Minutes of the OVH Meeting

September 18, 2006



John / KG4NXT called meeting to order at 2000 Eastern Time.


Following the Pledge of Allegiance, all present stated their names and call signs.  There were 26 OVH members and five guests present.




Carrie Osterhouse of the Prince William County Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit gave us a presentation on Fleet Watch.  Carrie had just returned to the United States after having been overseas for six and one-half years.  She is in charge of the County’s Fleetwatch and Business Watch programs, and well as the Warship Watch program.  Carrie noted that a lot of what the PW County Police do depends on the general public.  Our role is to observe.  We know our communities best.  So, when something doesn’t look right, we know.  She wants us to report criminal / suspicious activity.  Steve / N4OGR will be our contact person for Fleet Watch.  Carrie brought Fleet Watch bumper stickers and would like for each of us to be a call-in station.  The bumper stickers would help identify us as call-in stations.


For emergencies, dial 911.   Dial (703) 792-6500 for non-emergencies.  Carrie gave us a list of possible suspicious situations, and the handout describes those situations.  The handout also described the information that is needed when we call in.  Identify yourself as a Fleet Watch member and a member of OVH, and stay on the phone until the operator tells you to hang up and/or call back.  If you use the radio, give a callback number.  It’s actually better to use the cell phone because the operator can get the call-back number through caller id.  It would help if we keep a record of the calls that we make.


Thank you Carrie for taking the time to give your presentation on the Prince William County Fleet Watch program to the Ole’ Virginia Hams.






John / KG4NXT read a thank-you letter from Mend-a-House.  We donated the money from the OVH Hamfest bake sale plus additional funds to Mend-a-House for a total of $400.  For 22 years, Mend-a-House has helped build ramps, lifts, and other devices in homes to make those homes more accessible to people with disabilities.  They have a fund raising event on October 11.


John / KG4NXT thanked all who helped out with the OVH Special Event commemorating the anniversary of the 2nd Battle of Manassas / Bull Run.  The event went very well, and all of the QSL cards have been mailed out.  We also received several QSL cards from Hams who contacted OVH during the event.


John / KG4NXT noted that Bill / N3OH had an unexpected business commitment and could not be at the meeting, and thus could not update the Treasurer’s Report.  However, John and Mary Lu / KB4EFP noted that the Club’s financial situation had not changed significantly since the August 2006 business meeting.  We should have an updated Treasurer’s report at the October 2006 business meeting.


Steve / N4OGR noted that we received a certificate of appreciation from the folks at National Night Out for our recent participation in their event.


MEMBERSHIP: Joe / KI4OHR – One new potential member was read in by Joe: Matthew Babcock / KI4RDB, who will be voted on for membership at the October 2006 OVH meeting.  Edward Morthimer / WA3TOL and Patricia “Trisha” Rabe / KI4PCM were voted into OVH membership by unanimous votes.  Welcome to the Ole’ Virginia Hams, Edward and Trisha.


EDUCATION: Trisha / KI4PCM – The new Technician class starts this Thursday.  Several OVH members have volunteered to help with the class.  The class will take place at the Red Cross building in Old Town Manassas.


REPEATERS: Art / W1CRO – All repeaters are currently working well.  However, the back-up 440 machine has some problems.  Efforts are being made to fix that machine.


JOTA: John / KG4NXT - We need some more volunteers to help with the event.  We don’t yet have confirmation on having the event at the Urbana Swim Club, but we are working on that.  The event takes place on October 21.  Theresa / KG4TVM has printed up a flier.  We also need people to help with setup the day before.


BPL: George / K4GVT – We recently had Ed Hair from ARRL visit Manassas.  He found some more “BPL hot spots.”  But things are relatively and suspiciously quiet at the present time with regard to BPL noise.  We have asked the FCC to come to Manassas to verify the situation.  George spoke with Riley Hollingsworth today (October 18, 2006), and George understands that FCC is coming to Manassas to investigate the BPL situation.


ARES: David / KG4GIY - David suggested that we prepare our “action plan” and be prepared in the event of an emergency.  David also noted that there are several activities coming up: The MS Challenge Walk on September 29 to October 1; Simulated Emergency Test (SET) on Oct 7; Diabetes Association event at the Freedom Center on October 14; NCAC Institute on October 21; Operation Fowl Play on October 23 to 25 (this is state-wide event that simulates distributing pharmaceuticals); the Marine Corps Marathon on October 29.  In December, there will be an event for PW County which will be a full-scale demo for Emergency Managers, in which the plan is to demonstrate HF and video communications.  If we know a ham on the Pacific Coast or perhaps Alaska, that person could help with a demonstration of long-distance communications.  Complete information on these events is on the PW County ARES website.  The website address is www.qsl.net/pwcares.


The minutes of the August 2006 OVH meeting were approved.


George / K4GVT won the 50/50 raffle.  $28 was collected, and George donated his winning share of $14 back to the Club.  Thank you George.


Joe / KI4OHR reminded all that a net takes place from Virginia Railway Express train # 327.  The net starts shortly after the train leaves Alexandria, which is just after 4:00p.m.  The net takes place on the simplex frequency of 146.550.


The meeting adjourned at 2121 Eastern time.