Meeting History

2021 Meeting Schedule

Date Speaker Topic
January 13 Dr. Seth Shostak, N6UDK The Quest for the Ultimate DX — Are We Alone in the Universe?
February 10 Gary Johnson, NA6O  “How to Reduce RF noise Before It Gets into Your Transceiver”
Download PDF Presentation
March 10 Jim Aspinwall, NO1PC “Elmering in the Age of Devices”
April 14 Brian Tanner, AG6GX  “Art of Voice Communications: Techniques for Technician & HF-class licensees” Download PDF Presentation
May 12 Kristen McIntyre, K6WX “SWR? Who Cares!”  (SWR myths and misconceptions)
June 9 Clint Bradford, K6LCS How to Work Amateur Satellites with your HT
July 14   No Meeting
August 21   It’s official.  Sunnyvale has opened their picnic facilities for summer reservations, and we’ve been approved for Baylands Park Pickleweed Picnic Area.  So mark your calendar for WVARA’s Annual BBQ on August 21 starting at 11am.  This coincides with the North America QSO Party / SSB, so we’ll be making contacts during our BBQ via a portable station. 
September 8 Dean Wood, N6DE California QSO Party. Our speaker will be Dean Wood, N6DE, who will update us on the latest changes to the California QSO Party. This very fun event occurs the first weekend in October. Dean will likewise cover the various ways that WVARA members can have fun participating in this great contest.
October 13 Rex Vokey, KE6MT Our Oct 13 presentation will be Summits On The Air with Rex Vokey, KE6MT. Rex is will cover the basics of SOTA as well as some tips and tricks for those operating either at home or in the field. He’ll also give a short report on his recent first-activation of a backcountry summit called Parker Peak.


Rex is the California (W6) Association Manager for Summits on the Air and has been a ham since 2015. He gets out to do summits big and small whenever he can, operating both QRP and portable QRO (100 watts) from mountaintops.

November 10 Steve Sergeamt, KC6ZKT Winter Field Day Plans, Elections. Here is a link to Steve’s Presentation PDF
December 18   Holiday Party 11:00am – 1:00pm Sunnyvale’s Baylands Park, near Pickleweed Place. You can see all the information Here.

2020 Meeting Schedule

January 8Steve Sergeant, KC6ZKTWinter Field Day Plans
February 12Ron Quan, KI6AZBTroubleshooting Electronic Circuits
March 11Bill Fehring, W9KKNBill’s Excellent Adventure at Contest Station ZF1A  
April 8 Ed Fong, WB6IQN  DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) Due to the coronavirus, the April WVARA meeting will NOT be held at the Red Cross Building. Instead, we will hold a virtual meeting via Zoom at 7pm on Wednesday, April 8.    At this month’s meeting Edison Fong, WB6IQN, will bring us up to speed on DMR (Digital Mobile Radio).  This mode is getting really popular.  The radios cost about $100-$150 depending on the quality you want.  All of them  also have conventional FM.  DMR is a full digital format that is interfaced via the internet where one can 24/7 talk all over the world.  The dream of working DX sitting on your couch is here.  Since it is an open system originally set up  by Motorola there are over 15 manufacturers of DMR radios – both hand held and mobiles.  Learn how to get register as a DMR user, where to purchase a radio, how to program the radio and talk to the world without depending on propagation conditions.   Ed is a design consultant and has worked at Loral Space System, Microsoft and National Semiconductor. He has 25 years of experience in analog design for communications, data conversion and RF systems. Fong has 12 issued patents and has published more than 40 papers. He is a senior member of the IEEE. He also is on the faculty of UC Santa Cruz Silicon Valley, where he teaches RF Wireless Communications and I/O Design Fundamentals. 
May 13George Zafiropoulos (KJ6VU) Virtual presentation on PackTennas — lightweight, compact, portable HF antenna systems ideal for a simple, solo Field Day.  George will tell us the story of these antennas, explain their design, and give tips on how to get the most from them.
June 10Jim DeLoach, WU0ITales of an Alaskan Field Day Adventure.
JulyNo Meeting 
August 15Annual WVARA BBQCancelled due to COVID-19
September 9Dean Wood, N6DECalifornia QSO Party. See all the information in this Post    
October 14David Brown, WR6ZFun on 900 MHz, Here is a link to the presentation PDF.
November 11Keith Snyder, KI6BDRAt this month’s meeting, Keith Snyder (KI6BDR) will give a virtual presentation on the Russian Woodpecker Over the Horizon Radar – A Real Blast from the Past.   I’m really looking forward to this one since many of us older hams remember encountering this signal on-the-air.   In addition, Steve KC6ZKT will give us an update on plans for Winter Field Day and how you can get involved.   (Winter Field Day will be January 30/31).   Keith’s Presentation Part 1 PDF. Part 2 PDF
December 9Steve Sergeant, KC6ZKTWVARA will not be holding a holiday party this year.  Instead, we will hold a standard monthly Zoom meeting on Wednesday, December 9.  Steve Sergeant, KC6ZKT, will tell us about: “Repeaters To Go… Wild”.   Zoom details will be released via the WVARA email reflector.  If you aren’t yet a WVARA member and would like to attend this meeting, feel free to contact Jim Peterson, K6EI, via You can get all the information on our main page  

