National Capital Chapter 70 - Ottawa, Canada



Minutes of Meeting September 17th, 2002 Best Western Macie's Hotel

  • With 63 members and guests in attendance Gus Holtz VE3VK, in the absence of Gerry King VE3GK, welcomed all and introduced the head table. Gerry is recovering from quadruple by-pass surgery, which he had on the 28th of August. Gus advised that we have two new members, Gary Meyers KY0B and Paul Reed VE2LR, neither of whom were able to attend.


  • Unfortunately we have two silent keys; Richard Paterson VA3EY who passed away on May 24th, 2002 and John Athey VE3GS/VE2GSX on May 25th, 2002. In ill health is George Collins VE3FJO.
  • Croft VE3CT noted that the QCWA HQ board meeting will take place in about 4 weeks time and at that time there will likely be much more to report. He thanked everyone for voting for himself and George VE3BNO. Travel costs have escalated exponentially and he and George must pay these costs out of their own pocket. He noted that George VE3BNO received the second highest number of votes. Croft's wife Elizabeth is undergoing tests to determine if surgery will be required and the drugs she is currently taking are taking a lot out of her. The QSO Party rules failed to get into the Journal but there are no changes from last year.
  • Gus congratulated Doug VE3XK on being reelected as the RAC Director for Ontario North and for the great amount of work he has done for the amateur radio fraternity.
  • Ted VE3LV has a number or copies of the History Book available for $10.00 each.


  • Motion to approve the Minutes of the May 21st, 2002 meeting was made by John Barnhardt VE3ZOV, seconded by Bob Zieman VE3ATN. Carried.

  • A Treasurer's Report was presented by Keith VE3GFI
                        Bank Balance on May 21st, 2002                     $1711.86
                        Receipts                                             227.00
                        Expenditures                                        1002.73
                        Bank Balance on September 17th, 2002               $ 936.13
    Motion of acceptance of the Treasurer's Report was made by Keith VE3GFI; seconded by Jim VE3IQ. Carried.

  • Year Pin Presentations:
    Doug Leach VE3XK presented year pins to members. New member pin to Paul Reed VE2LR (absent); 45 year pin to John Gilbert VE3CXL; 50 year pins to Ken Holt VE3VC (absent), Gerry King VE3GK (absent); 55 year pins to Keith Bedal VE3GFI, Ralph Cameron VE3BBM (absent) and Brice Wightman VE3EDR; 65 year pins to Eric Illott VE3XE, Rod Newkirk W9BRD/VA3ZBB and Ted Turner VE3LV and 70 year pins to Jim Jarvis VE3TI, and Bill Rieveley VA3AWJ.

    Guest Speaker

  • Our Guest Speaker, Neil Carleton VE3NCE was introduced by Doug VE3XK. Neil worked for nearly twenty years for Canadian Museums in Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia and Ottawa. He was instrumental in producing Canada's first set of commemorative postage stamps on minerals. His monthly radio program on collecting postage stamps on the topic of radio was heard around the world from Quito Ecuador. He is a family man with three children. He is now teaching in R. Tait McKenzie public school in Almonte. As a millennium project an application was submitted for a school contact with the International Space Station.

  • Neil told us he has spent the last ten years in the classroom. If you visited his classroom in addition to the usual science equipment such as a microscope and a computer you would find a short wave listening center as well as an amateur radio station. Radio in his classroom started in his first year of teaching. He sent out a proposal requesting the donation of Panasonic equipment to start a radio center in the classroom, which resulted in obtaining two short wave receivers and two tape recorders. The presentation of the equipment by the Canadian rep was a big event and made the news in the Almonte Gazette.

