Calgary Amateur Radio Association
Enjoy Amateur Radio | Serve Our Community
As we start off a new calendar year I want to wish everyone a happy New Year, and welcome to 2019! As 2018 was a busy year, 2019 promises to be another busy and active year for CARA.
First and foremost I want to congratulate and welcome to the Club the individuals that went through the Basic license class this fall and passed the exam in December. Welcome and I hope to meet you at one of the upcoming general meetings, as well hear you on the air on the local repeaters.
To start 2019 we have another Advanced license class starting on Monday January 14th with over 20 sign-ups. We look forward to another great class where people can upgrade their license or in some cases refresh themselves on the material!
I am already starting to see discussions happening in relation to a spring flea market and Field Day events, and I'm excited to see the plans come out for these events in the coming months.
There are many public service events the club participates in and I encourage members to volunteer. The communication support for the Cookie Race and Cochrane winter rally are starting to gear up, I'm sure there will be more information to come from the various radio coordinators for these events.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and perhaps you could share what new toys you found under the Christmas tree at the next general meeting!
Stephane Raimbault, VE6NR
As we fast approach the holiday season I wanted to extend my Seasons Greetings to all club members, along with everyone else.
It has been a busy year, from casino fundraisers, flea markets, Field Day events, to public service events with a variety of ski, bike, and rally races. We even had the opportunity to show off our capabilities at events like Disaster Alley and the Edgemont Emergency Preparedness event this past September. We also had the opportunity for members and others to upgrade their license with our Advanced class, which was held in early January. We also introduced the hobby to a few newcomers with our Basic license class in the fall, which is due to wrap up soon.
All of these things that were done this year could not have been done without the MANY volunteers, and the many volunteer hours that our members have put in, and for that I want to say THANK YOU!
As we look ahead to the New Year, we will be posting information on our website regarding our Advanced class, which we will begin in early January, that is, if we get enough interest to host the Advanced class. We welcome all licensed Amateurs that would like to upgrade their license to Advanced level, or just come for a re-fresher.
The executive have recently reviewed and approved some project proposals to augment and simplify both our club station and communications trailer. We look forward to those improvements being carried forward in to the New Year for the benefit of all club members, and the overall radio community.
May you have a great holiday season, and we will connect again in the New Year!
We had another great general meeting at the end of October with a great presentation by David James, VA7VK/VK3IA on the Communications and life at Macquarie Island from 1901 to today. It was a wonderful talk and view on Antarctic expeditions include one that David was part of in the 70s. He unexpectedly discovered the world of being a rare DX on the HF bands.
At the general meeting we also had a general discussion topic on how to better welcome guests and new members. Dave Cason, our club Vice President has created a discussion topic in our member forum on the website for club members to participate further in the conversation. I encourage all club members, new and experienced to participate and offer suggestions to this important topic as without new members, the club will stagnate and will slowly disappear overtime.
We will dedicate the November general meeting to a round table discussion to introduce the members, their interests, and any active projects that they are working on or have questions. If you have not had the opportunity to introduce yourself or meet other club members, this is the general meeting to attend if you haven’t attended one before.
See you at the next general meeting which takes place at the Calgary Sports Car Club on November 27th at 7pm.
73 de VE6NR,
CARA - President
I think many of you who attended the September CARA General Meeting will
agree with me that it was a wonderful presentation from the AlbertaSat team of
the University of Alberta. Many thanks to Callie and Katelyn who drove down
from Edmonton to give this great presentation on the Ex-Alta 1 and the
upcoming Ex-Alta 2 satellite. We were fortunate to see the team connect and
interact with the satellite during the presentation as the sattelite passed
overhead of their ground station located at the UofA in Edmonton.
The upcoming CARA General Meeting which will be October 23rd
at 7PM will begin with a presentation by David James, VA7VK/VK3IA titled
"Communications and life at Macquarie island 1901 to today." Please see the
event description on the CARA website for a summary of David’s talk. His
presentation will be followed by our Annual General Meeting where we will
review the club’s audited finances.