2019 Meeting Schedule

Date Speaker Topic
January 9    
February 13 Dave Casler, via Zoom Digital HF Modes!
March 13 Erik Swartz From Elecraft Will Be updating us on “Everything Elecraft”
April 10 Kristen, our Vice-Director From the ARRL will be telling us about what’s happening with the League in 2019
May 8 Jim Peterson Getting us ready for our upcoming Field Day!
June 12 Jack Jack is going to be giving us some “Tips” on “Contesting” just in time for Field Day!
July 10 No Meeting  
August 17 Annual WVARA BBQ When: 11am – 2pm, Saturday, Aug 17. Sunnyvale’s Baylands Park, Pickleweed Place #1
(When you get to Baylands Park, turn right after going through the main gate.) All information on our Activities Page.
September 11 Mark Kemp Piezoelectric Antennas
October 9 Clay Couger, N5YJZ Join us to hear about Clay’s suitcase DX expedition and communications support for International Health Services (IHS) work in Honduras.
November 13 Eric  Guthrie Presentation by Eric  Guthrie on some of the DXPeditions & people he has interviewed over the past Several Years! Officer Elections
December 11 WVARA Holiday Party
Holiday Christmas Party (set-up at 6pm, dining at 7pm)
 2018 Meeting schedule
January 10
 John Miller, K6MM
 Wake Atoll DXpedition
February 14
Bill Fehring, W9KKN
HF Digital Modes
March 14
Hiroki Kato, AH6CY
April 11    
May 9
Jim Peterson, K6EI
Everything Field Day
June 13 TBD TBD
No Meeting
August 18


When:  11am – 2pm, Saturday, Aug 18
Where:  Sunnyvale’s Baylands Park, Pickleweed Place #1
September 12  TBD TBD
October 10 John Miller K6MM – Hot DX from Baker Island
November 14 TBD TBD
December 12
Annual Holiday Party.
We will be meeting at the American Red Cross, on the corner of 1st Street And Plumeria At 7:00pm in our usual meeting room.
The affair is, as usual, a “Pot Luck” where we are treated to some Great “Special” dishes that our members bring to delight our tastebuds each year!
People with Last Names beginning A-M please bring a “Main Dish” And People whose Last Names beginning M-Z Please bring a dessert!
We have some Great “Door Prizes” this year, with some “One-Of-A-Kind” Items That Have Never Been Available At Any Of our Holiday Parties in years past!
Please arrive early, to help set-up the tables if you can.
All members And their guests are Welcome to attend our Holiday Party, So Come One And Come All, To our Best Party Of the Year!
Hope to see You There!
2019 Vice President elect
West Valley Amateur Radio Association
2017 Meeting schedule
January 10
John Miller, K6MM
Wake Atoll DXpedition
January 19   Annual Winter Banquet hosted by the Foothill Amateur Radio Society (FARS) at Michael’s restaurant in Shoreline Park. Additional information is at
February 14
March 14
April 11 Hiroki Kato The Paraset story, and how it was a part of WW2
May 10
Jim Peterson, K6EI
Everything Field Day
June 14 TBD TBD
No Meeting


 See all the information on our activities page.
September 12  TBD TBD
October 10 TBD  TBD
November 14 TBD TBD
December 12

