Minutes – April 2023

MCWA Meeting Minutes of April 4, 2023


President Dan Larson (KD9M) called the April 2023 hybrid meeting (in-person and by Zoom) to order at 7:02 PM. Dan noted that the program may be recorded. The Pledge of Allegiance followed, led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Dan asked for a minute of silence for a silent key; Paul Graham (K9ERG). He then welcomed new member Matthew Redding (W9QF). Dan then asked everyone to introduce themselves.

Board members present were Dean Hettel (WC9C), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dan Larson (KD9M) and David Whiteside (N9BSA).

A total of 39 members were in attendance and 2 guests; Angelo Cuisnato and Bob Comes.

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the March 2023 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review. John Kalenowsky (K9JK) moved to accept the minutes and John Dewey (KA9CAR) seconded the motion. Hearing no objections, the minutes were approved.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for December. MCWA has a membership of 140 full members including 11 family members and no Associate members.

Opening Balance $11,069.40
Deposits $140.00 (Dues)
Expenditures $6.53- (Digital Ocean)
Interest $0.10
Final Balance $11,202.97

Dean reminded the membership to pay their 2023 dues by PayPal, check or cash tonight at the meeting. John Dewey (KA9CAR) moved to accept the treasurer’s report and Pierre Berube (K9EYE) seconded the motion. Hearing no objections, the treasurer’s report was approved.


The monthly McHenry Ham Breakfast is held the first Saturday of every month at Buddyz in McHenry at 8:00 AM, in a private room. Contact Dave (K9AT) for more information.

Seth McCallister (KD9TAW) will be operating from the British Virgin Islands as VP2V/KD9TAW from April 7-16.

Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) spoke about participation in the upcoming Lake County Maker Faire on April 15th. The theme is “The Mystique of Shortwave Radio”. He will be offering a 40-meter direct conversion kit for purchase by the attendees, price TBD. Ralph said that it has attracted the ARRL’s attention as the Central Division Director, Carl Luetzelschwab (K9LA) and his wife Vicky (AE9YL), will be attending. Ralph’s expenditures for 25 kits was $375. John Dewey (KA9CAR) made a motion to reimburse Ralph up to $450. David Whiteside (N9BSA)seconded the motion and it passed unanimously.

Gary Kaatz (W9TD) made a short presentation commemorating the 50 year anniversary of the “first” cellular phone call.

MCWA Field Day 2023 will be at Rush Creek June 24-25. We plan on operation class 2A with GOTA, CW, SSB + Digital, VHF and Satellite. The GOTA station is for anyone new to the hobby, coming back to the hobby or inactive on HF. The next planning meeting will be on April 18. Wendell Smith (N9REP) will be the food chairperson and he asked for some help from the membership to do things like grocery purchasing and assistance at Field Day so that he will be able to do some operating. Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) talked about other groups that will be participating in Field Day and Field Day in general. He invited everyone to visit more than one site.

Hamfest and Event Update


Jefferson Hamfest 2023: W9JM attended

Sterling Rock Falls ARS Hamfest: no reports

QSO Today Virtual Ham Radio Expo: W9TD attended


Madison Area Repeater Assn Hamfest, April 15, Stoughton, WI

ORC 43rd Annual Spring Indoor Swapfest, May 6, Cedarburg, WI

DeKalb Hamfest, May 7, Sandwich, IL

Hamvention 2023, May 19-21, Greene County Fair & Expo Center, Xenia, OH

Starved Rock Radio Club Hamfest, June 4, Mendota Tri-County Fairgrounds

Six Meter Club of Chicago Hamfest, June 11, DuPage County Fairgrounds
Ron (KD9IPO) and John (K9JK) have advance tickets

South Milwaukee ARC Swapfest, July 9, American Legion Post #434, Oak Creek, WI

Karsfest, July 16, Northern Indiana Event Center, Elkhart, IN

Peoria Superfest, September 16-17, Three Sisters Park, Chillicothe, IL

Radio Expo, September ?, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL

Contest Reports

North American RTTY Sprint: no reports

 Stew Perry Topband Challenge: no reports

 Idaho and Oklahoma QSO Parties: no reports

 Wisconsin QSO Party: no reports

 CQ Worldwide WPX Contest (SSB): no reports, but K9JK said that more than 7500 logs have been submitted and they were making LotW very slow.

ARRL VOTA year-long event: continuing


NCCC RTTY Sprints, Fridays

UHF/VHF FT8 Activity Contest, April 5

IG-RY World Wide RTTY Contest, April 8-9

Michigan QSO Party, April 15-16

10-10 Intl Spring Contest (digital), April 29-30

Indiana QSO Party, May 6-7

Upcoming MCWA Presentations

May 2, W9LRG Remote Shack

Awards and license upgrades

Bob Temes (KD9IDD) upgraded to Extra. Sean Park got a new call: K9SJP. Angelo Cuisnato passed his exam on April 1.

Old Business


New Business

The July meeting would fall on the 4th, Dan suggested we skip that meeting and resume in August. There were no objections.

A drawing was held for two tickets to the Six Meter Club of Chicago Hamfest. The winners were Angelo Cuisnato and Ralph Iden (WB9ICF).

Wrap up

Following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting, Dan Larson (KD9M) will be presenting the “Vertical Antennas”. Dan solicited more presentations from the membership.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, May 2, 2023 at the Algonquin Township meeting room. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM. The program will be the W9LRG Remote Shack. A motion to adjourn was made by John Cankar (W9JM) and seconded by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:55 PM.

Wendell Smith (N9REP) brought up another public service event, the McHenry County Century Ride to be held on May 28 in Lake in the Hills. He says that 300-400 bikers are expected and is looking for volunteers to help.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.