The June 2008 President's Letter is available here.
MAC President’s Column
My Ham Radio Rebirth
After the recent two-month hiatus of our club’s newsletter, this month your president returns to haunt these pages (now in electronic format) with yet another of his semi-autobiographical columns. This month, I am going to tell you how I rediscovered ham radio after a hiatus of my own. Along the way, I hope to hint at how we can perhaps nudge a few more inactive hams back onto the air.
I moved to the Edgewater neighborhood from Park Ridge in the spring of 2005, partially because I was changing employers and partially because I had just become significantly less married. I had been a no-code Technician class ham (and 2-meters only, at that) ever since I was first licensed in 1993. I had been more or less off the air for at least the past 5 years, but had not forgotten to renew my ticket in 2003. With all these changes in my life, I decided it was time to re-investigate my old hobby. I knew Field Day was coming, so I went to the ARRL webpage and searched for local clubs. MAC turned out to be geographically the closest one, so when Field Day came I showed up at the Lincolnwood EOC.
I ended up staying at MAC’s 2005 Field Day for far longer than a short visit, and in fact I found myself getting up the next morning and driving back over to the EOC for more! Working the HF bands on Field Day was just the nudge I needed to start me towards my General ticket, and I have been active in ham radio ever since.
It seems to me that we have a lot of people who are members or former members of our club that are in the same position I was in, inactive and/or unmotivated to upgrade. Field Day is our golden opportunity! As you know, we cannot invite the general public to the EOC… but we can certainly invite our own members. Let’s find everyone in the club who is a Technician class or not yet licensed and put them on HF – there can be no better motivator to upgrade than to taste "the real thing!"
I strongly encourage every single member or friend of MAC to stop by Field Day at the Lincolnwood EOC on June 28/29, even if it’s just for a quick visit, even if you don’t plan to operate. Just stop by and say hi.
73 DE N9THH