Pre-Winter Field Day 2017 was held the weekend just prior to WFD; it was our alpha-test. It was deemed best to test the deployment of antennas at the site, and under the actual conditions that we could be facing the next weekend. All-in-all, it was a success. However, we knew we had kinks to work out, since it was our first WFD. This successful test sparked an even greater enthusiasm for WFD 2017.
Our Winter Field Day (WFD) Committee consisted of Chairman John Plecki (KD9BYW), Brian Rudnick (KD9EOL), Laura Plecki (KD9EID), Mel Marcus (NE9A), Dick Lieber (WA9NNN), and Kelvin Jackson (W9BBQ). The Pre-WFD overnight squad consisted of KD9BYW, KD9EOL, KD9EID, and NE9A.
For it being the 3rd weekend in January 2017, the weather was definitely on our side. Although it was a bit murky following a few days of rain. Afternoon temperatures on January 21st rose into the upper 50s to lower 60s, area-wide. The official high temperature at O’Hare Airport topped out at 59-degrees, just 3-degrees shy of the record 62-degrees for this date, set back 111 years ago in 1906. Even after dark, the temperature was in the lower 40s to the upper 30s.
Antennas went up, and stations were set up inside the cabin. At night, we had guests come out to see the campsite, and our progress in the great outdoors. Guests included Steven Hill (W9DSQ), his lovely wife, Patty, and their granddaughter, Taliyah, their niece, Kiara, and two grandsons, Alex and Adonis; also in attendance were Dave Kossart (KB9EPL) and Rich Bacorn (KB9NTX). Brian (KD9EOL) started up the grill, and served up skirt steak fajitas for all to enjoy. Afterwards, W9DSQ hosted The Original Preservation Net at 9 PM from KD9EOL’s ham-o-can from inside the cabin.
The evening ended well, and we were all hoping for the same type of weather for the official WFD, the following weekend. Fingers were crossed.