme of things and sharing time and talent is really what giving is all about. A society with no volunteers is a sad one indeed.

Until next month, I remain, sincerely yours,

Melanie Fernandez

January 28, 2018