NVARC Public Service Event

2015 RIDE to END Alzheimer's

July 18, 2015

Amateur Radio Operators -- for further information, contact Ralph Swick KD1SM.

For the seventh consecutive year the North Central Massachusetts Amateur Radio community is providing logistics and emergency communication support for the MA/NH Alzheimer's Association RIDE to END Alzheimer's. This event has four routes, the longest being a 100-mile bicycle ride through the towns of Ayer, Harvard, Bolton, Berlin, Boylston, West Boylston, Clinton, Lancaster, Sterling, Leominster, Shirley, Groton, Townsend, Pepperell, Dunstable, Hollis NH, Amherst NH, and Nashua NH on Saturday, July 12. Amateur Radio provides communications to over a dozen positions, both mobile and fixed locations.

This year's event is very similar to 2014; a bicycle ride consisting of 4 groups of riders. One group will follow a 100-mile route ("Century"), the second group a 62-mile route ("Metric Century"), the third group a 30-mile route, and the fourth group a 2 mile "Family Ride" route. Each route starts and finishes at Devens. The shorter routes follow the later segments of the longer routes for part of their length but include cut-offs. The Pit Stop numbers below correspond to the 100-mile route. The 62-mile route uses only Pits 3, 4, and 5. The 30-mile route uses Pits 3 and 6. The Family Ride is entirely within Devens.

Route Maps:

The following positions require radio operators:

Positions - Subject to change; ending times are only approximate
Tactical Name / Assignee Location Op Name Op Call Start End Notes
NCS/Devens Coordinator
Angela Floro
Devens Stan KD1LE 0530 1800
NCS/Ride Director
Autumn Hotaling
Devens Ralph KD1SM 0500 1800
St. Joseph
David Richard
Berlin Jim N8VIM 0630 0930 St. Joseph's Church
Century Pit 1
Rota Springs
Emma DeRubeis
Sterling Tom AB1GF 0730 1030 Rota Springs
Century Pit 2
River Court
Jim Galvin
W.Groton Dan
0830 1400 RiverCourt Residences
Century Pit 3
Metric/30 Pit 1
Hollis Depot
Bonnie Bigalke,
Melody Bushmich
Hollis NH Gary
0915 1345 Hollis Bus Depot
Century Pit 4
Metric Pit 2
Alpine Grove
Erik Holmberg,
Emily Hilker
Hollis NH Jim
1015 1515 Alpine Grove Banquet Hall
Century Pit 5
Metric Pit 3
Mill Street
Jordan Oster
Pepperell MA Tom K1JHC 1030 1345 18A Mill St.
Century Pit 6
30mile Pit 2
Support 1
Mark Richards
roving Mark K1MGY 0600 1800 Century
Support 2
Rich Schilder
roving Carsten KB1KTP 0600 1800 Century
Moto 1 roving Joseph N1QDZ 0600 1800 Century
Support 3
Austin Hodge
roving Ray KB1LRL 0800 1800 Metric
Support 4
Tim Chase
roving Tim KB1ZVR 0800 1800 Metric
Support 5
James Hotaling
roving Tim W0TJP 0800 1800 Metric
Support 6
Melissa Shirtcliff
roving Jim AB1WQ 0800 1800 Metric
Support 7
Kim L'Ecuyer
roving John KK1X 0930 1700 30-Mile
Support 8
Suzanne Salerno
roving Tim KC1AJJ 0930 1700 30-Mile
Support 9
Sara Daley
roving Tim KQ1Y 0930 1700 30-Mile

Frequency Plan

There will be a single controlled Net for the event, however the Net will be spread across several repeaters. All stations south of Devens should attempt to use F1 first. All stations north of Devens may find that F2 or F3 work better depending on location. F5 should also cover a large part of the course and may be the best between pits 4 (Hollis Depot) and 5 (Alpine Grove). F4 is available for those who have the capability; it may cover most of the course, depending on the mobile antennas used.

Mobiles must be prepared to operate on all of the 2 meter frequencies; please call NCS each time you change frequencies.

Thanks to the Central Mass Amateur Radio Association, to Paul WB1EWS, to Dave N1MNX, and to Bernie N1IMO for the use of their repeaters for this event.

F1 South Primary / North Secondary 146.970 Mhz, - offset, PL 114.8 thanks to CMARA
F2 North Primary / South Secondary 147.315 MHz, + offset, PL 100 (tbc) thanks to WB1EWS
F3 Alternate 147.345 MHz, + offset, PL 100 thanks to N1MNX
F4 Alternate 53.890 MHz, - offset, PL 100 thanks to N1MNX
F5 Alternate 146.730 MHz, - offset, PL 88.5 thanks to N1IMO

Pit Stop Operators

You may proceed directly to your assignments, no need to meet at Devens. On arrival, please check in with the Pit Captain (listed in the table above).

Please coordinate with the pit stop captain and the pit stop medical volunteer on exactly where they would like you to be stationed. If you have both a handheld and a mobile (in your vehicle), check on arrival to see where the handheld works.

All operators at pit stops should wear an orange or lime safety vest for identification purposes. The ideal vest will say "Radio" or "Radio Communications". If you have an orange cap please wear it. You should be able to use your mobile radio in your vehicle. Please arrange a parking location with the captain of your pit stop so that you are easily accessible to the pit stop personnel and to your vehicle. Most of the pits stops are not in HT range of the repeaters. Pit Stop messages will include updates on the volunteer status (e.g. missing volunteers) and reporting the arrival of the first riders.

