Why Join FHARA, Inc.

Dear Fellow Ham,

As chairman of the Fort Herkimer Amateur Radio Association, Inc. (FHARA) membership committee, and on behalf of its many members, I would like to encourage you to attend one of our meetings,to see what we are all about. We are a non profit organization (501(c)3). Meetings are held every 2nd Wednesday of the month at the 911 Center, located on Lou Ambers Drive, Herkimer, NY at 7 p.m. (Follow signs to Herkimer County Community College). We usually have coffee and cookies.

We generally have a program of interest to offer and the general public is invited. Recent programs have included, a presentation by Chris Bouck KB4CMF about Field Day,  Duane Patocka N6RVA on NBEMS,  presentations by the National Weather Service Albany on BASIC SKYWARN and Winter Weather, APRS, Packet, HF, disaster preparedness, satellites Go-Kits and many more.

We have a listing of some of our area repeaters. New information is put out as it becomes available.

The FHARA is closely aligned with Herkimer County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) and supports three ARES / RACES emergency repeaters. FHARA members have helped to construct, maintain, and are able to use these repeaters full capabilities. Herkimer County ARES / RACES holds its meetings in conjunction with FHARA meetings. Most members of the FHARA also belong to ARES / RACES. There is no charge for becoming a member of ARES / RACES, but a registration form must be submitted.

An ARES / RACES net is held each Monday night, at 7 p.m. on the 145.110 repeater. Check-inís are also accepted from the 147.045, and the 147.090 repeaters. This is a training net. The purpose is to train and inform our ARES / RACES members in the proper use of radio procedures during an emergency. We prepare for emergencies by conducting an annual Simulated Emergency Test (SET). We work closely with local government agencies during times of emergency.

The 145.110 repeater, is located near Columbia Center, NY. This repeater has a 167.9 PL tone and an autopatch. It is also connected to a weather receiver, that is tuned to receive bulletins directly from the National Weather Service Albany (NWS). During inclement weather, the repeater will broadcast a loud tone (LITZ) and reports for our area are broadcast directly from the NWS. This feature allows local hams to listen to the NWS, anytime and anywhere, on a handheld or mobile radio, during alerts just by tuning to the 145.110 repeater. If needed, a net will be activated.. Our second repeater, the 147.045, is located on Dairy Hill Road, north of Dolgeville, NY. This repeater also has a 167.9 PL tone. This repeater does not have autopatch capability. Our third repeater is the 147.090. There is no PL tone. It is located next the the 911 center, near the Herkimer County College. Feel free to join in on these excellent repeaters. They are all "open" repeaters and all are welcome to use them.

We participate in many community functions such as parades, bicycle races, foot races, the Utica Boilermaker, Pumpkin Patrol, Canal Days, and various community events providing communications when needed.

We have an educational program that teaches a course at the entry level class of FCC license and the General Class level. It is conducted each Fall and Spring at the Town of German Flatts Hall, provided there are enough students. Please let us know if you hear of anyone interested in learning about ham radio.

Along with the Education Program, we are have a Volunteer Examiner (VE) team, so area hams can take their licensing exams locally. Previously, anyone interested in taking an exam had to travel to Cooperstown, Rome, Verona, or farther to take licensing exams. If you are interested in becoming a VE, contact me or an officer of the association.

If you are interested in ham radio, please come check us out. For your convenience please print a membership application and send it to us. Annual dues are just $15 and for new members, there is a one time $3 initiation fee. Family memberships are available, for an additional $5 annually. Student dues are also at a reduced rate. Our dues allow the organizationís memberís access to the autopatch, and fund our educational program, along with many other things.

I hope that this information is useful to you. Please feel free to contact me at KB4CMF on the Internet, or call 315-428-3927 on the phone, for further information. We look forward to seeing you at one of our meetings. Come see what we are all about.

Sincerely,

Christopher L. Bouck

KB4CMF, Membership Chairman