Handiham 57th Anniversary Announcement

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a sought-after contact and to be on the receiving end of a pileup? Well, your chance to have this experience will be coming soon!

On Friday, April 26 through Sunday, April 28, the Handiham Program will celebrate its 57th anniversary. We will be celebrating with a QSO party sponsored by the Handiham Radio Club, and all currently licensed Handiham Program members are welcome and encouraged to participate.

The object is to work as many stations as possible during the 48-hour operating period. We also will use this opportunity to promote and give more details about the Handiham Program and the Handiham Radio Club for those who are interested. Participants may use all amateur bands and modes to make contacts, including digital and VOIP modes.

The QSO party will start at 1900 UTC on Friday and run through 1900 UTC on Sunday. Logs will be required and may be submitted by mail or email no later than June 1, 2024. The exchange is simply name and state, province, or country. One point will be given per contact.

Call CQ Handiham 57, and grab those contacts, or listen for stations calling CQ Handiham 57, and give them a contact! Most of all, get on the air and have fun!

Please tell any contacts that they can obtain a commemorative Handiham special anniversary event QSL card by qsling direct to the Handiham Program. See the www.handiham.net or the www.handiham.org web site for more details.

Handiham World Update for December 21, 2023

2023 has been another active year for the Handiham Program. As the year opened, we were busy preparing for our first in-person Radio Camp since 2019. Additionally, students were working on the second semester of the virtual Technician Class covering the new question pool that took effect in July of 2022. February brought even more winter weather here in Minnesota as we launched another intermediate level Morse code class.

In March, we started holding regular monthly virtual meetings of the Handiham Radio Club via Zoom and worked on adopting a new constitution and bylaws. Soon, Jerry, W0UH, was elected as the new President of the Handiham Radio Club, giving Linda, N7HVF, a well-deserved break after her long term since the election at Radio Camp in 2019. In March, we also said goodbye to Pemdy, who had been our administrative assistant since 2018. Pemdy was with the Handiham Program for almost five years, and we are grateful for her support during that time.

In April, we wrapped up our first 24 week, two-semester Technician class, and Kevin Lukens got his license just a few weeks later. Kevin, KC3WDG, has enjoyed getting on the air both with his HT and using Echolink, and he is now studying for his General.

In May, we announced the arrival of LaToya, our new administrative assistant who had started in April. As we prepared to head off to Dayton Hamvention, we also wrapped up the intermediate Morse code class with a live QSO during class. It was exciting to see the results from the semester!

Dayton Hamvention was different this year in that we had great weather! For those of you who frequent Dayton Hamvention, you know that often we get exciting weather during that event. It was great to catch up with members who stopped by the booth including Mark Jenal, N2MJT, who shared that he had passed his General exam and was now preparing for his Extra (which he passed in September). Mark had been part of our virtual General class in fall 2021 and the Extra Class in winter/spring 2022. During Hamvention, we found time to talk with people from Kenwood to learn more about the upcoming TH-D75, another blind accessible radio. We also visited the ARDC booth to express our gratitude for their support of the Handiham Program.

In July, we got the sad news that Ron Milliman, K8HSY, was a silent key. Ron had been with the Handiham Program for many years, and he most recently had taught a series of classes on homemade antennas for our 55th anniversary celebration week. He is missed by all.

In August, we got the sad news that Bob Zeida, N1BLF, was also a silent key. Bob had read for the Handiham Program for many years in addition to recording books for the blind and visually impaired. We wish his family well as they grieve his loss.

Over the summer months, we were busy getting the final plans together for our first hotel-based Radio Camp. Before we knew it, September was here, and campers were flying in from all over the US plus one camper who came all the way from Munich, Germany. One comment that we heard from campers and volunteers alike was how much everyone enjoyed spending time with each other. During camp, we had classes that covered everything from weather spotting for the visually impaired to antenna theory and construction. Every camper stated they want to return next year! We also got to hold an in-person and virtual Handiham Radio Club meeting during camp, which was really special.

Sadly, in early September, we said goodbye to LaToya. In the short time that she was with us, she made a positive impact on many members. We then started the process of finding another administrative assistant which is ongoing.

In late September, we began our first virtual advanced level Morse code class. While our initial goal was 20 words per minute, we realized we needed to advance that goal to 25 as the students were rapidly progressing. It is an exciting “problem” to have! We kept students busy in December with a series of QSOs about Kris, KR1NGL, and his struggle as he tests new equipment for the busy night ahead. This is a two-semester class that wrapped up this week, and the second semester starts in mid-February.

