Minutes – February 2020

Meeting Minutes of February 4, 2020

President Mike Metroka WB8BZK called the February 2020 meeting to order at 7:00 PM in the Crystal Lake Bank meeting room. The Pledge of Allegiance was led once again by Dave Holmgren K9AT.

Board members present were John Dewey KA9CAR, Gary Dembski W9GD, Dean Hettel WD9FOO, Ralph Iden WB9ICF, Dan Larson KD9M, Mike Metroka WB8BZK, and Mike Salak KC9Q.

A total of 44 people were in attendance including five guests, David Bryne KC9ZVD – Aurora, Michele Heaver KC8NAI – Arlington Heights, Robert Langsfeld WB9TZC – Hoffman Estates, Richard Quaas NQ9R – Sharon, WI and Robert Yeoman – Crystal Lake.

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the January 2020 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review. A motion to approve the minutes was made by Mike Pecorini KD2RPE with a second by Dennis Ryan KA9PUC. The motion was approved by voice vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel WD9FOO presented the membership and financial reports. As of January 31, 2020. MCWA has a membership of 121 full members, 2 associate members, and 8 family members for a total of 131.

Opening Balance 6,973.98  
Deposits 179.53 Dues (less PayPal fees)
  10.00 New memberships
Expenditures 9.60 mcwa.org 1 yr. domain renewal
Interest 0.07  
Final Balance 7,153.98  

Kent Dulaney K9KMD motioned to approve the financial report and was seconded by John Kalenowsky K9JK. The motion was carried by voice vote.

Annual Membership Dues

Membership dues for the upcoming year are $10 and are now payable. If you haven’t yet renewed your membership, please contact our treasurer Dean Hettel WD9FOO to remit $10 using cash, check, or PayPal (as Friend).


John Kalenowsky K9JK finished first in the Central Division Limited Rover category in the June 2019 VHF contest and displayed the beautifully designed plaque that he received for his accomplishment.

Olaf Nurmepuu W9FY was in attendance and the club congratulated him for his recent Five Band DXCC and ARRL Triple Play WAS awards.

Congratulations to John and Olaf!


Mike WB8BZK thanked Mike KD2RPE and Ralph WB9ICF for the 3D printed desk plates that reserve places at the head of the table for the club officers.

The members were reminded that if membership dues for this year are not paid on or before the March 3, 2020 meeting, you will be removed from the roster and will lose access to the Groups.io reflector and Facebook member page.

Hamfest/Conference Reports

A number of members went to the WCRA Mid-Winter Hamfest in St. Charles. It was reported that there were more pieces of equipment for sale including items from an estate. The attendence seemed larger than last year.

A few also attended the Winterfest 2020 in Collinsville, IL (near St. Louis). It was a great hamfest, about the size of Wheaton (WCRA). Lots of “good stuff” on tables along with dealers and vendors including Flex Radio. The ARRL Midwest Conference was held there along with many activities and presentations the day before and day of. Well worth the drive.

Upcoming hamfests:

Cabin Fever Hamfest 2020 sponsored by the La Porte County Amateur Radio Club, February 22nd at the La Porte Civic Auditorium, La Porte, IN.

Sterling Rock Falls 60th Annual Hamfest sponsored by the Sterling Rock Falls Amateur Radio Society, March 8th at the Rock Falls Community Center.

Winter Field Day 2020

Pierre Berube K9EYE and Ken Field KO9H participated in this year’s Winter Field Day with the Schaumburg Amateur Radio Club (SARC). It was estimated that between thirty and forty people participated at that event, which did not run overnight. 

Pierre then continued to operated from his home.

Upcoming MCWA Presentations

Our members have a wealth of knowledge and experience that other members are eager to receive. There are some great programs coming up the first part of the year. Would you consider sharing your knowledge and present a talk at an upcoming meeting later this year? 

    • March 3rd, 2020 – ARRL Update by Kermit Carlson W9XA
    • April 7th, 2020 – Show-and-Tell (tentative)
    • May 5th, 2020 – Building & Testing the SATNOGS Rotor by Mike Pecorini KD2RPE & Ralph Iden WB9ICF
    • June 2nd, 2020 – Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams by Gary Kaatz W9TD
    • July 7th, 2020 – QSLing by John Cankar W9JM

Old Business

Website News

Ralph Iden WB9ICF and Mike Pecorini KD2RPE gave a status report regarding the update to the MCWA website. All outstanding technical tasks have been completed and the site is very close to being launched.

The prototype was shown to those present along with a timeline for the remaining work. The new website is planned for release in the first quarter of this year and is substantially ahead of schedule.

A final review will be made by the Board in the next couple of weeks and site maintenance procedures will be documented. Mike will be out of town for a period of time in February, but he and Ralph will be bringing Ken Farver KB9I up to speed with the new site.

Field Day 2020

Field Day chairperson Ken Field KO9H said that planning for the event has already started and some site scouting is occurring. He wants planning to be a group activity rather than one where everything is laid out for the participants. He is open to new ideas and suggestions for experimental station setups.

Ken asked if the people who would be participating in the MCWA Field Day activity to provide their call while he wrote them down. The exact count wasn’t immediately made available to the Secretary, but a substantial number of people in the room responded.

Planning meetings to discuss FD site, equipment, antennas, modes, classification, number of stations, etc. are going to be held from 6:00-7:30 PM on the 2nd Tuesday of the month at the Panera in Crystal Lake and the 4th Tuesday of the month at the Panera in Fox River Grove.

Watch the Groups.io reflector for more information.

New Business

There was no new business.

Wrap up

An invitation to interested parties to gather later at The Cottage to enjoy eyeball QSOs and 1/2 price pizza was offered.

The evening’s program, “Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network” presented by David Byrne KC9ZVD, Major Michele Heaver KC8NAI, and Robert Langsfeld WB9TZC will follow meeting adjournment.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020 in the Crystal Lake Bank meeting room. Doors open at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by Dan Larson KD9M and seconded by Dean Hettel WD9FOO. The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:45 PM.

Prepared by Ralph Iden WB9ICF, MCWA Secretary