A Monthly Update from the President’s Shack

As we head into the month of June, it is easy to focus on all of the activities of the summer. From graduation celebrations to family vacation time, gardening, lawn mowing and general fix-ups of our homes; June is a very busy time. The same holds true with the PRA for the month. As an organization of amateur radio enthusiasts, we are looking not only at one of the busiest months of the year for activities, but one of the most fun.

Any given month produces at least 10 opportunities to participate with the PRA. Each week, we have three on-the-air nets, unless bumped by one of our face-to-face meetings (Monthly Meeting or Elmer Night). On top of these activities in June, the PRA is participating in Pedaling-4-Parkinson’s (P4P) and the ARRL Field Day. Both P4P and Field Day capture the skills, professionalism, knowledge, and passion that our members have. In the P4P Event, a group of over 20 PRA members will provide communications over 60-miles of courses throughout Arapahoe and Douglas Counties. We have operators that will be assisting at each Aid Station to support the timely and accurate communication of needs for those we serve. We will also have operators with experience in bicycle repair that will be serving dual roles in fixing and providing communications! As we have been told by the event coordinators, “we will never do this without the PRA.” We made quite an impression in our first year and it is obvious that there is nothing amateur about amateur radio.

One of the most highly anticipated events for the PRA is participating in the annual ARRL Field Day. Over the course of 24-hours, we will set up a series of radios with a focus of making as many contacts as possible with other participating stations around the world in less than ideal conditions. Even though our focus is making contacts, our purpose is to teach, learn, laugh, and get on the air. I can remember my first Field Day almost 30-years ago and I vividly remember having a fair amount of mic-fright. After some one-on-one coaching, encouragement, and a few Elmers showing me the ropes, I conquered my fear because of the support and encouragement that I received from people I only met a few hours earlier. Support, encouragement, and mentoring; great operators always focus on that in demonstrating amateur radio. With nearly 60% of the PRA membership taking a trip to the hills for Field Day, our only fear is running out of food. Considering the preparation involved, we know that will not happen.

Whether amateur radio is providing a service or demonstrating the magic of the hobby in two-way wireless communications, one thing is for sure; it takes a balance of support, encouragement, mentoring, learning, teaching, and laughter to make it successful and fun. At the PRA, we remain focused on our core beliefs of “playing radio, having fun, and keeping the squelch loose.” May you have a safe, fun, and memorable June.

Dan – N2SRK
Parker Radio Association

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