2016 Meeting schedule

January 13
Paul Wesling, KM6LH
The Origins of Silicon Valley: Roots in Ham Radio
February 10
Keith Snyder, KI6BDR
Maximum Permissible Exposure Limit versus Near Field Radiation from a 2-Meter Mobile Antenna
March 9
Ralph Simpson
The History/Technology of the Enigma Cipher Machine in World War II
April 13
Kenneth Finnegan, W6KWF
Sun-Powered Radios: Harnessing Solar Power in the Name of Amateur Radio
May 11
Jim Peterson, K6EI
All Things Field Day
June 8
Jim Peterson, K6EI
Ham Radio Potpourri: Getting High Schoolers Excited about Ham Radio, WVARA in Social Media, and Field Day & De Anza Flea Market Planning
No Meeting
August 20
The annual WVARA BBQ will be from 11am to 2pm on Saturday, August 20, in Sunnyvale’s Baylands Park at the Pickleweed picnic site. Visitors are welcome. Complete information on our Activities Page
September 14
Edison Fong, WB6IQN
Tri-Band J-Pole Antenna
October 12
Don Ferguson, AI6RE
Amateur High Altitude Ballooning
November 9    
December 14   HOLIDAY PARTY!

2015 Meeting schedule

Date Speaker Topic
January 14 Ed Fong, WB6IQN History of Handie-Talkie Radios
February 11 Ron Quan, KI6AZB Electronics from the ground up
March 11 Kevin Reid, AG6YO A Visual Introduction to Digital Signal Processing for SDR
April 8 George Williams, N6NKT The In’s and Out’s of Our Local Red Cross
May 13 Jim Peterson, K6EI All Things Field Day
June 10 Bill AE6JV, Jim K6EI, Bobby KA4VBF, George N6NKT Get Radioactive with WVARA
July No Regular Meeting  
August 15 BBQ 11am-2pm Baylands Park BBQ & NAQP-SSB Operation
September 9 Steve Stearns, K6OIK The Joy of (Antenna) Matching
October 14 Bobby Barnett, KA4VBF Highlights of WVARA’s VHF and CQP Expeditions
November 11 Kristen McIntyre, K6WX The Mighty Transistor – What’s so great about transistors?
December 9 Potluck Holiday Party at the meeting room Setup at 6:30pm, Dinner at 7pm

2014 Meeting schedule

Date Speaker Topic
January 8 Jim Peterson, K6EI All Things Field Day *
February 12 Bill Ruck, W6VSY Radio On The High Seas
March 12 Wayne Burdick, N6KR Elecraft Night at WVARA
April 9 Jim Peterson, K6EI Low Band DX Antennas: The Good, the
Bad, and the Ugly
May 14 Jim Peterson, K6EI All Things Field Day
June 11 Bill Frantz, AE6JV Hands-On Construction: Battery Status Indicator Kit
July No Regular Meeting  
August 13 No Regular Meeting  
August 16 BBQ 11am-2pm Baylands Park, Pickleweed Site BBQ & NAQP-SSB Operation
September 10 Jim Peterson, K6EI Field Day Highlights & California QSO Party: Plans and Ideas
October 8 Jim Peterson, K6EI Fun on 160M!
November 12    
December 10 Pot Luck Holiday Party at the meeting location
Setup at 6:30pm, Dinner at 7pm

* See meeting page for pre-meeting location.

2013 Meeting schedule

Date Speaker Topic
January 9 George Williams, N6NKT 3D2C DXpedition With A Newbie Twist
February 13 Mike Lavelle, K6ML Introduction to Microwave Amateur Radio
March 13 Ron Quan, KI6AZB Build Your Own Transistor Radios
April 10 Jim Deloach, WU0I Ham Radio in Ethiopia
May 8 Jim Peterson, K6EI All Things Field Day
June 12    
July No Meeting  
August 17 Picnic at Baylands Picnic Flyer
September 11 Kristen McIntyre, K6WX TBD
October 9 Dave Flack, W6DLF and Dave Crocker, W6VYC QRPeditions
November 13 Russ Bentson, K6KLY Meteor Scatter Using FSK441
December 11 Pot Luck Holiday Party at the meeting location Setup 6:30, Dinner 7:00`