© 2019 W0DBQ

Celebrating Iowa’s Centennial State Parks Year - on the Air


Our goal is to join the Iowa State DNR and other organizations in celebrating Iowa’s Centennial Year of State Parks. This will be a very special event, one recognizing the beauty and utility of our state parks, and one recognizing that Iowa was a leader in creating a state park and county park system.

To publicize on the air the fact that 2020 celebrates the State of Iowa being the first state in the USA to have a state park system and a county park system. There are now sixty-three state parks in the system.

To hold across the state amateur radio events marking the Centennial of this event---similar to the POTA program but distinctively separate. It will be called IASPOTA-2020: Iowa State Parks On The Air 2020

To establish a system of acknowledging amateur radio operators who make contact during the year with five of our state park radio events. They will qualify for a certificate acknowledging their achievement.

To involve as many clubs and amateur radio operators across the State of Iowa as possible in the yearlong event.

To have fun and promote amateur radio in the State of Iowa.


Parks 2020 centennial goals:

Celebrate the importance of state parks to Iowa’s history, culture and quality of life;

Connect Iowans to natural resources in a personal and passionate way; and

Inspire a high level of appreciation and stewardship of the Iowa state park system for the future.





General Rules and Guidelines:





Iowa State Parks on the Air for the year 2020


Certificates given to Park Activators, Iowa State Park Chasers and Short Wave Listeners as defined by the Program: Five verified contacts by a Chaser and ten verified contacts by a Short Wave Listener



An individual or group who participates in IASPOTA-2020 by working an Activator(s) and submitting claims


An individual or group, such as an amateur radio club, who set(s) up an IASPOTA-2020 event in an Iowa State Park with the sole purpose of making on the air contacts

IASPOTA Committee

The group charged with the overall administration of the program


A station operating as a vehicular IASPOTA-2020 station that has a fixed antenna and radio


Any individual active in the program as an Activator or Chaser.


An IASPOTA-2020 station operating with an antenna erected for the sole purpose of participating in IASPOTA and working within one of the Iowa State Parks

Program (The)

Iowa State Parks on the Air for the sole sake of celebrating the Iowa Centennial (1920-2020) of its state park system, abbreviated IASPOTA-2020. This

program is not part of Parks on the Air, POTA, and is limited to the year 2020 only


A state park name and a number that identifies each Iowa state park during the IASPOTA-2020 celebration year. It is based on the alphabetical list of 63 parks established by the State of Iowa DNR. For example Ambrose State Park in the northwest quadrant of the state would be Ambrose-01.

Short Wave Listener

An individual who participates in IASPOTA-2020 by listening to IASPOTA-2020 stations, logs them, and submits a log with his or her claims

State Park

A recreational facility designated a state park by the Iowa State Department of Natural Resources


Worked Iowa State Parks 2020 Award


Iowa State Division of Natural Resources


Program Operation:

The Program is managed via the Internet using a website and emails to keep costs down. The worldwide IASTPOTA2020 website is at http://www. TBD

Program start and end dates:

January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020. Participants:

Activators (individuals and groups) are asked to register when and where they will be operating during IASPOTA, i.e., operating from which park(s) on which day(s). Requests for certificates will be cross-checked against the registration log and thus the registration is very important.

Activators can work from different parks over the course of the IASPOTA-2020 season and this is encouraged.

Chasers can work as many IASPOTA sites as possible, but must work at least  

five for a certificate.

Shortwave listeners must log at least ten IASPOTA sites for a certificate.

Reference System/Identifiers:

There are 63 Iowa State parks. Based on the DNR’s alphabetical list, each park is identified with a name and a number. For example Ambrose State Park is Ambrose-01. The complete list is attached below.

Rules for Activators:

All Activators must comply with and local rules regarding use of the land. In particular, Activators must ensure they have a valid permit if they are camping overnight and they must have permission from the head DNR ranger to set up antennas, etc. Rangers will be aware of IASTOTA-2020 as part of Iowa State’s Centennial Park Celebration and will be cooperative with your efforts.

If using a shelter you must register with the park ranger.

Assure the ranger that you will not be obstructing traffic or that your antennas and guy wires will not be a danger to other visitors of the park. Note it may not be permissible to drive on the grass in areas near shelters or campgrounds without permission from the head park ranger.

