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Lake Panasoffkee Annual Christmas Parade


Sumter County ARES will be coordinating amateur radio support for the annual Lake Panasoffkee Christmas Parade, which is scheduled for Saturday, December 2nd, 2023.  We are seeking assistance from licensed amateur radio operators who would like to volunteer their time for this annual event.  For more information please email Gene King (KI4LEH), the Sumter County ARES Information Officer, at

Amateur radio operators will perform a variety of functions for this event.  An operator will be assigned to "shadow" each of 4 parade officials.  Additional operators will help with staging the floats.  Other operators will be assigned along the parade route, while yet others will be mobile and tasked as needed.

  • 0900 ET: Volunteer amateur radio operators will start to arrive.

  • 0915 ET: All volunteers will attend a pre-event briefing in front of the Stardust Lounge.

  • 0930 ET: Volunteers will be at their assigned location/post and be ready to assist.

  • 1045 ET: All Parade Participants are either in their places or asked to join at the end of the parade.

  • 1100 ET: The parade will commence at 11:00 PM ET sharp and move south along County Road 470.

  • 1230 ET: By this time, the Parade should have concluded and disbursement underway or completed.

  • 1330 ET: By this time all volunteers should have been released from their assignments.

What to Bring
  • Wear clothing that is professional in appearance and appropriate for the weather.  Each volunteer will be issued a high-visibility ARES vest for safety and to be easily recognized as event staff.  Vests must be returned following the event. 

  • Handheld amateur radio (HT) with the frequencies that are listed in the Communications section below.  These frequencies should be programmed into the radio in advance.

  • If you are assigned a static post, such as along the parade route, and standing for long periods of time is a physical challenge for you, consider bringing a chair.

  • Although food and drink will be available at the event, you may want to consider bringing your own snack and drink.

  • Communications Plan - A (Primary)
    The Sumter County ARES EmComm Trailer will be on site running its own UHF repeater.  All amateur volunteers should use this UHF mobile repeater for primary communications:
    RX frequency: 441.900 MHz
    TX frequency: 446.900 MHz
    PL Tone: 123.0 Hz


  • Communications Plan - B (Alternate)
    In the event of a failure of the on-site UHF repeater, the K4HOG repeater will be used:
    RX frequency: 147.030 MHz
    TX frequency: 147.630 MHz
    PL Tone: 123.0 Hz


To facilitate the frequent unit-to-unit communications, there WILL NOT be a Directed Net for this event.  Units should use their tactical call signs.  Below is an example of a typical exchange:

Parade-1 is calling Staging-3: "Staging-3, Parade-1"

Staging-3 answering: "Staging-3"

Parade-1 proceeds with the message and ends his transmission with his or her FCC assigned call sign.

Staging-3 acknowledges and clears with his or her FCC assigned call sign.

IMPORTANT: Speak clearly and slowly, keeping your message brief and to the point.  Remember to key the microphone and wait 2 seconds before speaking.  To avoid clipping off the end of your message, wait 2 seconds after you have stopped talking before unkeying the microphone. 

Please​ have these frequencies and access tone programmed into your radio and tested for operability in advance.

We Need Your Assistance

If you would like to sign up to help out, click on the SignUp logo below.  Once you have signed up, a member of Sumter County ARES will contact you to discuss the assignment and to answer any questions you might have.  

To sign up, click on the SignUp logo >

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