Call for Speakers: ARRL Learning Network

We are readying an initiative named the ARRL Learning Network — a series of webinars presented by member-volunteers, for members. Like hamfest forums and radio club presentations, these webinars are intended to help members get more active, involved, and engaged in amateur radio. Recorded presentations will also respond to regular requests from our affiliated radio clubs for quality programming, particularly clubs that lack ready access to presenters, or have a last-minute speaker cancellation. Our current plan is to begin scheduling speakers for webinars as early as mid- to late-July. We need your help…

Below is a Call for Speakers invitation (or download this PDF) which we’d like you to share with prospective presenters in your Section. We are asking your help to share this invitation with members you know who are dynamic, knowledgeable, and experienced speakers. Please consider speakers and presenters from throughout the clubs and hamfests in your Section. Add a short, personal invitation.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you for all the ways you help extend the reach and effectiveness of ARRL programs and services. 73 Bob NQ1R

Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R – Product Development Manager
ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio®
225 Main Street, Newington, CT 06111-1400 USA
Tel: (860) 594-0213 FAX: (860) 594-0303

ARRL logo

PART of Westford 2020 Field Day Awards

PART of Westford logoPART of Westford will hold a fun competition to recognize members who operated in the 2020 Field Day and who finish first in several categories:

  • Highest number of contacts (subcategories: overall, CW, Phone, Digital, VHF/UHF)
  • Highest score
  • Highest score by a Technician
  • Farthest DX
  • “Home Run”–at least one contact on each mode (SSB, CW, digital, and VHF-FM simplex)

Club president George Allison, K1IG, asks applicants to email him once they receive confirmation from ARRL Headquarters that their logs have been received. He adds, “this is all on the honor system.” 

Winners will be announced at the August PART meeting.


Severe Weather & Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend Coordination Message #5

SKYWARN logoThe following is the fifth and final message in a series of messages on Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend and providing information on the weather during this period. This is a tradition spanning over 17 years for Amateur Radio Operators involved with Field Day and the NWS Boston/Norton SKYWARN Program.
After the Saturday afternoon and early evening beneficial rain of around 0.10″-0.90″ around the area with lesser amounts in parts of Northeast Massachusetts, Sunday will feature a warm and humid day with the potential for isolated to scattered strong to severe thunderstorms across the region. The most likely timeframe is from 3-9 PM but some activity could start as early as 12-1 PM Sunday. [Full story]

Severe Weather & Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend Coordination Message #4

SKYWARN logoThe following is the fourth in a series of messages on Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend and providing information on the weather during this period. This is a tradition spanning over 17 years for Amateur Radio Operators involved with Field Day and the NWS Boston/Norton SKYWARN Program.
After the afternoon and early evening beneficial rain of around 0.10″-0.90″ around the area with lesser amounts in parts of Northeast Massachusetts, clearing will occur and result in a hazy, warm, humid day on Sunday with the risk of isolated to scattered strong to severe thunderstorms for Sunday Afternoon and Evening. The most likely timeframe is from 3-9 PM but some activity could start as early as 12-1 PM Sunday.

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has placed much of New England in a marginal risk for severe weather for Sunday afternoon and evening. Strong to damaging winds, hail, and torrential rainfall leading to urban and poor drainage flooding are the main threats. Model trends indicate a greater potential for severe weather on Sunday than today with strong instability, forcing from a cold front and marginally sufficient wind fields. [Full story]

Severe Weather & Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend Coordination Message #3

SKYWARN logoThe following is the third in a series of messages on Amateur Radio Field Day Weekend and providing information on the weather during this period. This is a tradition spanning over 17 years for Amateur Radio Operators involved with Field Day and the NWS Boston/Norton SKYWARN Program.
2020 Field Day weekend will mostly be dry but has potential shower and thunderstorm risks in isolated to scattered locations each day including the threat for isolated to scattered strong to severe thunderstorms and becoming hot and humid Saturday and Sunday.
The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has continued much of Southern New England in a Marginal Risk for Severe Weather. The Slight risk area has been shifted southwest of the NWS Norton coverage area. Doppler Radar at 1115 AM shows an area of rain and possible embedded thunderstorms that poses little severe risk. It will then become warmer and more humid late Saturday Afternoon and evening. Clearing behind this area of rain will determine the risk for any severe weather Saturday. If clearing and heating can develop and the warm front pass far enough north, there would be the potential for strong to severe thunderstorms with strong to damaging winds, hail and torrential rainfall leading to urban and poor drainage flooding as the main threats but a secondary threat for an isolated tornado as well. That said, the risk for today seems a bit lower than yesterday based on model trends and the timing of the current area of rain but still be monitored. [Full story]

Billerica ARS VE Team to Resume In-Person Sessions, July 9, 2020

photo of multiple choice examThe Billerica Amateur Radio Society‘s ARRL-Affiliated Volunteer Exam (VE) team will resume in-person testing sessions beginning July 9, 2020 at the Chelmsford Bible Church, 128 Gorham Street, in Chelmsford. No walk-ins are allowed; applicants must call or email in advance. 

