Minutes – August 2023

MCWA Meeting Minutes of August 1, 2023

President Dan Larson (KD9M) called the August 2023 hybrid meeting (in-person and by Zoom) to order at 7:00 PM. Dan noted that the program may be recorded. The Pledge of Allegiance followed, led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Dan then asked everyone to introduce themselves.

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

A total of 40 members were in attendance and 4 guests: Our speaker for tonight, Ed Picha (N9EP), Richard Kittredge (KB9EJZ), Paul Anderson (KD9YNR) and Gil Etheridge.

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the June 2023 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review. Roger Scott (KF9D) moved to accept the minutes and John Cankar (W9JM) 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 June, July and the May interest. MCWA has a membership of 133 full members including 11 family members and no Associate members.

Opening Balance $11,954.43
Deposits $128.00 ($70.00 Dues, $50.00 misc.)
Expenditures $527.62- ($13.06 Digital Ocean, $406.56 Ralph Iden – Maker Faire receivers, $108.00 Domain renewal)
Interest $0.31 (May, June & July)
Final Balance $11,555.12

Dean reminded the membership to pay their 2023 dues by PayPal, check or cash tonight at the meeting. Nick Bebout (W9NB) moved to accept the treasurer’s report and Erich Kramer (KC9CUK) seconded the motion. Hearing no objections, the treasurer’s report was approved.


The next VEC testing will be on August 15.

The monthly McHenry Ham Breakfast is held the first Saturday of every month at Buddyz in McHenry at 8:00 AM. The next will be August 5th. Contact Dave (K9AT) for more information.

John Cankar (W9JM) reported on the TREK 100 held on June 10. There were over 1800 riders and more than $1,118,000 was raised for the MACC Fund. He noted that tere was 219 miles of course to patrol by SAG vehicles. He thanked those MCWA members who helped. The next Trek 100 will be on June 8, 2024.

Dan Larson (KD9M) reported on the MCWA Field Day events and results. It was estimated that we scored about 8524 points the exact value is unknown due to differences in reports. He also noted that the GOTA tent blew away during the overnight storms and the stations were idle for a number of hours due to lightning.

Dan noted that Bob Heil (K9EID) was having health issues. He also reminded the membership that next month is the 45th anniversary of MCWA. We will have cake and pictures will be taken.

Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) reported on the “415” Field Day events and results. He noted that the 415 does not compete with MCWA as they operate 3A. He reported that 19 licensed hams participated and an estimated 6328 points were earned. Sam also reported that five hours of operating were lost due to the overnight storms and lightning.

Gary Dembski (W9GD) commented on an email that he and Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) received from Director Kent Dulaney (K9KMD) before Field Day. The gist of the letter was complaining about the use of the MCWA email reflector to solicit participation in a different Field Day activity than MCWA’s. Gary then spoke at length about his ham saga and about new ideas not being accepted by the “old timers”. He said that they formed the 415 club in order to get a call sign to be used on Field Day.

Hamfest and Event Update


Six Meter Club of Chicago Hamfest – Cancelled

South Milwaukee ARC Swapfest: W9JM, W9TD, K9EYE and others attended. It rained.

Karsfest: no reports


Elkhart East Hamfest, August 5, Elkhart, IN

Riverland ARC Swapfest, August 5, LA Crosse, WI

Hamfesters 88th Annual Hamfset, August 6, Peotone, IL

Circus City Swapfest, August 26, Baraboo, WI

ORC Annual Regional Fall Sawpfset, September 9, Cedarburg, WI

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

HRO Milwaukee Superfest and ARRL Central Division Convention, September 23, HRO Milwaukee, WI

Radio Expo, September 24, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL

Contest Reports

ARRL June VHF Contest: no reports

 ARRL Kids Day: no reports

 Stew Perry Topband Challenge: no reports

 ARRL Field Day: reported above

 13 Colonies Special Event: a number of members participated

 CQ WW VHF Contest: no reports

 NAQP – RTTY: no reports

Lewis & Clark Special Event: a number of members participated

 VOTA, all year long: no reports


ARRL 222 MHz and Up Distance Contest, August 5-6

NAQP – CW, August 5-6

WAE DX Contest – CW, August 12-13

ARRL EME Contest, August 12-13

ARRL 10GHz and Up Contest, August 19-20

NAQP – SSB, August 19-20

ARRL Rookie Roundup – RTTY, August 20

World Wide Digi DX Contest, August 26-27

VOTA, all year long

Upcoming MCWA Presentations

September 5 – TBD

Future – Pico Balloons and Youth in Ham Radio by the Northern Illinois Bottlecap Balloon Brigade

Awards and license upgrades

A number of members got Clean Sweep certificates for the 13 Colonies Special Event.

Old Business

 Dan reported that work is being done on the MCWA website to update it.

Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) asked if anything had been done about investing the club’s excess funds in a CD. Dan said no, because we do not have a tax ID.

New Business

Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) reported on the Nominating Committee’s (WB9ICF, K9KMD and N9BSA) activity. Currently, Dan Larson (KD9M) has indicated he will be willing to continue as President and that Glenn Otto (K9OK) and Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) have agreed to run for the open director position currently held by David Whiteside (N9BSA). At the September meeting, the committee will be presenting the slate of one director and all four officers for the vote at the November meeting.

Wrap up

Following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting, Ed Picha (N9EP) will be presenting, “EME”.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, September 5, 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 is TBD. A motion to adjourn was made by Sam Haldiman (KC9GPY) and seconded by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 8:33 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.