Minutes – November 2021

MCWA Meeting Minutes of November 2, 2021

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the November 2021 meeting to order at 7:03 PM. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Ralph noted that the program will be recorded. Ralph welcomed new members Christopher Burke (N9YH) and Eric Lanzi (WB9JNZ).

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WC9C), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dan Larson (KD9M), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) via Zoom and David Whiteside (N9BSA).

A total of 35 members were in attendance and 1 guest, our speaker for tonight, Ron Delpiere-Smith (KD9IPO).

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the October 2021 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review. Dave Whiteside (N9BSA) motioned to approve the minutes with Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous voice vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for October. MCWA has a membership of 127 full members including 7 family members.

Opening Balance $10,080.05
Deposits $259.22 (dues)
  $250.00 (sale of Drake twins)
Expenditures $0.00-
Interest $0.08
Final Balance $10,589.35

Dean reminded the membership to pay their 2022 dues by PayPal, check or cash tonight at the meeting. A motion to approve the financial report was made by John Kalenowsky (K9JK) with a second by Mike Salak (KC9Q). The motion was approved by unanimous voice vote.


The McHenry monthly Ham breakfast is held the first Saturday of every month at Buddyz, 1138 Green Street, at 8 AM. Contact Dave Whaley (NT9E) for more information.

Hamfest and Event Update




WARAC Midwinter Swapfest, January 9, 2022, Waukesha County Expo Center

WCRA 55th Annual Mid-Winter Hamfest,   January 16, 2022, Kane County Fairgrounds

Winterfest, ARRL Midwest Division Convention, January 27, 2022, Gateway Convention Center, Collinsville, IL

Orlando Hamcation, ARRL National Convention, February 10-13, 2022, Central Florida Fairgrounds & Convention Center, Orlando, FL

Dayton Hamvention 2022, May 20-22, 2022, Greene County Fairgrounds & Expo Center, Xenia, OH

Contest Reports

Illinois QSO Party: Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) participated a little and Jim Mc Donald (N7US) participated using the club call, K9RN.

10-10 Intl. Fall Contest (CW): No reports

Stew Perry Topband Challenge: No reports

CQ WW DX Contest (SSB): No reports


ARRL Sweepstakes Contest (CW) – November 6-8

WAE DX Contest (RTTY) – November 13-14

ARRL Sweepstakes Contest (SSB) – November 20-22

CQ WW DX Contest (CW) – November 27-28

ARRL 160-meter Contest – December 3-5

Upcoming MCWA Presentations

November 2      RF Exposure Calculations
Ron Delpiere-Smith (KD9IPO)

December 7     HamSCI Personal Space Weather project
Bill Engelke (AB4EJ)

January 4         3D Printing for Amateur Radio
Ralph Iden (WB9ICF)

February 1      Antenna Building

Awards and license upgrades

None reported.

Board of Directors Meeting Recap

Ralph reviewed the BOD meeting starting with the health of the club. Membership is strong and stable with meeting attendance lower during the pandemic but recovering. Finances are strong due to revenue from the equipment auction and spending that is well under budget as shown in the difference between budgeted and spent numbers below.

Budget vs Actual (2020-2021)

Item Budgeted Spent
Field Day $750.00 $396.96
Liability Insurance $225.00 $200.00
Domain name renewal $12.00 $12.00
Dinner social $299.00 $0
Outreach $299.00 $0
Zoom Subscription $150.00 $149.90
Website hosting $66.00 $65.28
Misc. $0 $224.24
Totals $1,801.00 $1,048.38

The proposed budget for the coming year is shown below.

Budget (2021-2022)
Item Budgeted Notes
Field Day $750.00 Requires club ratification if over $300
Liability Insurance $225.00
Website (MCWA.org) $115.00 DigitalOcean, Google Domains, Pobox
Picnic / Dinner social $750.00 Requires club ratification if over $300
Outreach $300.00
Zoom Subscription $150.00 Renewed early for a 20% discount
Meeting Room Enhancements $300.00
Misc. $200.00 There will be unbudgeted expenses
Totals $2,790.00

 Other items covered at the BOD meeting included a review of progress on action items from the previous BOD meeting. This included the new meeting space, nominating committee process change, documentation of club roles and processes and an inventory of club property on location of said items.

New business included a discussion of whether to revise the quorum number in the constitution and finding a long term place to store club property.

A program coordinator is still needed since programs are an important part of our monthly meeting. Please contact Ralph (WB9ICF) or Mike (WB8BZK) for more information as to what is involved.

Old Business

The Scout Camporee was a success with over 20 club members participating either at the site or providing contacts for the scouts. Approximately 300 scouts came through the demo. Bill (KD9WEW) provided an introduction to the recap, Gary Dembski (W9GD) discussed the activity at the FT8 station, Dave Holmgren (K9AT) talked about his demo using Morse code and Allstar, Jen Van Zieleghem (KD9FMJ) told a scary story to the scouts at her portable station in the back of her car and Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) talked about the 6 and 2-meter station. David Whiteside (N9BSA), representing the Blackhawk Area Council, Sycamore District of the BSA, presented certificates of thanks to all the participants at the meeting tonight as well as to the MCWA and the 415.

New Business

Ralph presented a slide on possible ideas for the summer picnic. There is an immediate need for an organizing committee to plan it. Ralph will create a survey for the membership’s preferences. It was mentioned that is the distant past, MCWA held a picnic concurrent with Field Day and it was well attended.

As discussed at the BOD meeting, the Board is proposing an amendment to the constitution regarding a change in the determination of a quorum. After the membership has a chance to review the proposal, there will be a vote at the next general meeting. Ralph explained the reason why we have a quorum requirement and the need to change it. He also related what options the board had considered. The proposed amendment is as follows:

ARTICLE VII – Meetings

The Bylaws shall provide for regular and special membership meetings, A minimum for a quorum to conduct club business is one-third one-fifth of the full members in good standing.

Wrap up

Ron Delpiere-Smith (KD9IPO) will be presenting “RF Exposure Calculations” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, December 7, 2021 at the Algonquin Township meeting room. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM. The program is “Personal Space Weather Station project” by Bill Engelke (AB4EJ).

A motion to adjourn was made by John Kalenowsky (K9JK) and seconded by Bill Wacaser (KD9WEW). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:47 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.