In late September, we also started our first two-semester virtual General Class license class using the new question pool that took effect in July. The students have been faithful in attending the weekly classes and studying so they can be ready for their General exam when class wraps up in early April of 2024.

In October, we started working on getting the contracts ready for the 2024 Radio Camp. While it seems like it is far away, we are realizing how fast it is coming! We are making plans to improve the camp experience based on everything we learned from this year’s camper and volunteer feedback.

November was busy with camp plans, Morse code classes, and General classes, which brings us to December. Another year went by so fast but with many exciting things happening as the Handiham Program continues to grow and evolve. I want to say a special thank you to our many members who faithfully help other members, honoring the tradition of elmers in the ham radio hobby. I came up through the Handiham Program as a member and later a volunteer. Now I am privileged to be the one running the Program, and I can’t wait to see what the future brings!

The Handiham Program will be closed for the annual holiday break and will reopen on January 8th. I look forward to connecting with you after the break! Also, remember to attend the next Handiham Radio Club meeting on January 7th at 3pm Central Time.

I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


Lucinda AB8WF

Handiham World Update for November 27, 2023

This is the time of year when we pause to say thank you to the many donors and volunteers that make it possible for us to accomplish the mission of the Handiham Program. Our faithful volunteers donate hundreds of hours of their time to help Handiham Program members with ham radio education, learning Morse code, making contacts, operating radios, and even learning about useful assistive technology. Donors provide both funds and equipment to help Handiham members get more active in the hobby. We thank you!

Things remain very busy in the Handiham Program office as we quickly approach the end of 2023. We are working on the search for a new administrative assistant, and hopefully we will have a new one soon. In the meantime, you can reach out to me at handiham@allina.com if you need assistance with anything.

The 2024 Radio Camp is just over 9 months away! Now is the time to start planning to attend. You can put September 4th through 11th on your calendar for next year to join us for a fun week of ham radio activities and fellowship with other Handiham members. We have even more fun things planned for campers in 2024 including a lot more hands-on radio time! To join us for the 2024 Radio Camp, just send an email to handiham@allina.com, and I will put you on the list for an application. Applications will be sent out in January so you will have plenty of time to complete them and plan your trip to Minneapolis.

Jerry, W0UH, our net manager, would like to invite you to check into the Handiham Radio Club net. We have great net control stations who faithfully keep the net running smoothly and provide interesting dialogue each day. The Handiham Radio Club sponsors daily nets at 11:00 am Central time and on Wednesdays at 7:00 pm Central time on the Handiham Conference Server. Please join us as often as you can! It’s a great time to get together with other hams throughout the world and enjoy some good conversation.

The Advanced Morse Code Class is in its 10th week already, and the students are doing very well. Already, they are copying code at 18 to 20 words per minute, so we are increasing our final goal to 25 words per minute at the end of the second semester. The advanced code class is two semesters with a long break between semesters. For this class, you should have regular access to an HF station with Morse code capability. To become fluent in any language, including Morse code, students will need to get on the air to practice as part of the class.

If Morse code sounds like something you want to learn, we will have a virtual beginner class starting in September of 2024. This class is designed for Handiham Program members who are new to Morse code and will teach all the characters along with prosigns. At the end of the one semester class, students should be able to copy Morse code at five words per minute. If you want to join this class, send an email to me at Handiham@allina.com so I can add you to the list for an application.

The new 2023-2027 General Class question pool is available on the website in text, docx, Mp3, and DAISY format. On September 27th, we started a two-semester virtual General Class License Class that is now in its 9th week. This class is in the same format as the two-semester Technician Class we finished last April with interactive Zoom classes along with class recordings and handouts sent via email to students each week. The students are busy studying each week so they can be ready to take their tests at the end of the second semester.

Next September, we will start a virtual two-semester Extra Class License Class using the new question pool that will take effect on July 1 2024. If you want to be a part of this class, please send me an email at Handiham@allina.com to be added to the list for an application.

The Handiham Radio Club is getting radio active! Jerry, W0UH, our Handiham Radio Club president will hold the next monthly meeting on Sunday, December 3rd at 3:00pm Central Time. The Zoom link will go out to the radio club Groups.io list. If you have not yet joined the Handiham Radio Club, all current members of the Handiham Program are eligible to join. Just send an email to handiham@allina.com to let me know you want to be put on the email list for the club. Staying on that list allows you to keep up with everything that is happening in the club.

We put out new Handiham Program merchandise that includes tote bags, t-shirts, sweat shirts, hats, stickers, patches, and dog bandanas. If you are interested in ordering anything for yourself or for gifts, please let me know as soon as possible so we can make sure to ship it for a timely holiday arrival.


Lucinda AB8WF