To register, contact Gary Frascarelli, W1GFF, at w1gff -at- arrl -dot- net or call 978-453-1100. 

Gary Frascarelli, W1GFF, writes on the Billerica ARS Facebook page on July 5, 2020:


“There will be NO VE Session in July…”


Scattered Strong to Severe Storms Possible on Field Day Weekend, June 27-28, 2020

SKYWARN logoRob Macedo, KD1CY, writes:
Need to keep an eye on the severe weather potential for the entire timeframe of Field Day Weekend but especially the Saturday Afternoon/Evening timeframe and the Sunday Afternoon/evening timeframe. While we don’t have many “traditional” Field Day sites setup, there are a few and also those that have home station field setups that will want to monitor the severe weather potential. I’ll be updating the Amateur Radio Field Day/Severe Weather Coordination Message in the next couple of hours. I’ve elected to copy EMA ARRL Staff for their awareness as well.
Rob M.
———- Forwarded message ———
From: BOX Operations – NOAA Service Account <>
Date: Fri, Jun 26, 2020 at 2:31 PM
Subject: [2020-06-26 PM] NWS Boston EM Briefing – Scattered Strong to Severe Storms Possible This Weekend
Good afternoon everyone, 
Severe thunderstorms are possible Saturday and Sunday across parts of Southern New England. With the weekend ahead of us, we wanted to get this heads-up e-mail out early for your awareness.
Rain during the first part of the day gives way to thunderstorms in the afternoon and early evening.
Timing: Mid-afternoon to early Saturday evening.
Locations: Possible anywhere, but the best chance is near and south of the Massachusetts Turnpike/I-90. 
Severe Thunderstorm Threats: Primarily damaging straight-line winds and hail up to 1″ in diameter. While the overall risk is very low, an isolated tornado is possible.
Confidence: Moderate. How much Southern New England can warm up will greatly impact the severe thunderstorm potential.
The severe thunderstorm outlook for Saturday from the Storm Prediction Center is highlighted below:
New England weather map prediction for June 27, 2020
A few severe thunderstorms are possible later in the day Sunday ahead of a cold front.
Timing: Best chance is late-afternoon to mid-evening Sunday; isolated storms possible between early to mid-afternoon.
Locations: Possible anywhere, but the best chance is western and central Massachusetts, northern Rhode Island and much of northern Connecticut.
Severe Thunderstorm Threats: Damaging straight-line winds and hail up to 1″ in diameter.
Confidence: Moderate. Isolated strong/severe storms could be possible before late in the day but the best chance is with the cold front arriving later in the day into mid-evening.
The severe thunderstorm outlook for Sunday is highlighted below:
New England weather prediction map for June 28, 2020
Thank You!
Meteorologists Andrew Loconto and Rodney Chai

If you have any questions or would like more information, don’t hesitate to contact us via this email address, on NWSChat, or at the following:

National Weather Service Boston/Norton, MA
46 Commerce Way

Norton, MA 02766


National Zoom Meeting: Winlink Express for EmComm, June 25, 2020

Please join the Thursday, June 25, 2020 ARES ZOOM meeting at 0100Z – Zoom info shown below. 

9:00 PM AST / 9:00 PM EDT / 8:00 PM CT / 7:00 PM MDT / 6:00 PM PDT / 5:00 PM AKDT / 3:00 PM HST

Topic: Winlink Express for EmComm, from the Winlink Development Team

Speaker:  Phil Sherrod, W4PHS

Phil is a career software developer, a member of the Winlink Development Team and BOD member of ARSFI.

His work on the Winlink team involves developing and supporting the Winlink Express client program, and the programs used by RMS (Trimode, RMS Relay, RMS Packet).  Phil is the designer of the Winlink Hybrid Network System.

This Zoom meeting is intended for ARRL section emergency coordinators, section managers, district directors, vice directors, and others involved with disaster communications. 

June 26, 2020 UPDATE:


Click on the following link to view Thursday June 25  Zoom meeting.

Click on the below link if you choose to download this video instead.

