Greetings to the Hams of Michigan:
On April 1st, Michigan hams will embark on the most ambitious on the
air project ever. Of course, I am talking about Michigan State Parks on
the Air or MSPOTA as we refer to it.
Previous State Park activations on the air around the country have
focused on a single weekend.
The Michigan State Parks system as a whole will be 100 years old in
2019. Some of our parks actually began operation in 1917. Hence, the
celebration will begin in 2017 and continue through 2019. That is three
years of State Parks on the Air! Lots of time for activators and chasers
This event includes 117 MDNR Parks & Recreation sites including State
Parks, Recreation Areas, Scenic Sites and State Trails rotated over the
3 years. That adds up to about 50 parks across the state active in each
One park in each of the 4 Lower Peninsula regions will be active in all
event years as well as all 24 of the Upper Peninsula parks. The
schedule is such that regardless of what region of the state you are in
there will always be parks to activate during the event.
One of the most important takeaways from the event rules is that self
supporting antennas are required and that NO antennas can be affixed to
trees in any of our parks. Cross contamination from tree to tree and
from park to park is a serious issue. Be sure to be an asset as opposed
to being a liability to the parks system during your activations.
The primary source of information is www.mspota.org and contains
everything you need to get out in the great outdoors and activate some
parks as well as information for the chasers from around the state, the
country and the world!
Information is available on the website for QSO content requirements,
log submission, and QSL process. QSL’s will be available via SASE.
For chasers, working the parks early will have an additional benefit.
The DNR Parks and Recreation Department will be printing park-specific
QSL cards for each park. It is expected that these park-specific cards
will have a picture of that park on the face of the card. Once those
500 cards are gone, then QSL’s will revert to a generic MSPOTA card.
Who can contact all of the Michigan Parks early enough to obtain
park-specific QSL Cards? Who knows, there may even some sort of an
award for the first ones to complete this achievement!
We all remember the fun of the ARRL Centennial QSO Party and the ARRL
National Parks on the Air events. Now it is time for the Michigan ARRL
section to showcase our beautiful state parks and get radioactive!!!
Have fun, follow the rules, and stay safe.