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The 2020 and 2021 Public Service seasons were significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are seeing event planning starting for 2022. Please watch for announcements about the 2022 schedule; see our Public Service events schedule.

New in October 2021: NVARC YouTube channel. We plan to post recordings of our hybrid (in-person and Zoom) monthly meetings in this channel.


Technician License Classes to be offered in Pepperell

NVARC is offering a free amateur radio licensing course beginning on January 31st. The eight night course will prepare students for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Technician licensing exam that will be offered at the completion of the course. The Technician level radio operator’s license is the first of three amateur licenses offered by the FCC. Each license has increased levels of operator privileges.

The course consists of twice weekly sessions beginning on Monday, January 31st, and meeting on Mondays and Wednesdays for four weeks (January 31, February 2, 7, 9, 14, 16, 21 and 23). The course will be held at the Pepperell Community Center, 59 Main St, Pepperell, MA 01463. Sessions will start at 7PM and last for 2 hours. An FCC license exam will be scheduled for the end of the sessions. The course is free, but there will be an FCC required $15 testing fee if you take the exam. It is suggested students purchase the ARRL Ham Radio License Manual, Level 1, Technician, 4th ed. The study guide may be purchased from the instructor for $30 or online from the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) or Amazon.

This course is open to all, there are no age limits. Pre-registration is required, no walk-ins will be allowed. To register you must contact the instructor, Bruce Blain, K1BG, at (508) 341-5124 or via email at bruce.blain@charter.net.

NVARC General Meetings

NVARC general meetings are open to all interested participants. The general meetings are scheduled for the third Thursday of the month at 2330 UTC.

For the duration of the COVID distancing guidelines the NVARC monthly meetings had been held in distributed on-line form via Zoom. In September 2021 we resumed in-person meetings and kept Zoom to allow remote attendance. If you are interested in attending you may send email to <meetings at n1nc.org> requesting the teleconference details. NVARC thanks Medtronic, Inc for providing the teleconferencing services under their employee volunteer support program for non-profit organizations.

NVARC Monday Night Net

The NVARC Monday Night Net is re-convening as of October.

Volunteers to be Net Control may contact Skip K1NKR. Net preamble et cetera can be found in the Members' area.

FCC Public Notice DA 21-73

The FCC reminds us in Enforcement Advisory DA 21-73

Amateur and Personal Radio Services licensees and operators may not use radio equipment to commit or facilitate criminal acts

See the full text of DA 21-73.

Field Day 2019

NVARC Field Day site in Pepperell MA; view from feeding tents across the site to the tower trailer with tri-bander at 50 feet

Field Day 2019; NVARC is class 2 Alpha plus a VHF station. We were pleased to have several new members participating with "proper" overnight accomodations. See more Field Day 2019 photos. Read more about Field Day from the ARRL.

Thinking Day On The Air 2019

Bruce K1BG explaining HF radio to a group of five young girl scouts

Thinking Day On The Air 2019: NVARC assists several Girl Scout troops in organizing a Thinking Day On The Air event in Tyngsboro MA. More photos of TDOTA. For details see 2017 article by Skip Youngberg, K1NKR describing Thinking Day On The Air [HTML version] [PDF version].

Field Day 2018

Bob W1XP squatting at the back of his van with an HF radio after participating in the HamSci satellite atmospheric test

Field Day 2018: NVARC again ran in class 2 Alpha plus a VHF station. NVARC was invited to participate in a HamSci experiment with the Canadian CASSIOPE/ePOP satellite. Here Bob W1XP smiles after sending the test transmissions to the satellite. Read the HamSCI press release on the CASSIOPE/ePOP HF Field Day experiment. More Field Day photos are available.

Groton Road Race

Groton Road Race; 5k runners pass KD1LE at NCS

5K runners pass Net Control with Stan KD1LE cheering them on in the rain. 29 April 2018

Thinking Day On The Air

Thinking Day On The Air 2018, Shirley MA

Girl Guide Thinking Day On The Air February 2018, Shirley MA; Bruce K1BG explains HF. More photos of TDOTA. For details see 2017 article by Skip Youngberg, K1NKR describing Thinking Day On The Air [HTML version] [PDF version].

HamSCI and the Eclipse

Aerial view of MIT Haystack Observatory, Westford MA

On August 21st the path of a solar total eclipse traverses the continental US from west to east. Scientists are interested in testing whether signal propagation data collected by Amateur Radio stations can be useful in earth atmosphere science. NVARC member Stan KD1LE has created a presentation to encourage Ham Radio participation in the HamSCI eclipse experiment taking place during this eclipse in the US. Stan has made PowerPoint version of his presentation available as well.