Click on the below link to download Thursday’s Winlink presentation by Phil Sherrod, W4PHS


Please note:  This Zoom session on Winlink exceeded our Zoom 500 participant limitation quickly, leaving many without access.  Please forward this email to make sure everyone that wants to view it, gets a copy. 

“Taunton Amateur Radio Enthusiast Still Hamming It Up After Nearly 60 years”

photo of Ted Figlock, KA1ATTTaunton amateur Ted Figlock, KA1AAT, was the subject of a nice feature story in the June 24, 2020 edition of the Taunton Gazette:

TAUNTON – Dr. Thadeus “Ted” Figlock has been a world traveler for the better part of six decades.

And he’s done most of it from a sitting position.

The 85-year-old, former obstetrician and gynecologist, who unpretentiously describes his medical career as having consisted mainly of “delivering babies and cutting out tumors,” has had a difficult year.

Figlock says he suffered a stroke last February, on Ash Wednesday to be exact, that hit him “like a ton of bricks.” He says he also suffers from the lung disease known as pulmonary fibrosis.

Despite those maladies the Hudson, Pennsylvania, native continues to keep active as an amateur radio operator.

“You do it for the fun of it,” Figlock said during an interview in the backyard of his Winthrop Street home.

“It’s like fishing,” he said. “We go out fishing for people who want to talk to us. It’s a sport.”

Figlock didn’t stop working as a doctor after he closed his practice. He says he worked a while at both the Jamaica Plain VA Medical Center and at a medical marijuana facility in Fall River.

His enthusiasm as an amateur radio operator, or ham, has not wavered, despite adjustments to his routine stemming from his medical challenges.

Figlock used to spend solitary time on his ham radio in a small room of his basement. He no longer ventures down the stairs and instead uses a second setup located on the main floor of his house, which is equipped with two antennas.

He’s also gone mobile. It’s not often that you’ll catch Figlock without his trusty portable, handheld transceiver, otherwise known as his ham-radio walkie talkie. [Full story]

Billerica ARS Saturday Morning Breakfasts Going “Virtual”

Bruce Anderson, W1LUS, writes on the Billerica ARS mailing list:

The BARS regular Saturday morning breakfast was canceled due to the virus. We are now trying a Saturday morning Zoom gathering. You are invited to this Saturday’s Zoom gathering. Join anytime between 8 AM and 9:30 AM. Leave whenever you want. There is no preplanned discussion topic. Feel free to bring up any Amateur radio subject that you would like to talk about.

BARS Saturday Morning Gathering
Time: Jun 27, 2020 08:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting […] [Contact Bruce Anderson, W1LUS at w1lus -at- hotmail -dot- com for conference details]

Field Day Listings on

Bill Ricker, N1VUX, writes:

I have created a non-place Site for FD@Home cumulative scoring in the FD Directory  (geographic coordinates in Boston Harbor but not on an island; county=mixed, same as “Nowhere”; it will get the Harbor forecast, oops).

It currently shows these clubs:
Middlesex/Zola and MITLL are listed because they’re tied to the club they went with last year; i maybe should break those links. :-/
WARS and K1USN seemed to be discussing, but i don’t feel we had them confirmed.
Sites I’m still carrying as MAYBE operational in the field
ClubKey   SiteKey
NARC      1B9    
AARC      8MA4    
Crow      8MA4    
WARS      NeedWMPk
PilAWA    SwanFD  
  • Only AARC/Crow have been heard from discussing lately.
  • CAARA website says FD is still on, but No COVID-19 precautions noted, so suspected stale.
    (FB has no posts since October!) Lists
  • NSRA says NO FD. Do they have FD@Home plans?
  • K1USN having Zoom meeting 6/23 to discuss FD. presume FD@home. Site closed per website.
  • Sturdy FD@Home confirmed from minutes; 
    minutes also reports Will N1DPY/SK (Cancer) May 2d or 3d
    Nice new website!
  • Whitman – FD not on Calendar. Common scoring in minutes, so confirmed.
  • WARS – Wellesley had an eMeeting to discuss FD last week. Decision?
  • Pilgrim AWA – i presume they don’t have their site, but are they doing FD@Home or ??
  • NARC could use their locked airport bunker, i suppose, so IDK, maybe, don’t care.
Sites carried as CONFIRMED and not FD@Home
ClubKey       SiteKey        Locator  Highlight          
NEARC         4thCliff       true     non-public 2020    
BEMA          BEMALake       true     kc1kwc            
NVARC         PepperellOrch  true     reduced            
ng0at         ema            true     CT club on cape    
SEMARA        wa1bxy         false    3D/3E              
QRA           wa1qzk         true     2020 3E            
MiddletonEMA  wa1qzk         false    2020 3E            
n1wm          wma            true     NoBARC Windsor MA  
w1ddd         wma            true     BlackstoneVARC@NA1Q
Total: 9   
  • NEARC @ Fourth Cliff – campground is CLOSED but caretaker in residence so they’re rolling.
  • Braintree EMA put a pin on the map recently, so they’re on at their alternate control point on the lake.
  • NG0AT, N1WM, W1DDD are non-mapping entries, to reconcile HQ Locator count.
  • Ron’s QRA/M’ton EMA 3E home op we got emails on, and is on HQ Locator.
  • NVARC has pin on HQ Locator. They spoke about having a small setup in Orchard plus FD@Home ? Are both still on?
  • MARC/Zola – their mailing list discusses the audio recordings of their eMeeting but not minutes. And one or more silent keys.