  • The next year he started a short wave listening club as part of a grade 5 reading listening and writing program where they would write and send letters to international short wave broadcasting stations. Both boys and girls thought receiving reply QSL cards was cool. On a large world map they kept track of the stations they were listening to. The next year he had short wave listening both as a classroom activity and an after school club activity with students who were 10 and 11 years old. He wrote a feature about using short wave listening in the classroom that was published by the Ontario Public School Teachers Federation as a special summer pullout feature in their magazine. This was one of his projects to help promote radio in the classroom. He also started an international network of teachers that used short wave listening or amateur radio in their classrooms. Notices and news about the project appeared in many publications including Passport to Worldwide Radio, DX Ontario and The Canadian Amateur. Information was also broadcast by international stations on short wave. After receiving letters and phone calls from sixteen different countries he started an international newsletter called Shortwave in the Classroom where teachers around the world shared ideas. He created a project called the case of the mystery mail. Students in the radio club would exchange a parcel of clues and objects from their local community with a mystery class somewhere else in the world. The address and the stamps were taken off and all the clues and objects laid out. The students had to be sleuths to determine where in the world they came from. Once they figured out the country, region or community they would look for an international broadcasting station from that country. There is a certain magic about radio that appeals to students about 10 to 13 years old. When you show them how to use a short wave receiver and actually tune in and hear a voice from another part of the world something magic really happens. Even when the weather is nice outside so they can play soccer or whatever they still want to carry on with their weekly radio club meeting. He tries to get families involved by inviting them to a meeting where students show mom and dad how to use a short wave receiver to travel across time zones and countries to hear voices from around the world. In response to letters he sent to suppliers outlining how he used radio in the classroom they have provided Panasonic and Grundig short wave receivers. Writing to international broadcasting stations requesting program and frequency schedules and sending reception reports for QSL cards has always been a part of the club activities. He and his students have been interviewed by international broadcasting stations around the world from Cuba to Switzerland. The kids would always be happy to talk on the phone and tell them why it was exciting to have radio in the classroom. They had an interview from a station in Quito Ecuador and it was really exciting listening to their own voices when it was broadcast. He was invited to be a keynote speaker at an international broadcasting conference in Atlanta Georgia. As broadcasters they were very interested to hear how a classroom teacher could actually use radio in the classroom. On moving to a new teaching position at Almonte he started a new radio club with a good mixture of boys and girls from grades four to eight. They always had a globe on hand to determine where the station was and to trace the great circle signal path. On a Saturday night of a broadcast from Ecuador they had a special club meeting with family members. They listened to their own kid's voices being broadcast around the world. Then the letters started coming, one after the other, and the kids were so excited. Over a 3-week period the students received 32 reception reports from a dozen countries. It was a lot of fun to prepare and mail out a special QSL card. It was at this time that he took and passed the amateur exam and got his license and the club became the short wave listening and amateur radio club. On fathers day last year the members of the short wave and amateur radio club visited VE3JW at the Museum of Science and Technology. All the students had a chance to get on air. They thought amateur radio was pretty cool.

  • Through an anonymous donation, HF vertical and trapped dipole antennas were professionally installed on the school. Many local amateurs in the area were a great help with the short wave radio and amateur club. They donated equipment and helped students get on air experience. On November 23rd last year at 5:46 am they became the 2nd Canadian School to have students speak via amateur radio to an astronaut in the International Space Station. A year ago in February an application was submitted. When a phone call came in November they had less than three weeks to get ready. Each day at twelve noon the nine participating students, one student from kindergarten up through grade eight would practice on air asking questions with Chuck VE3FEJ on the other side of town being the astronaut. By the fourth day they had overcome their nervousness and by the sixth day were having a lot of fun. By 5:30 am on the eventful day there were over 400 people in the gym who came out to support the project. A map of the hemisphere was projected on the wall to follow the path of the space station. At 5:43 VE3AKV, the contact coordinator, started to call. Bob created some drama, as there was no answer as he was 3 minutes early. Then they heard Frank Culbertson answer Bob's call. The first student from kindergarten was startled with all the audience being present but when Neil whispered his question in his ear the contact went on smoothly. A student from each grade level stepped up to the microphone and asked their question. Everything went very quickly and there was time left so Neil asked Frank if when he was in grade six did he ever have any idea that he might be an astronaut. Frank told everyone in the gym that he does remember those years and space was in the news. There was a reading series that he read every page of and his mom kept them where he had underlined the word astronaut. He had decided back then he was going to be an astronaut and here he was telling this story as commander of the space station A special newsletter was prepared to thank the many volunteers that made it all happen. Each of the students were presented by the school council with a special commemorative amateur radio space station plaque which had the student name and grade and the student question engraved on it. Afterwards in talking with the team Neil realized he had little memory of the event. It was only by talking about it with all those involved was he able to get the whole picture of what actually took place. But he does remember thinking WOW this is unbelievable. Later in the year at a staff meeting he received an award from the Upper Canada District School Board for coordinating an event that went beyond the classroom and he was asked to address the board of trustees about the project. His experience with children at school tells him that short wave listening and amateur radio are a great way to reach out and bring part of the world and space into the classroom.

  • Doug VE3XK thanked Neil for his presentation.
  • Clare VE3NPC thanked Neil for his presentation.

Gerry King  (VE3GK)                                                                 Clare Fowler (VE3NPC)
President  225-3426           WebPage -                Secretary. 730-1081
1152 Tara Drive                                                                     16 Fairbairn St.
Ottawa, Ont., K2C 2H2         VE3QCW on Thursday. 2000 hrs 147.03 (VE3TEL)          Ottawa, Ont., K1S 1T3

Thursdays at 0900 hrs - Breakfast Embassy West Motor Hotel - Consulate Cafe


Last modified: September 18, 2014