Field Day 2017

Leo K1LK at an HF radio with CW paddles at the ready

Field Day 2017 was great fun. NVARC ran in class 2 Alpha plus a VHF station. Leo K1LK operates the CW station after preparing and serving our meals. More Field Day photos are available.


The Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club (NVARC) was formed in Groton, Massachusetts, in the spring of 1992 and has grown from the original 13 founders to over 60 members. While our membership is centered in the towns of Groton and Pepperell, Massachusetts, our membership includes residents from many communities in north central Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire.

The purpose of NVARC is to facilitate the exchange of information and general cooperation relating to Amateur Radio and to conduct club programs and activities to advance the interest and welfare of Amateur Radio in the general community. For more information on public service events utilizing Amateur Radio in which NVARC participates, please visit the Public Service Events page. The FoxFinder, described in April 2001 QST, is a project of several NVARC members. The Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club also sponsors the Worked All Massachusetts Counties Award.

We have participated in the ARISS program by providing communications for the Hawthorne Brook Middle School to talk to the International Space Station November of 2005. The club organizes radio support for several public service events in our local area. We regularly participate in Field Day; see photos from Field Day 2006. In 2009 we created a new activity to challenge members; the NVARC Lantern Battery Challenge©.

NVARC is a Special Service Club of the ARRL, the US national association for Amateur Radio. Special Service Clubs are actively involved in new Ham development and training, public relations, emergency communications, technical advancement, and operating activities. One of our non-radio activities is the 2 mile stretch of route 119 in Groton and Pepperell along which we pick up trash monthly as part of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Adopt-A-Highway program. A sign at the east end of our section provides constant publicity.


NVARC meets the third Thursday of each month except July and August at the Pepperell Community Center. Occasionally a meeting is relocated to the Pepperell Lawrence Library when another event is using the Community Center. The Signal will usually announce when this is the case, as will the Library event calendar. The meetings start at 7:10 PM. The meetings are social with a guest speaker or program for each meeting.


NVARC members have engaged in several special projects to benefit the Amateur Radio Community. Materials are available on this site for:

In 2015, NVARC first supported Thinking Day On The Air, which is organized by the World Association of Girl Scouts and Girl Guides. A story about our Thinking Day activity appeared in ARRL News in April 2015. Our 2016 effort was even bigger and expanded further in 2017 supporting two troops. If your club would like to support a TDOTA event download our introductory Thinking Day briefing.

NVARC also hosts the Web site for the Central Mass 2 Meter (traffic) Net as of April 2007.


The club provides its monthly newsletter the Signal and yearbook to all members. While the club does mail some printed newsletters to members, as exchanges with other clubs, and to ARRL officials, we encourage interested readers to take advantage of the electronic version.


NVARC welcomes all persons with an interest in Amateur Radio. Yearly membership dues are $15 for an individual and $20 for a family and include the monthly newsletter either electronically or in printed form mailed to you. To join fill out a membership application and submit it to our Treasurer with your dues at a monthly meeting or send it to NVARC, PO Box 900, Pepperell, MA. 01463. In November 2008 the Board initiated a recognition program to acknowledge contributions of individual Club members in achieving the 5 principles of the Amateur Radio Service.


President Bruce Blain, K1BG
Vice President Phil Erickson, W1PJE
Secretary John Bielefeld, K1JEB
Treasurer Ralph Swick, KD1SM
Director Skip Youngberg, K1NKR (2020-2023)
Director Jim Hein, N8VIM (2021-2024)
Director Sean Pearson, KC1ONO (2022-2025)


Newsletter Editor George Kavanagh, KB1HFT
Public Information Officer George Kavanagh, KB1HFT
Emergency Coordinator (open)
Librarian Peter Nordberg, N1ZRG
Property Master John Griswold, KK1X
Awards Manager John Griswold, KK1X

N1NC Trustee Bruce Blain, K1BG


"What is Ham Radio? by the ARRL. "Amateur Radio (ham radio) is a popular hobby and service that brings people, electronics and communication together." read more ...

NVARC has created a brochure, "Amateur Radio: Hobby of a Lifetime and a Public Service", intended to explain to non-Hams some of the reasons why Amateur Radio is an important part of the community.

"You Can Have This Capability for Yourself and Your Family" describes some things you can do with Ham Radio and how to get a Ham Radio License. ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, provides a page to help you find an Amateur Radio License Exam in Your Area.

The Eastern Massachusetts ARRL Section and Western Massachusetts ARRL Section Web sites provide information from and about the local ARRL field organization, including public service and club activities.

Webmaster, nvarc_n1nc at n1nc.org
"Lantern Battery Challenge" is copyright © 2010 Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club
Updated: 2022-05-05T23:40:39Z
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