Stay in contact with the Pit Stop crew; your responsibility is to relay information in both directions. General messages from NCS about missing riders need to be relayed to the Pit crew and issues the Pit crew is having may be relevant to NCS. If in doubt, ask the Pit Captain if you can relay a message to Devens Coordinator.

Instructions for Pit Stop Operators

  1. Do your best to stay in visual contact with the Pit Stop Captain or designee; the Pit Stop crew must know who you are and where you are at all times.
  2. Contact Net Control:
  3. Please identify by tactical name (the name of your pit stop) not number; four of pits are on more than one of the routes and the riders in each group will use different numbers when referring to them.
  4. Keep an eye on the number of SAG vehicles at the pit stop. When you have more than 3 or 4 SAGs in the pit stop please inform Net Control. Assist SAG vehicles that do not have a Ham by letting Net Control know when they arrive and leave.
  5. Pit Stop Ham and Captain should keep track of riders waiting for ride and the time they arrived, report this information to Net Control along with the rider number and reason for request, i.e. medical or just cannot finish.
  6. If you see a cyclist without their helmet, please help the pit crew remind them that it is mandatory that a helmet be worn at all times. Pit crews should not become confrontational with a participant. Please keep your emotions and temper in check at all time. Inappropriate language toward a participant, staff or volunteer is not acceptable; violators will be asked to leave the event.
  7. Please notify Net Control when you are away from the radio. Please use the Net Control Phone Number to relay any personal information concerning riders. Let Net Control guide you.
  8. You should also familiarize yourself with the RIDE's instructions to volunteers and the RIDE's instructions to the riders.

Roving Operators

Please meet your assignments at the Museum Field parking lot in Devens. The parking lot is at #29 Antietam Street between Sherman and Jackson Avenues.

All roving operators will need to bring a magmount antenna, mobile radio, and battery power sufficient for the day. You will also need to bring your lunch in case you and your driver are not able to stop at a pit stop when lunch is delivered there. You will be riding in other event volunteers' vehicles. Support vehicle messages will include requests to transport riders unable to finish. Medical vehicle messages will be requests for non-emergency first-aid. Riders will be instructed to call 911 in an emergency and then, if possible, to call NCS by phone at 978.785.6499. Make sure you program your radio for all available frequencies; the terrain occasionally puts even a near-by repeater in an RF shadow.

Instructions for all Rovers

Operators supporting roving vehicles, please observe the following and communicate it to the vehicle driver.

Your driver will have received a support kit that includes a 3-ring binder with full course details including maps, locations, and photos of each pit stop. You should browse through it to familiarize yourself with the kind of information it contains.

Your role is to help your SAG driver provide critical support to our cyclists and it is greatly appreciated. If your SAG driver has any questions at all your role is to help get answers from NCS (Devens Coordinator) as appropriate.

In addition to the binder your driver will have, please make note of the following information

  1. All communications must go through Net Control unless otherwise directed.
  2. Please notify Net Control when you arrive and when you leave a pit stop and use the pit tactical call to refer to the location. We need to know where you are at all times.
  3. If you come across a medical emergency CALL 911 first, then call Net Control. It is critical that proper medical support is provided immediately.
  4. We have a responsibility to all cyclists on the tour. If there is a medical emergency, please refrain from discussing it with other cyclists.
  5. Please do not speculate about an accident. It serves no purpose but to perpetuate unnecessary rumors.
  6. Know your location.
  7. Do not travel too close to cyclists. It can make them nervous.
  8. Do not travel in the breakdown lanes where cyclists are riding. This is dangerous.
  9. Please report your position, conditions (density of rider and vehicular traffic), direction of travel, and current mission ("routine patrol", "providing transport", "responding to call for assistance") frequently.

Precise Pit Stop Locations:

Pit Stop 1 "St. Joseph"
St. Joseph's Church, Berlin; intersection of Carter St. and Route 62 (52 West St.)
Captain: David Richard
Medical: Lenore Jackson-Pope
Pit Stop 2 "Rota Springs"
Rota Springs Ice Cream Stand, Sterling; 117 Chace Hill Road (1.2 miles north of 110)
Captain: Emma DeRubeis
Medical: Dianne DeRubeis
Pit Stop 3 "River Court"
RiverCourt Residences, 8 West Main St., Route 225 (at Townsend Road and Pepperell Road), West Groton.
Captain: Jim Galvin
Medical: Jo Anne Faer, Kimberly Ebb
Pit Stop 4 "Hollis Depot"
Hollis Bus Depot, Near 57 Silver Lake Rd., Hollis NH 03049
Captain: Bonnie Bigalke, Melody Bushmich
Medical: Jason Duval
Pit Stop 5 "Alpine Grove"
Alpine Grove Banquet Hall, 19 South Depot Rd. (Rt. 111A), Hollis NH
Captain: Erik Holmberg, Emily Hilker
Medical: Debbie Gibson
Pit Stop 6 "Mill Street"
18A Mill St., Pepperell MA
Captain: Jordan Oster
Medical: Barbara Fuller
Museum Field, 5 Antietam St., Devens
Medical: Christian Bugbee, Arleen Kulin

Additional details are available on the event site.

R. Swick, KD1SM
Updated: $Date: 2015-07-14 20:30:42 -0700 (Tue, 14 Jul 2015) $