This past september several members of the amateur radio community
participated at the Edgemont Community Association event on Safety and
Preparedness. Amateur’s from several clubs presented the capabilities and
opportunities that amateur radio provides. Great work everyone on sharing
with the greater public what our hobby and what a vital service we can
At the end of October, CARA is supporting the Calgary Sports Car Club in their
annual Kananaskis Rally. If you are free on October 28th and would like to
volunteer as a radio operator for the event, please visit the posting on our
website for more information: http://www.caraham.org/General-
There has a been a lot of discussion and activity in relation to the CARA
Communications trailer. This is a trailer which can be utilized at a
variety of events
for establishing a communications link across amateur radio. Over the past
year, the trailer has been deployed at public service events and field day on
behalf of CARA and has even been used by the greater amateur radio
community to demonstrate the communication capabilities of amateur radio at
emergency preparedness events such as Disaster Alley and the Edgemont
Emergency Preparedness events. We continue to leverage this asset and
improve on its capabilities. If you are interested in the trailer’s capabilities and
are interested in helping the Communications Trailer Teams initiatives, please
reach out to the team by contacting participating in the Comm Trailer Forum on
the members section of our website. http://www.caraham.org/Comm-Trailer-
Greetings all and welcome to September. I hope everyone had a good summer despite all the smoke from the terrible fires in BC. I hope you were able to find reprieve from the smoke.
I am excited for another season with the club to get started. The new CARA Executive Board has met both in early August and early September to ensure that club business is continually progressing; we are looking to provide more updates at the upcoming general meeting(s).
For the September general meeting we are pleased to receive the University of Alberta’s AlbertaSat team (https://albertasat.ca/) for a presentation of their work on ExAlta-1 which is currently in orbit monitoring space weather and their upcoming ExAlta-2 which will predict and detect wildfires. Our general meetings are open to both members and non-members so please come on down to the Calgary Sports Car Club on September 25th. More information will be posted on our website as we get closer to the date.
The CARA Executive Board is currently reviewing all our non-elected roles within the club to ensure all key roles are filled. We will be posting more information on the website as we review the vacant roles that are available. In the meantime, if you would like an increased role in the club or would like to help coordinate events within the club, please contact the CARA Executive Board (email@example.com) with your expression of interest and we will match you to a vacant role that suits your interests.
I can’t believe it is already June and the executive elections are upon us. I have had a wonderful time seeing the club from a new perspective over the last few months.
I was at first hesitant putting my name forward as I have never been involved at this level in an organization such as this one. Being that I was filling a position that was recently vacated, I saw this as a trial run to see how things went leading up to the elections… so after 7 months, my interest in both the hobby and the club have only grown, and I look forward to leaving my name stand at the upcoming election for a full 2 year term if the membership so desires it.
I have been continually impressed with all the various activities that the Club and its members partake in, which has kept things quite busy. Thank you to all the volunteers which make things like the Flea Market, Field Day, Casino fundraiser, Cookie Race, Cochrane winter rally, Rocky Mountain rally, Banff-Jasper relay, the various general meetings and other special interest group meeting topics, the Repeater Group which keeps the repeaters functioning, the DX Group, which maintains the wonderful station at the Calgary Sports Car Club for members to use, and all the various public service events that our club members partake in beyond the ones directly supported by the Club.
The next general meeting, which takes place on Tuesday, June 26th at the Calgary Sports Car Club, is an important one for several reasons. This meeting is where the election will take place to renew and welcome new members to the executive, which will guide the club over the next 2 years. It will also signify a milestone for the Club where we are returning our general meetings to the Calgary Sports Car Club after the concerns regarding the mold has been addressed, and we look forward to maintaining this environment moving forward to ensure a safe and enjoyable space to welcome members.
We will be hosting a ‘mobile radio check out’ prior to the meeting, so come by early (6:30pm) for checking out your mobile setup.
I look forward to seeing all of you at the final general meeting of this season before we break for the summer months of July and August.
73 de VE6NR
May has arrived and just like that we have broken out of winter and right into what already feels like summer!
Over the last couple general meetings, I was disappointed that our membership attendance has fallen below quorum. This makes it difficult to effectively run the club and address club business items that come up. I encourage the general membership to attend the general meetings not only for the interesting presentations but to also get an update on what the club is working on and get your voice heard on what we could change to make it even better for everyone.
If you have not been able to attend the last few meetings, please make an extra effort to attend the upcoming general meeting in May and especially the one we will have in June, as we will be conducting our biennial executive election. We are looking for interested individuals that would like to join the executive. Although most of the executive have indicated they will have their name stand for re-election, there will be some that have decided to take a step back and we encourage the membership to consider participating with the executive and help make decisions on club business during a 2 year term.
I am pleased to see some positive momentum in establishing a CARA Field Day event. It will take place at the Military Museum just as last year. It may be a scaled down event compared to last year as we have not had a large turnout of volunteers, as of yet. If you are interested in participating at the Field Day this year, please stay tuned to the website and more information will be posted shortly.
Rocky Mountain Rally in Invermere is happening May 25 - 27th. I understand that there are several radio volunteer opportunities still available at this wonderful event and I encourage you to consider this event. There is additional information posted in the general forum on the CARA website for this event.
Thank you and see you at the next general meeting!
