April 23, 2014

Large crowd turns out for Skywarn

More than 30 firefighters, hams, emergency responders and citizens turned out to learn about storms and how to report severe weather to the National Weather Service (NWS). Bill Parker, with the NWS office in Shreveport, taught a basic and an advanced class Tuesday evening (4/22/14) at the Rusk County Sheriff's Office.

Several RCARC members were part of the group. The club is currently working on establishing the protocols to activate storm-spotting nets when severe weather is possible in the area.

RCARC hams it up with the Kiwanis

Richard (K5RRB) and David (W5CWT) spoke to the Henderson Kiwanis' Club on Tuesday about the importance and fun of amateur radio. The Kiwanis were most impressed with Richard's ability to make a QSO to Lake Palestine from the basement of the ETMC hospital, where the club meets for lunch.

"How many of your cell pones have service down here?" Richard asked, before calling "CQ" on the repeater. When a fellow ham responded from more than 50 miles away in crystal clear audio, the room was in awe. It was a fine example of how when everything else fails...ham radio!

April 17, 2014

SKYWARN class set for tonight

It's official! Rusk County residents will have an opportunity to refresh their storm-spotting skills (or learn them for the first time) in April. The National Weather Service will be in Rusk County on Tuesday, April 22, 2014. The class will run from 6 pm - 9 pm at the Rusk County Sheriff's Department Training Room, 210 W Charlevoix St, in Henderson. (Click link for a map).

The free training will include both Basic and Advance level training sessions and is open to the public. Hams, along with local EMS, firefighters and first responders are encouraged to attend.  Rusk County Office of Emergency Management is organizing the classes, so if you plan to attend, please RSVP emailing Patrick Dooley at patrick.dooley[at]ruskcountyoem.org so he can get a head count.

April 13, 2014

Club enjoys time at the I-20 Tailgate

Several members of the Rusk County Amateur Radio Club traveled to LaTourneau University Saturday to the I-20 Tailgate. The event, hosted by more than 15 radio clubs from around East Texas, was a great success.

The RCARC donated one of several door prizes given away during the event and several members picked up a number of items from tailgaters, including radios, microphones and antennas.

April 11, 2014

Club participates in Electric Coop's Expo

The Rusk County Amateur Radio Club participated in the annual Farm and Ranch Expo hosted by the Rusk County Electric Cooperative in Henderson Thursday. Richard (K5RRB) and Craig (KD5YHR) set up the club's booth and shared their passion of ham radio with Expo visitors.

The club was a part of the health and emergency services section of the expo, providing visitors with opportunities to learn more about preparing for local emergencies and improving their health. Several non-hams stopped by the booth to talk about ham radio and ask how they might begin the process of become hams themselves!

April 07, 2014

Texas Parks On The Air a success!

KN5G and K5RRB enjoying the
morning at Martin Creek State Park.
On April 5, 2014, members of the Rusk County Amateur Radio Club activated the Martin Creek Lake State Park for the Texas State Parks on the Air Contest. Five members of the RCARC club met at 8:00 a.m. Saturday morning to erect antennas and set up the amateur, “HAM” radio station on the shore of Martin Creek Lake.

Guests at the adjoining campsites were curious as to why five grown men would be using a rod-n-reel to cast a fishing wait up and over as high a tree limb as we could manage. After explaining to them that we were planning to pull a length of wire up as high as possible to use as a radio antenna they knowingly nodded their heads and went back to their campsite, but they kept a watchful eye on their kids in case they happened got too close to what I’m sure seemed to them to be crazy radio guys.

April 03, 2014

Test of the Storm Spotter Net set

By W5CWT, Dave  - Next week (April 14-16) there will be a test of the local Storm Spotter Activation Plan including a Storm Spotter Net on the RCARC repeater. The test will be initiated by call through the county's CodeRed Alert system to all Rusk County hams who are registered with the county as storm spotters.

The test will be during the evening hours on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. Spotters should receive a call and/or an email requesting storm spotter activation. The call will identify itself as a "test". It will also instruct spotters to check into the storm spotter net on the local repeater at that time. A "test" net will be conducted immediately after the alert to simulate a real activation. However, spotters will NOT be asked to deploy to any spotting locations during the test.