Sawnee Amateur Radio Association

An amateur radio club for the Forsyth County Georgia Area

Welcome to the Sawnee Amateur Radio Association


SARA is one of the premier clubs in the North Georgia area. Presently, we have over fifty active members. The club and its members are actively involved in many different amateur radio activities. Some members enjoy just rag-chewing, or operating CW, SSB, VHF SSB, or QRP. Others enjoy chasing DX, or working satellites, or building equipment and antenna systems.

The clubs main emphasis is to assist local communities with special events and their communications needs. We also like to promote the public awareness of the ARRL Field Day event held every June. SARA has been honored with two national “First Place” finishes in our class, during past Field Day events.

If you are just starting out in amateur radio, we invite you to one of our upcoming events or meetings. Let us introduce you to our hobby while you visit one of the best clubs in the area.

August 13 Meeting – Repeaters: They’ve Come a Long Way, Baby!

From the early but still popular FM repeaters of the late 60s or early 70s to the sophisticated digital machines of today. John Davis, WB4QDX knows all, tells all (or at least as much as we have time for).johndavisaugust
Today we have FM repeaters with PL tones to mitigate interference, we have D-STAR repeaters which transmit digital voice and data, and in , we have multiple repeater systems that transmit digital voice and data. Georgia ARES has chosen D-STAR as their technology of choice, and as we continue to revitalize ARES in the county under the able leadership of Pete Sabella, we need to get more people set up to use it efficiently. We also have repeaters that can link to other repeaters around the world via the internet or via RF links. We can link with the National Weather Service. I’ve left out a bunch of things. But not to worry; John will tell all. John started in Amateur Radio as a Novice in 1969 as WN4QDX in Nashville, TN. Upgrading to General then Advanced as WB4QDX, he was active on HF and VHF working with RTTY and repeaters. Moving to Atlanta in 1981, John stayed active on VHF and UHF operating mobile and portable, building and operating repeaters. He upgraded to Extra and currently operates an Icom IC-7300 and an IC-7100 in the shack on SSB, PSK31, D-STAR and CW on HF, and an ID-5100A with D-STAR for VHF, UHF and he helps with most of the other D-STAR repeaters around Georgia
. John is a member of the Gwinnett Amateur Radio Society (GARS
), and is active in EmComm and ARES as an ASEC for the Georgia Section. He previously served as Emergency Coordinator in Gwinnett County for seven years and as Treasurer and Georgia Vice Director for the Southeastern Repeater Association.

So Where Does All This Take Place?

The meeting is at 7:00 on Monday, August 13. We are at Northside Forsyth Hospital’s Bennett Center, 1400 Northside Forsyth Drive, Cumming, GA 30041. This is off GA 400 Exit 14. Enter from Ronald Reagan Blvd. (extension of Marketplace Blvd.) The Bennett Center is on the first floor of the 1400 building, directly across the drive from the (free) parking garage. The conference center is behind the reception desk to your left as you enter the 1400 building. Of course, you don’t have to be a member of SARA to come, but if you live in the area we’d really appreciate your membership.


A Ham’s Gotta Eat

If you can, join us at 5:30 or so at Marie’s, It’s in the Publix shopping center on the north side of GA 20 (GA400 Exit 14), 580 Atlanta Rd, Cumming, Ga. 30040. Marie’s is in the 2nd building to the left of Publix, just past the Humane Society Thrift Store and the monopole cell tower. Here is a Google Street View of the restaurant front to show you what to look for: Look for us maybe at the big table in the front.