New England Sci-Tech Offers Three On-line Technician Class Courses in July, 2020

New England Sci Tech logoFor anyone interested in wireless communications and electronics, this ON-LINE course will get you ready to take the Amateur Radio TECHNICIAN license exam, the FIRST of three certification levels. Geared toward adults, as well as junior high, high school, and homeschool students.

Topics range from the science of radio electronics to the FCC rules governing the radio spectrum. Some pre-test practice is necessary to get the best results from this course.

This is a FULL course taught by a 40-yr veteran teacher, not a discussion group or video service. You will learn so much more than just watching a video or buying a book.

Current offerings:

  • 4 day course: Tu-W-Th-Fri July 7-10, 3-6 pm each day Eastern Time *
  • 2 day course: SAT-SUN July 11-12, noon-6 pm each day Eastern Time *
  • 4 day course: Tu-W-Th-Fri July 14-17, 3-6 pm each day Eastern Time *

* July courses are specially tailored for kids and families

The FCC Technician test will be scheduled for an upcoming weekday evening or weekend, as an online test, run by our VE team which has authorization to run online tests.

System Requirements: Computer or Chromebook capable of running ZOOM Meeting, either by Zoom app or through a browser, a built-in camera/mic, and a color printer.

Included with course fee: downloadable lecture study guide and charts, free access to our weekly Online Radio Shop Talk sessions, and a guest pass to the NEAR/STARS Radio Rooms and radio club meetings for 3 months once the facility reopens.

Note that the standard $15 license test fee is NOT included and must be registered separately; our VE team is authorized to give ONLINE exams, so you can schedule an exam within a week of the course. (Price is $15 across the country.)

An additional member of the same family may join this course at no extra charge, if sharing one computer and zoom screen.

A few hours before the session you will receive an email with a Zoom link and ID. If you don’t see the email, check your spam filter. If you still don’t see it, call 508-720-4179 for help.

For questions, e-mail bobphinney at or call 508-720-4179.

New England Sci-Tech General Course, Natick, July 25-26, 2020

New England Sci Tech logoFor junior high and high school students, homeschool students, and adults who already have a Technician level license, this fast-paced, two-day course will get you ready to take the GENERAL license exam. Topics range from the science of radio electronics to the FCC rules governing the radio spectrum.  Some preliminary reading may be helpful to get the best results from this course. Material will be sent approximately a week before the course.

The GENERAL level course runs Saturday, 8:30 am to 5 pm and Sunday, 8:30 am to noon, followed by the FCC General exam at noon, at New England Sci-Tech, 16 Tech Circle, Natick.

Included with course fee: printed handouts, lecture study guide, license fee if tested at our location, a guest pass to the NEAR/STARS Radio Room and radio club meetings for 2 months, and free coffee, tea, or hot chocolate during the course. Up to two members of the same family may take this course for the price of one. Please let me know if there will be two of you attending.

For questions, e-mail bobphinney at or call 508-720-4179.

13 Colonies Event Week, July 1-7, 2020

13 Colonies sample certificateBob Kelley, K1KVV, writes on the Southeastern MA ARA web site:

13 Colonies Event Week

July 1, 9AM to July 7, Midnight, EDT
(1300Z 1 July 2020 to 0400Z 8 July 2020)

Certificate: Only one 13 Colonies QSO gets you a certificate.

For a CLEAN SWEEP, you don’t need to work the Bonus Stations, WM3PEN & GB13COL.
[D-STAR is OK for Bonus Stations]

Working a Colony Station: use DX Summit to find 13 Colonies S/E station.

