Tag Archives: 2022

Field Day 2022

Field day 2022 is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday June 25 and 26. It officially starts at 1800 UTC, 2PM Eastern Time.

PWCARES generally sets something up for Field Day and this year is no exception. We are going to run an ad hoc set up. John, KK4TCE, and myself will be there. If you would like to join us, please drop the EC a note so we can coordinate gear and supplies.

The League has a Field Day website and you are encouraged to visit and read the rules so we all know what is what. Also we use the N3FPJ software for logging, so you might want to download it before the day and play with it a bit to become familiar with it.

See you at Field Day!

Summer Calendar Update

Some upcoming events for your calendar:

  • MCM Historic Half Marathon: Sunday, May 22, 2022 (0600 start). A few more are needed. Please sign up at Volunteer Local and drop an email to RVARCEvents so they know. Action plan is on their website.
  • Hurricane Season: Wednesday, June 1, 2022 – Wednesday, November 30, 2022.
  • OSS/CIA Overnight Run: Saturday, June 11, 2022, through AM Sunday, June 12, 2022. The race begins at 1900 and runs through 0700. Rob Williams is coordinating. If you are interested, let me know and I will drop him the note.
  • MCM Crossroads 15K and Belleau Wood 8K: Saturday, June 25, 2022 (0600ish) start. Please sign up at Volunteer Local if you are interested.
  • Field Day: Saturday & Sunday June 25 & 26, 2022: More in a moment
  • WWI Dale City Parade: Monday, 4 July, 2022. I can put you in touch with Rob Williams who is leading the event.
  • Willing Warriors Vettes for Vets: Saturday, July 9, 2022: We need two people for this. You need to be mobile (and waterproof) for this event (we’ve had some lovely downpours during the event). Please drop me a note if you are interested.
  • MCM Quantico 12K: Saturday, August 20, 2022 (0600ish start). Sign up coming soon.

Now for some notes:

  • Training: Saturday, May 21, 2022: Due to a cranky client I cannot attend training. I would encourage everyone to check their gear, and get ready for hurricane season. If you want to practice Winlink, my node is up in receive mode. If you would like to get together on the lawn at the EOC, please let me know and I will make it happen, but there will be no formal training this month (sorry).
  • Field Day: Field Day is a bit more than a month away. Is there any interest in doing an ARES set up this year? If so, who is going to lead it and if you want it at the County facilities, please let me know so I can get it set up.

That is the updates as I know them. If there are other events you know about that need our support, please drop the EC a note.

April Communications Exercise

I moved our regular March Training to April, as most of you know. I did not want to miss out on an opportunity to do some traffic practice. Discussing this with some of our surrounding friends, this has grown a bit beyond just a standard PWCARES training.

Here is the general outline.

We will have an in-field operation at the Prince William County Government Center (our normal grassy area). This will be the centre of operations. I anticipate the following:

HF:

  • 40m station (7240 kHz)
  • 20/10m station (Suggest a frequency)

VHF:

  • A simplex station on VHFARES1 (147.525)
  • A repeater station (OVH or WWI or both if I can get permission)

UHF:

  • A simplex station (445.925)

There will also be a short training via WebEx (for those that wish to operate from home or our friends outside the immediate area) where we will cover the basics of passing traffic.

Logistics:

We will need some volunteers to help set up antennas and gear at the site, and we will need some antennas, radios, and tuners (for HF).

Because of this, we will do the WebEx training at 10 AM on Saturday, April 9, 2022, but we will set an arrival time at the site at 0800. This will also allow us to test frequencies and make alterations.

We will also have a dedicated Slack channel for remote information – if you are not on the PWCARES Slack, we will add you.

Types of Messages:

Over the next couple of weeks, I will send out some sample messages, but you are more than welcome to write up your own.

We will focus primarily on ICS-213s and ICS-213-RRs for this exercise and passing messages with voice.

We are still working out some of the details, so if you have questions, please send them my way, and I will develop a FAQ as best I can.

I will post updates to https://blog.pwcares.org/, so check the blog for the latest and greatest on this exercise.

Weather:

If the weather is bad – bad being below 50 degrees, high winds, or active precipitation – we will move to a fully remote exercise. I will still conduct the WebEx training.

To participate, please fill in this Google form.

If you have any questions or additional comments, please drop me a note.

January Training Update

For those unable to join us on Saturday, January 15, 2022, here are the highlights from the meeting.

The slides are available at HaikuDeck if you want to review.

We covered the past actions with the Marine Corps Marathon Program Office. They appreciate us being there as an extra set of eyes on the course, and of course, we get the practice. We also support Willing Warriors. They have two primary events at the moment – Vettes for Vets and the Warrior Bike Ride, a series of metric century, 25 mile, and 13 mile fun ride. And finally we participated in Field Day both in 2000, and 2021, and we thank Prince William County for their support both times.

We have some upcoming events. The first event is Saturday, March 26, 2022 – the MCM Crossroads 17.75 which will be held at Prince William Forest Park. More details as we get closer to the event. Please make sure to check the ARES calendar at https://www.pwcares.org. It is a public Google calendar and you can subscribe to it.

We answered the question What does ARES mean to you? to help us all level set. Here is the word cloud from that exercise:

We also answered the question What does the EC do? Here is the word cloud:

David, KG4GIY had some commentary on some of the responses.

Erv, the prior EC for Prince William once told David that the EC is an emergency coordinator, not an emergency communicator. As Greg, KM4CCG, mentioned in his Field Day review:

and it should be noted that we managed to get David on HF1!

Hearding Cats: This is an old consulting joke, but is very applicable to volunteer management. We all come from different places and different life experience, and getting volunteers to do things in the same direction is a challenge. When David, as EC asks the Cadre to take training it is not because David wants us to take it, but because one of our served agencies want us to take it, or FEMA wants us to take it so Prince William County can be reimbursed, or because the Federal Government wants us to take the training, again so the county can be reimbursed. PWCARES maintains a Training page with all the current training requirements.

Never Leaves: David has been the EC for twenty-one years, this April. That is a long time to lead an organization, and David expressed his desire to not be the EC for the next twenty years. He asks the Cadre to ponder what it wants in its next EC and who might be able to fill the road. This is not an immediate need, but we need to start succession planning. It was pointed out by Jack, WC4J and others that the EC also has to be able to talk to the senior management at our served agencies, not just be able to understand the technobabble, or geek speak that might only be useful for technologists.

Our workshop revolved around what should be in your go-kit in a post-Covid world. The obvious addition is PPE (mask, gloves, hand-sanitizer). Most of the items we already consider for our kit have not changed significantly. David will update the Preparedness page over the next few weeks to include some of the items identified.

Please send any questions to the EC and he will respond as necessary.

A quick public service announcement. If you participate on a VTC, please remember to mute your microphone. We really don’t want to hear you eating.

Thanks for taking time out of your morning. Next training is Saturday, March 19, 2022 at 0900 at the EOC. Details will be sent closer to training day.

  1. This was the third or fourth time in 20 years that David has worked HF.