Technician License Course – April 13, 20, & 27

Class information is available through Community Education

This class prepares the student to take the exam for an FCC Technician Class Amateur (Ham) Radio License. It combines live lectures, multimedia, and demonstrations of Amateur Radio equipment and activities. Lunch will be provided all three days. Please contact the instructor if there are any special dietary requirements. Prerequisite: students must purchase the textbook – “Ham Radio License Manual – Fourth Edition” and read at least the first four chapters prior to the first day of class. Contact the instructor ( if you need assistance in obtaining the book, and with any dietary restrictions.

The course fee is $30 and includes electronic copies of the presentation and review materials. A CDROM of the lecture materials is also provided. Classes administered through Community Education require pre-registration. If you prefer to register by phone call 507-328-4000. The course code is 7030.231.

Recommended Training for ARES Members

The following self-directed courses are available for free through FEMA.
ARES members are encouraged to take them in order to get familiarized with the Incident Command System in use nationally.

MN ARES also recommends the following courses:


NBEMS stands for ‘Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System’. It is becoming a widely accepted standard for amateur emcomm digital communications. We use NBEMS in our Thursday night net . These tutorials show how to set up and use NBEMS: Narrow Band Emergency Messaging Software (NBEMS)

FLDigi (soundcard modem) and FLMsg (message handler) are the two main applications needed to participate in NBEMS communications.
MT-63/2000L is the mode most often used for VHF/UHF NBEMS communication for Olmsted ARES (See the Thursdays@6:30PM SE MN Digital Net on  the 147.255 repeater)

Olivia 8/500 is the mode most often used for HF NBEMS communication for Minnesota ARES (See the Thursdays@8PM MN Digital Net on 3583.5 kHz USB).

[This post needs to be updated to be much more user friendly, thanks for your patience!]

Olmsted County Emergency Services Nets

An ARES net is activated when threatening situations warrant as determined by the National Weather Service in LaCrosse, Wisconsin, or by the Olmsted County or Rochester Emergency Operations Centers. Skywan nets are directed nets and all communications is controlled by the net control station (NCS) using net procedures. Contact Steve Wiebke (W0STV), for more information on becoming a ARES net control station operator.

The Olmsted county ARES net uses the Olmsted EOC 147.255 repeater, PL100.0 Hz, for skywarn and emergency event activation/information.  The 146.820, PL100.0 Hz, repeater is the backup for the 147.255 repeater and is available to provide additional ARES communications. A third back up repeater is the 146.625 PL 100.0 for redundancy and over flow traffic that can not be handled by the previous two repeaters..

An ARES information and training net is held every Sunday evening at 9:00 PM local time. Please see the Nets and Meetings page for net and repeater information. All registered ARES members are required to check into this net. Any licensed amateur radio operator may check into the net. Please listen first and follow the NCS check in procedures.

ARES net information links:

ARES Information

Olmsted County ARES Organization

The Olmsted county ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Service) organization provides emergency communications for real and simulated emergency events in southeast Minnesota.The ARES organization provides emergency communications support for VOAD, Channel One, the American Red Cross, Rochester Police Department, Rochester EOC, and Fire Deparment, the Olmsted County office of Emergency Management and the Mayo foundation.

Steve Wiebke (W0STV) 254-3993 is the Olmsted county ARES Emergency Coordinator (EC).

Active ARES members are amateur radio operators who have completed an ARES Registration Form. To become an active ARES member, simply complete and return the ARES Registration Form. Download the ARES Registration form PDF file to your PC. Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader. Fill out the form, and return it by doing one of the following:

  • Print out the completed form and mail it to:
    • RARC
      P.O. Box 1
      Rochester, MN 55903
  • Or, print out the completed form and bring it with you to an RARC club meeting, and deliver it to Steve Wiebke.
  • Or, save the completed PDF form, and email it to

The participation hours in ARES activities and nets determines the registered member’s position on the ARES A or B teams. All RARC club members are associate members of the Olmsted county ARES organization.

All active ARES memebers are encouraged to purchase an ARES vest. If you need an ARES vest or would like to become an active ARES member, please contact Steve

Any Olmsted ARES member that is available to provide communications support when ARES is activated is requested to contacting EC Steve Wiebke on the 147.255 PL100 repeater or at 254-3993. Please contact the following for additional Minnesota ARES and Olmsted county emergency management information:

  • Skip Jackson, KSØJ, Minnesota Section Manager (SM)
  • Daniel D. Anderson, KDØASX, Minnesota Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC)
  • Bill Osler, KØRGR, Minnesota Southeast District Emergency Coordinator (DEC).
  • Bob Wiles, ABØBW, Minnesota District 1 Assistant Emergency Coordinator.
  • Marvin Myers Jr, KCØCLC, Dodge County Emergency Coordinator (EC).
  • Capt Mike Bromberg, KDØEOB, Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Ops for Olmsted Cty
  • Greg Martin, Deputy Emergency Management Director for Olmsted County
  • Ken Jones, KD8HPX, Deputy Emergency Management Director for Rochester

ARES and related information links:

RARC Meeting Minutes – Jan 9th 2019

Treasurer’s Report 2019-01 

Opening Balance: $ 10,413.19 
Dues:    $ 180.00 
United Way:   
IBM:    $ 4.40 
PicNik    $ 25.00 
Postage Box Rent   $ 96.00 

RPU    $ 50.14 
Closing Balance:    $ 10,426.45 

Opening Balance:    $ 4,820.48 
Interest:    $ 0.03 
Closing Balance:    $ 4,820.51 

Total:    $ 15,282.96 

  • No president was elected at the December meeting, therefore we are looking for volunteers

Bob K0SIR volunteered to run for President.  We’re interested in making the the most dynamic and engaging year for the RARC, specifically socialization and programs.

Technical Committee:

  • Rochester EOC needs a printer, the city has donated all the equipment thus far.
  • Motion PASSED: would the club donate $100 towards a printer for the Rochester EOC.
  • Public service:

  • February 2nd is the Frozen Goose event at RCTC and SE Rochester
  • Sign up at the club webpage – need 8 people
  • Feb 23rd Ironwood Christian Ranch bike race.  Fat-tire bike races.  3-4 people needed to monitor the track.  Again sign up.
  • ARES 

  • ARESConnect is a national network – get connected with ARES anywhere in the country to volunteer for ARES related events.   Must register in order to be a full member of ARES.
  • Please get your e-mail to KD0YOZ or N0HZN for newsletter and e-mail reflector.
  • Events

  • No winter Field Day at the Rochester EOC this year – no people with access will be available.
  • Field Day:
  • Schaffer Academy would be an ideal location again. 
  • Still in need of a Field Day Coordinator
  • Contesting:
  • January ARRL VHF Contest is the 19th-21st – there are many categories available so you can compete on FM only.
  • Education:
  • Bill reports the next class will be April 20th Sign up through Community Education.
  • Other Business:

  • If a new licensee joins (with their free dues).
  • Motion PASSED: New licensee gets a full 12 months, then pro-rated by the half year dues the year following.  For example Licensed August 1st – December 31 would receive August-August membership and ½ dues at that point to fill out the rest of that year.
  • Introductions and meeting was adjourned at 7:05