As usual it’s nice to give ham radio as much visibility as possible, but be considerate and safe.

Unless special permission is given, park only in designated parking places.

Criteria for Valid Operation:

For an IASTOPA-2020 event to be valid, the following criteria must be met:

An Activator must hold an appropriate transmitting license.

All operations must comply with Part 97 of the FCC Rules and must use permitted amateur radio bands.

Mobile operators can be in, or in the vicinity of a motor vehicle but the antenna must be affixed to the vehicle and able to move with it.

All equipment must be transported to the site by the Activator team (group  

or individual).

All equipment can be operated from a portable power source, such as batteries, solar cells, etc. Operations can use permanently installed power sources, such as at a shelter, or fossil –fuel generators of any kind.

All operations must comply with any limitations regarding the use of transmitting equipment that may exist for the park.

Operators cannot use terrestrial repeaters for making contacts.

Activators must submit a log of each park activation and the stations worked, including call sign, time (UTC) and frequency.

Iowa state parks are open year around. Therefore they can be activated the entire year, January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

Rules for Chasers:

A Chaser must hold an appropriate amateur radio license.

The Chaser to qualify for a certificate must make contact with at least five IASPOTA-2020 stations. A valid QSO/contact must contain the Iowa State Park Identifier, the time of the contact, the frequency and the call sign of the Activator.

To claim a certificate a Chaser should send a self-addressed stamped standard 8.5x11 envelope to:



C/o the Great River Amateur Radio Club

PO Box 1384

Dubuque, IA 52004


QSO’s via terrestrial repeaters will not count.

A Shortwave Listener/Chaser must submit a log of at least ten state parks to qualify for a certificate. The log must contain the State Park Identifier, the

time, and the frequency.







List of State Parks and Designations

State Parks

Ambrose A Call State Park 01

Backbone State Park 02

Beeds Lake State Park 03

Bellevue State Park 04

Big Creek State Park 05

Bigelow State Park 06

Bixby State Park 07

Brush Creek Canyon State Park 08

Brushy Creek State Park 09

Cedar Rock State Park 010

Cold Springs State Park 011

Dalton Pond State Fishing Access Area 012*

Dolliver Memorial State Park 013

Echo Valley State Park 014

Fort Defiance State Park 015

Frank Gotch State Park 016

Galland School State Park Preserve 017*

Geode State Park 018

Green Valley State Park 019

Gull Point State Park 020

Idlewild State Park 021

Lacey-Keosauqua State Park 022

Lake Ahquabi State Park 023

Lake Anita State Park 024

Lake Darling State Park 025

Lake Keomah State Park 026

Lake Macbride State Park 027

Lake Manawa State Park 028

Lake Wapello State Park 029

Lake of Three Fires State Park 030

Ledges State Park 031

Lewis And Clark State Park 032

Maquoketa Caves State Park 033

Margo Frankel Woods State Park 034

McIntosh Woods State Park 035

Mill Creek State Park 036

Mines of Spain State Park 037

Mini Wakan State Park 038

Nine Eagles State Park 039

Oak Grove State Park 040

Palisades-Kepler State Park 041

Pikes Peak State Park 042

Pikes Point State Park 043

Pilot Knob State Park 044

Pine Lake State Park 045

Prairie Rose State Park 046

Preparation Canyon State Park 047

Red Haw State Park 048

Rock Creek State Park 049

Sharon Bluffs State Park 050

Springbrook State Park 051

Stone State Park 052

T F Clark State Park 053

Twin Lakes State Park 054

Union Grove State Park 055

Viking Lake State Park 056

Walnut Woods State Park 057

Wapsipinicon State Park 058

Waubonsie State Park 059

White Pine Hollow State Park 060

Wildcat Den State Park 061

Wilson Island State Park 062

Woodmans Hollow State Park 063


For more information and background on Iowa’s state parks see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Iowa_state_parks. The Wikepedia list does not totally agree with the DNR list above but does list where each park is located, the major body of water involved and when the park began.


*012 and 017 are technically not state parks but are included in the list of sixty-three state parks by the Iowa State DNR.