I trust everyone enjoyed a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year. As 2016 begins, so does a new year of opportunities for our ARES team.
Coming up on January 28th, we will have our monthly ARES meeting for Franklin County at the EOC in Ozark, in the basement of the courthouse. We will start around 6:30 PM and will have the weekly Franklin & Logan County ARES Net during the meeting. If any of you are interested in filling in as net control I can supply you with the preamble and script for the net. I would like to have a couple of hams on a list so that in the event I am called into work, or have to be out of town the net will go on. Don’t worry about a training format, just completing the weekly check in will be great, and a few announcements of things we have coming up.
Speaking of nets, remember that we have a weekly net at7:00 PM on the 145.350 N5XMZ repeater with a PL tone of 151.4 Our attendance fell considerably as December progressed, and that is understandable with all the Holiday activities. Hopefully, we will begin picking back up for January.
By way of announcements for upcoming events, the Arkansas River Valley Amateur Radio Foundation (ARVARF) Ham Fest will be coming up on Saturday March 5th in Russellville. To my knowledge it will be held at the same location as in previous years. I will try to get more information regarding that hamfest to share on the net.
April the 2nd, the Fort Smith Area Amateur Radio Club will present their annual Hanging Judge Hamfest, which will coincide with the Delta Division Convention. This should be a well attended event with the addition of the convention. For more information regarding location, admission, and guests go to www.fsaarc.org .
Speaking of the Fort Smith Area Amateur Radio Club, if you are aware of anyone desiring to attend the classes for the Technician Class license, they will be conducting classes from late February through March, with a testing session at the hamfest. The study books will be provided by the club for purchase or for a deposit that can be refunded if the book is returned in good condition. For additional details, refer to web address in the previous paragraph. A class for the General Class license will be held from late August through September with a testing session in October. The location for the classes will be at the Health South Rehab Center next to Sparks Hospital.
We are just now starting to see some winter temperatures and a mention of the frozen stuff in the forecast. But as we have seen recently, storm season is never far off in this part of the world. With that in mind our 2016 Skywarn Storm Spotter Class will be held on Thursday March 17th at 6:30 PM in Ozark. I have not yet confirmed the location but will share that information as soon as I have that firmed up. That class will be our ARES meeting for March! And…since we will all be at the class, there will not be a net that night. I’ll be sure and share that on the net. The Weather Service has had their budget trimmed, and only one meteorologist is available to go out to teach the class this year, and we have had to work closely with their schedule and availability.
Looking forward to hearing you on the net, and seeing you at our meetings and maybe some of the area hamfests!
Rick Covert KD5GSP
Franklin County ARES EC
Franklin County Skywarn Coordinator