August 22, 2013

The Grande Ronde Radio Amateurs Association regular monthly meeting was held Thursday evening, August 22nd, at 7:00 PM at the La Grande fire station. Thirteen members were in attendance.

Following are the highlights of the meeting:

Mark, K7OWG, gave the wrap-up report on the Union County Fair booth and Special Event Station. The booth was a huge success with hundreds of people walking by over the four days, many of whom stopped and asked questions about ham radio and the club. The Special Event Station, W7GRA, operated twelve hours a day. We made a total of 54 contacts over the four days (in really crummy propagation conditions) using a Yeasu FT-450D radio, 100W, and a ground-mounted vertical antenna located between two buildings. Forty-nine of the contacts were with stations in the U.S., two were with Canadian stations, and three were DX contacts with stations in Eastern Europe, those being Lithuania, LY5A, Estonia, ES5QD and Croatia, 9A289A. We have sent out QSL cards to all our contacts. Having the fair booth was a group effort with many folks giving of their time and equipment to make it a success.

Mike, KF7STP, gave the report on our second annual club Swap Meet. While it was somewhat disappointing due to the light attendance, the meet was a large improvement over last year’s. There were six tables this year and lots more equipment for sale. And foot traffic was at least double what it was last year. We pretty much agreed that it just takes time for an event like this to take hold. A big “thank you” goes out to all who helped Mike get things set up and taken down.

There will be another Fox Hunt this Sunday, August 25th. It will begin with check-ins at 2:55PM on 146.55. The hunt will then commence at 3:00. Graham, W4PJS, is once again the “Fox”, and I’m sure he has a sneaky, sly, hiding place all figured out. He’ll broadcast for one minute every ten minutes on 146.55. When it’s all over the club buys dinner for all participants. So gather up your HT’s and directional antennas and get ready to hunt!

Guess that’s about it. The next club meeting will be Thursday, September 26th, at the La Grande fire station on Cove Ave. in La Grande. Hope to see you there!

Mark K7OWG