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KG8CW March 8, 2014 at 10:43

Hello Everyone

Another year is in front of us and there are many good things going on. Last year saw the upgrade of both the EOC and POMH stations. We are VHF, HF, voice and digital ready. We installed multiple antenna’s at both locations to allow for expanded operations. This means we need at least 2 op’s per site and really a 3rd at the EOC. That was last year. The EOC is moving for a couple of years to the NEW EOC location at the governmental center. This means a complete over haul of antenna’s and equipment for that location. We have been ask to install a marine antenna on the comm van. Plus we still need to complete the HF antenna at POMH.
We were not approved by the tribe for a grant to update our mobile comm and our aged and struggling repeater. This is disappointing to say the least since part of the funds would have been for hardline to move the current VHF portion to another site. Currently we have a birdie right on the input freq of the repeater. Even with PL, it degrades the receive and with out a move not much will improve.

We have a good fund to at least fix current old technology or to buy slightly newer repeater but not enough to move to another site.

Many of the ARES/RACES members have contributed to last years 20,000 dollar value given to Benzie County in one form or another. We would however, benefit from having new ARES/RACES members join the cause. If you know a ham in Benzie County reach out and inquire if they would have some time to help maintain the program. The worst part is the 4 ICS courses needed to certify as a ARES/RACES member. The rest is ham radio install, training and operating stations and mobile equipment.

Im sure were going to be in Field Day this year, if you have a equipment and would like to push yourself to operate 24 hours give it a try. Get a commitment from a fellow ham to help out, the more the merrier. We most likely will be ask to help out in the bike ride. This is as real as it gets to monitor people for real emergencies. Want to be net control and practice your skills, let us know.

As for the scuttle butt in the county what I’ve heard is

W8REJ and Dale are going to fly to AZ more and more in the winter time
KD8SUU is moving more and more off the AC grid
K8GL is doing well contesting from his new QTH with two verticals. I hear he’s planting tower seeds.
KD8QYE is thinking new antenna’s in warm weather, hows that packet coming??
KG8CW is going to revamp several of his antenna’s maybe going to phased verticals for 40 and 80
KJ4KFJ is playing catch up on repair and conquer of equipment.
KF8KK is working on new app’s for both worlds of tablets.
AA4R has been contesting from NC and doing very well, and having fun
N8FUN is still playing with tree’s and cutting firewood for next year now.
WA8ZWJ has taken a great trip though out the SW of the U.S. and has Photo’s to prove it. any new eq ??
N2LAH has all this antenna’s working again.
W8TVC can wait to win NET CONTROL again.

Well thats what I can remember now take care and catch you on the WED night net or Monthly breakfasts.

73, KG8CW Mike