Spotting: after working a colony station, you are encouraged to spot it on DX Summit: i.e., “K2H 13 Col MA.”
Questions? See KU2US

On This Date in 1840: Samuel Morse Receives Patent for “Morse code” System

Samuel MorseOn this date in 1840, Samuel Morse received a patent for his “Morse code” system. Morse was a painter, originally. He also studied photography with Louis Daguerre in France, and brought the new technology to America, where he opened a photographic studio in New York City. He became interested in telegraphy after he failed in his bid to become the mayor of New York. During a demonstration of one of his early telegraph machines, he met Alfred Vail, a young mechanical engineer. Vail was fascinated by the telegraph, and he convinced Morse to bring him aboard as an assistant. Vail helped Morse work out some problems with Morse’s original system, and it didn’t hurt that Vail’s father was a wealthy industrialist. Vail put up the money to pay the patent application fees in exchange for a share in whatever resulted.

The telegraph works by sending an electromagnetic signal over a wire. Morse had an idea that the current could be used to move a pencil along a moving strip of paper, but Vail simplified it by suggesting a cheaper and more practical alternative: an arm that would bounce up and down. The pair then had to devise a way to convert a tapping arm into a system of language. It was actually Vail, not Morse, who came up with the first dot-and-dash system, with each letter and number being made up of a different combination of long and short sounds or flashes. Vail’s first message using his code was, “A patient waiter is no loser.” But Morse was the better known of the two inventors, and it was his name on the patents, and that’s why we call it “Morse Code” and not “Vail Code.” -From Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac, June 20, 2020.

Web Site Changes

Eastern MA ARRL logoSome minor structural changes were made this weekend to the web site.

The “Government” menu and category have been renamed to “Regulation & Advocacy” duplicating the ARRL Hq. web site references. Also, the “Field Day” menu item is now in alphabetical order. (It used to be last on the menu because it was the newest created item.)

Your webmaster has added a “font size” widget (three capital “A” letters of increasing font size) in the upper right corner.  (I like the flexibility of changing font size via the plug-in instead of messing with my computer settings.)

Finally, the “share to social media” plug-in was replaced with a better version.  The icons appear at the bottom of each story. It’s now easier than ever to share an story to Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, LinkedIn, etc.

K1USN Radio Club On-line Meeting, June 23, 2020

“Pi” Pugh, K1RV, writes on the K1USN RC mailing list:
Our discussion topic on Tuesday, June 23rd @ 7:30 PM will be 2020 ARRL Field Day plans.
We want to hear from you to learn what you expect to do for the 2020 ARRL Field Day. Obviously there are extenuating circumstances this year due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The recent K1USN Zoom session presentation by Bruce – K1BG about his past one person Field Day operation may have given you some ideas on how you might operate.
Do you plan to get on the air during the weekend of June 27 – 28 for Field Day 2020? If so, what class to you intend to operate? What modes will you operate? Will you use computer logging/ If so, which software?
Let’s have a lively discussion so that perhaps you might give others some ideas about what direction to choose. I suspect that I may choose to operate 1D class from my home station using N1MM+ logging software using K1RV.
I am also considering the possibility of using my KX3 on battery power into a Buddipole Vertical using N1MM+ logging software from my back patio for a few hours during the day as K1USN.
Here is the ARRL Field Day rules page –

Zola Center ARC On-line Meeting-Presentations, June 20, 2020

The next meeting of the Zola amateur radio group will be held on Saturday, June 20, 2020 beginning at 11AM EDT. The meeting will be held entirely on a Zoom tele-conference. There will be no in-person component. Please see the call in/sign in information below my signature. This month’s agenda:

11 AM – Come to order and introductions

11:05 AM – Announcements and questions

11:15 AM –

Ms. Donna Suskawicz is a founding member of the Zola Amateur Radio Group. Without her vision, dedication, and generosity there would not be such an organization. She will give us a presentation about the history and mission of our organization. Donna is a real inspiration for us, and we look forward to a very informative presentation.

12 Noon –

Mr. Rob Santello is an inventor and engineer. He designs and produces a product known as a Ham Pod. The Ham Pod device communicates through serial protocols to a variety of amateur radio rigs, rotor controllers, and meters. It features an interactive keypad and voice output. Rob will tell us about the history of his invention and the myriad of uses it has.

12:45 PM – New business and topics for the good of our community.

1:30 PM – Adjourn



Frank Ventura, N1FMV

[Ed: Contact N1FMV for Zoom conference meeting details]