Welcome To The ARRL Northern Florida Website

I hope this message finds you well and somewhere cool!

It has been a month since I “officially” took office as your Section Manager, so I wanted to bring you up-to-date with just a few items.

Our Section Webmiester, Ed W9CHA, has been very busy behind the scenes making significant changes and additions to the NFL Section Webpage. With the help of others, there is much new information on various modes and activities – I urge you to take a look, and make comments or suggestions to Ed to help increase our knowledge and resource base.

The Capital District started a new HF Digital Net on Sunday nights. From Dave Davis WA4WES, Capital District DEC: “Northern Florida Section HF Digital Net meets every Sunday evening at 1900 hours local (Eastern Time) on 3.590 MHz USB – if the frequency is busy, we will move down 5-10 KHz. We open the net on PSK 31, and then move to other modes. The net usually lasts about 30 minutes. Net Control Station is Don, KK4SIH, and we would like to invite any hams interested to participate in this net. Not only will they get exposure to digital modes, we will become familiar the various message formats, such as the ARRL radiogram and the ICS 213, and we will get to know other operators”. You’ve been invited!!!

I have pretty much finished all of the ARES Organization “housekeeping” over the last few months, updating the lists and getting vacant positions filled. We have an excellent organization with some dedicated folks, competent in EmComm and ARES operations. If you are not active in your local ARES groups, I encourage you to get involved, at least know who the folks are that make us look so good!

My next “challenge” is updating the Section & Station Appointments. The current list has over 260+ folks listed, with over 75% not having an e-mail or phone number in the files (provided by the ARRL Org folks). Some of the appointments go back to the ‘80s, so I am sure there are some “corrections” to be made. If you get an e-mail or a message from me, please respond as soon as you can so I can get this done! If you are interested in a Section Appointment, please feel free to apply! Here is the link for the various positions and application (online please!!): http://www.arrl.org/field-organization .

As I get time this month, I will be “anointing” more than “appointing” some folks to help get our Section information out and about…..I should have a Youth Coordinator, Contest Guru, Newsletter Editor and QRP/CW Liaison identified and “producing”. Thanks to those “victims”, er, I meant volunteers, for stepping up! QRX for more info!

Earlier this month, I attended the ARRL Centennial Convention in Hartford, CT.  My compliments to the ARRL staff and volunteers for a well-run operation, both at the Connecticut Convention Center and ARRL HQ in Newington. I got to meet the super-friendly HQ staffers and many of my counterparts from around the country (there were 28 SMs in attendance). Our SE Division Director Doug Rehman K4AC and Vice-Director Mike Lee AA6ML were also in attendance representing our interests. I also “ran into” other NFL Section Folks, including several from the Florida Contest Group here in Central Florida. Many other local NFL Section members was also in attendance. What really was exciting was meeting many “faces” to go with “call signs” I have known for years! My highlight was being inducted in to the Royal Order of the Wouff Houng”!!! I was glad I could make the trip! It was DEFINITELY worth it!

Speaking of “representing our interests”, if you are not aware or acted yet, HR-4968 – a US House of Representatives Bill to “remedy” antenna restrictions in homeowner’s associations and other areas –is in progress as we speak…..YOU NEED TO CONTACT YOUR ELECTED US HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE AND ENCOURAGE THE PASSAGE OF THIS BILL!!! Here is a link of more information and how to help get HR4969 passed…… http://www.arrl.org/hr-4969 …….while it may not directly affect you, it may help thousands of other hams who have restrictive covenants preventing the “reasonable accommodation” that we got in PRB-1 many years ago, but does not apply, to HOA and other venues.

Some upcoming events that you might want to be aware of:

* Contest Season is coming up fast! Get those stations ready for action, as the first big contest (name your fun!) is right around the corner. Check out WB7BNM Contest Calendar http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/contestcal.html

* The ARRL Centennial QSO Party is still on! http://www.arrl.org/centennial-qso-party

* The ARRL SET (Simulated Emergency Test) is coming up in October http://www.arrl.org/chapter-2-simulated-emergency-test-set

* OPARC Hamfest Tailgate  – Start Date: 10/04/2014 End Date: 10/04/2014 Location: Jacksonville Dog Fanciers’ Association, Inc. 6932 Morse Avenue Jacksonville, FL 32099 Website: http://oparc.net/hamfest Sponsor: Orange Park Amateur Radio Club Type: ARRL Hamfest Talk-In: 146.670 (no PL tone) Public Contact: Greg Fitcher , N4RVD PO Box 1824 Middleburg, FL 32050 Phone: 904-716-0187 Email: gfitcher@Icloud.com

* Florida State Convention (Melbourne Hamfest)  Start Date: 10/10/2014 End Date: 10/11/2014 Location: Melbourne Auditorium 625 East Hibicus Blvd. Melbourne, FL 32901 Website: http://www.pcars.org Sponsor: Platinum Coast Amateur Radio Society Type: ARRL Convention Talk-In: 146.250/146.850 (No PL tone) Public Contact: Don Winn , AF4Z PO Box 1004 Melbourne, FL 32902 Phone: 321-254-9495 Email: hamfest2014@cfl.rr.com

* Lake ARA 2014 Annual Tailgate – Start Date: 11/01/2014 End Date: 11/01/2014 Location: LARA Clubhouse 11146 Springdale Avenue Leesburg, FL 34748 Website: http://www.k4fc.org Sponsor: Lake Amateur Radio Association Type: ARRL Hamfest Talk-In: 147.000 plus offset (PL 103.5) Public Contact: Frank Anders , KK4MBX 7861 Crosswinds Way Mount Dora, FL 32757 Phone: 484-794-5828 Email: twfrank111@aol.com

That’s it for now, look for another update next month!   If you have any comments, suggestions, observations or ideas……please let me know! I AM HERE BECAUSE OF YOU AND ONLY FOR YOU! EVERYBODY COUNTS! WE’RE A TEAM!

73, and enjoy the remainder of summer……school starts in most areas in a few weeks, so “Watch Out for Children”.


Steve Szabo WB4OMM

Northern Florida Section Manager