The CARA Spring Flea Market has come and gone for another year and wow, what a wonderful event thanks to the sponsors, vendors, participants and of course those that volunteered to help organize and setup the event. Thank you to all and it could not have been a great success with all the pieces that we had, especially those that volunteered; Dave VE6DED, Doug VE6CID, Jim VE6JF, Don VE3DD, Frank VE6ZQ; and many others!
We had approximately 250 participants with over 40 vendor tables and some very lucky Hams who won the raffle and 50/50 door prizes. Anis VA6TUN won the Yaesu FTM-400XDR and Akin VA6ATA took home the FTM-3200R. Another lucky winner is Neil Brown who won the 50/50. Congratulations to all 3 of you and thanks once again for our sponsor Radioworld Central for working with the club on such great raffle prizes!
As we prepare to support the upcoming public service events such as the Rocky Mountain Rally and the Banff-Jasper Relay I encourage all members to keep a close eye on our changing website for information regarding those events for some volunteering opportunities.
We would also like to inform club members that with the recent completion of the 2018 Casino we are now accepting project proposals for the upcoming casino funds we are expecting in June. We are requesting that project proposals be submitted by June 1st, 2018 for consideration by the executive. Projects will be considered as per the revised policy manual (version 2018.2 or later). Please reach out to the executive if you have any questions regarding the project proposal process.
What a month of activity for the club and it’s members! With the Cookie Race, Cochrane Winter Rally, Casino all behind us with the help of very many volunteer hours to make those events work like clock work… Great job everyone involved, especially Tony Mountjoy VE6MX, Dana Harding VA6DJH, Garry Spicer VE6GDS, Dave Cason VE6DED our volunteer and event coordinators. Fantastic work team… you clearly knocked the word “amateur” out of amateur radio.
All this in addition to all the other regular club activities going on such as the various group meetings (general, special interest groups) and the presentations at each of them, radio contests, nets, work on the website and Key Klix, and many more things that is creating a buzz within the club. I am continued to be amazed and impressed by the efforts put in by members. Let’s all try to make sure the same 10 percent aren’t doing all the work, I call to all members to contribute where you can…. Every little bit counts.
As we prepare for the Flea Market which takes place on April 14th, we are still looking for some volunteers to help at the door, setup and tear down, etc… If you are interested in contributing some time to a great event for the Amateur Radio community, please e-mail your club executive: firstname.lastname@example.org
But that is not all…. We have been working with Pat Spencer VE6PDS on some behind the scenes changes to our website, and now it’s time to look at making changes that are more visible.
2018 will be an exciting year of change for the CARA website. The website has a long history and it is time to do some housecleaning and implement some changes. The list of improvements that we are planning include a more efficient menu, better mobile support, less confusion on where “Members-only” content is located, and a general cleanup of old data.
There will also be an update this year to the Wild Apricot hosting software that will greatly improve our ability to manage access to the website for content contributors. We expect to see a lot smoother operation of the overall website management going forward.
We will be adding a new Blog for communicating Web Site Updates that will allow members to track what changes have been made. When the changes are implemented, members can review the details and avoid unwelcome surprises.
In the meantime, you may see minor changes as we ramp up the preparations and get closer to a refresh.
As we enter the next few months it is evident that the club is busy and hopping. We have several club volunteers stepping up to help on some CARA supported events such as 2018 Cookie Race (Feb 24th), 2018 Cochrane Winter Rally (Mar 4th), the 2018 CARA Casino (Mar 8th and 9th) and the upcoming 2018 CARA Spring Flea Market (Apr 14th).
These events could not be there without your support. Thank you, volunteers!
There is still a need for additional volunteers at some of these events. Please login to the CARA website and reach out to the event coordinators to see how you could help. Information can be found both in the event calendar and in the members blogs on the website.
The executive has also been on a few different fronts.
CSCC Club Station
We continue to work with the CSCC executive to get updates on the remediation of the bathrooms and to ensure appropriate documentation indicating that the building is a safe location that we can all enjoy once again.
The executive continues to explore our current and previous unspent Casino Funds to ensure we are funding projects that meet the use of proceeds requirements and benefits our club, its members, and the overall general public and amateur community. As we prepare for our 2018 Casino we intended to have any outstanding funds assigned to approved projects so a clean slate can be had with the 2018 funds.
Revisions to the Policy Manual
There are some revisions to the policy manual which will be posted on the website and Key Klix. There were some items that didn’t seem clear or seemed counter to the bylaws. We look forward to your feedback at the next general meeting or through the website.
2018 Spring Flea Market
We are still in need of several volunteers to help out with the event. Please contact the CARA executive if you are interested in volunteering some of your time at the event.
We are working on setting up learning conferences, raffle and door prizes, and many other things…. I look forward to seeing many of you at this event.