March 2012 Section News


Section Manager (SM) - Phil Temples, K9HI 
Assistant Section Manager (ASM) – Jeremy Breef-Pilz, KB1REQ 
Affiliated Club Coordinator (ACC) - "Bo" Budinger, WA1QYM 
Official Observer Coordinator (OOC) - Ed Parish, K1EP 
Public Information Coordinator (PIC) - Bob Salow, WA1IDA 
Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) - Rob Macedo, KD1CY 
Section Traffic Manager (STM) – Marcia Forde, KW1U 
State Government Liaison (SGL) - Shawn O'Donnell, K3HI 
Technical Coordinator (TC) - Eric Falkof, K1NUN  


The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) has implemented a
new Auxiliary Communications System (ACS) to operate MEMA's radio
system. ACS will replace the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service
(RACES) as the primary communications organization serving MEMA. Acting
State RACES Officer Mike Neilsen, W1MPN, outlined the changes at a
statewide meeting in Sutton, MA on Feb. 25, 2012.

While MEMA relies primarily on the Web-based WEB EOC system for
reporting and communications, ACS volunteers will operate MEMA's backup
radio network that operates on non-amateur frequencies. The volunteers
will not be required to hold Amateur Radio licenses. 

Amateur Radio will continue to play an important part in disaster
intelligence gathering through its SKYWARN program and MEMA has asked
Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) leadership to help develop the
new ACS program, criteria and training for delivering damage reports
from the local cities and towns to MEMA. 

Regional EMA headquarters will continue to operate, and RACES
operations will continue in the cities and towns that support the
Plymouth, Seabrook and Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant Evacuation
Plans. According to Neilsen, "these same RACES operators will likely
continue to be involved with ACS at the local town and city level in
other disaster related scenarios at the discretion of the Emergency
Management Agency Director." –Thanks, W1MPN & Whitman ARC

The Genesis ARS in Plymouth is conducting an Amateur Radio license
class on March 9-10, and 17, according to GARS' KA1GDQ. If you are
interested, please contact Joe at <> or Chris, N1IR at

Marathon Amateur Radio Communications, a consortium of amateurs from
the Framingham ARA, Minuteman Repeater Association and other groups, is
looking to fill a few remaining positions for communications for the
116th Boston Marathon on April 16. To volunteer, visit

The Cape Ann ARA is working with the Gloucester Emergency Management
Agency to obtain a utility trailer. CAARA will use it to store Field
day supplies and other items.

TC Eric Falkof, K1NUN's presentation on "stealth antennas" at the PART
of Westford's Feb. 21 meeting was well received.

As reported in last month's Section News column, the Framingham ARC
flea market will be held on March 25. See <> for
more info.

Mark your calendars for the Spring 2012 NEAR-Fest in Deerfield, NH on
May 4-5, 2012. Details can be found at <>.

Pilgrim ARC's repeater in Truro is experiencing intermittent noise
problems. PARC president WA1KYU says a tower climb and inspection of a
jumper cable that connects the antenna and hard line is planned for the
near future. 

According to Southeastern MA ARA's N1IXC, applications for the club's
scholarship are currently being solicited. 

Special event station W1S will operate May 11-12, 1300-2300 UTC from
the annual Steampunk City Festival in Waltham. Frequency: 14.280 MHz.
QSL or certificate with SASE to Bill McIninch, KA1MOM at his QRZ.COM
address. Bill is seeking General class operators and higher, and
loggers (any class) to help with the operation.

KB1KVL would like to announce the new "FMers Ragchew Net" which meets
each Thursday night at 8 PM on 29.680 MHz. 

The Boston ARC is looking for hams for the Multiple Sclerosis Society's
MS Walk on April 1 in Boston. Contact <> if you can

New FCC rules for the Amateur Radio 60-meter band go into effect on
March 5, 2012. See <>. 

The South Shore Hospital ARC will provide communications support for
road races on St. Patrick's Day, March 17. If you can help, drop an
email to <>.

John Thompson, W1BIH/PJ9JT, of Plymouth, a lifetime ARRL member and a
CQ Contest Hall of Famer, will be celebrating his 97th birthday in
March.  John is in a nursing home and the latest news is that he is not
doing very well. Please take a minute and write John to wish him a happy
birthday to his address. A short note in very large type or
print would be best, as his eyesight is not so good. 

Congrats are in order to the Nashoba Valley ARC -- 20 years young in
April 2012!

The Antique Radio flea market in Westford on Feb. 19 attracted
approximately 70 vendors and 400 buyers. W1EKT was among those who
helped to organize the flea.

On the lighter side: this cute YouTube video of the cartoon character
Dilbert as a child, who grows up to become a ham and an engineer:

From the "Oooo-kay-department": An Austrian professor has built
something he calls a Tworse Key that allows you to post to Twitter
using Morse code. To learn how to make your own tweeting telegraph key,
visit <>.

WB1HGA passes along this interesting historical trivia (from 73
Magazine, Sept. 1988): The numerals 88 and 73 have been a tradition in
communication languages for almost 130 years. The older of the two, 73,
appeared in 1853 meaning "My love to you." In 1857, the first official
definition made it a "fraternal greeting between operators." Two years
later, Western Union made 73 a part of their "92 code" to indicate
"Accept my compliments." The final change came in 1895, when 73 meant
"Best Regards" for the telegraph and later, for radio operators. 88
never received the formality of an official listing until it was
adopted as one of the ham abbreviations. It had been one of the
telegraphers' traditional terms since well before the turn of the
century. During the first World War, 88 was used by the U.S. Army
Signal Corps, again strictly as an operator's abbreviation in
unofficial communications. But at the close of the WWI, 88 achieved
official status as part of amateur radio terminology, "Love and

73, K9HI

ARRL Eastern Massachusetts Section
Section Manager: Phillip Temples, K9HI