T.S.P.S. Chapter 5 Newsletter
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Hot Off the Press….
The Bois d’Arc Post
is the Official Chapter 5 Newsletter. This is your publication. It can never
be any better than the flow of news you contribute. It is intended for
Chapter 5 members and supporters to share ideas and information of interest,
but it is also available to the general public. If you have any sort of
information that would be of interest or beneficial to our members, please
forward it so that we can include it in an upcoming edition. Contact
Chapter 5 President Robert Cummings (972-440-3681) or Chris
Freeman (972-226-8181) to discuss your Newsletter contribution. The
Newsletter is maintained by
Operations, with maintenance funding provided by
Record & Abstract Services, Inc.
Thoughts for the Day….
“There are no traffic
jams when you go the extra mile.”
“An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”
- Benjamin Franklin
Geocaching…..Don’t Be a Muggle! High Tech Outdoor Fun for
If you know nothing about geocaching, you are a muggle, and you may
destroy a cache because you don’t know what it is. Now’s the time for us
all to become educated, so we don’t inadvertently ruin someone else’s fun.
The following is an attempt to explain the basic concepts of GEOCACHING.
Geocaching is a high-tech hunt for hidden treasure (hey, this sounds a bit
like surveying). Some describe it as an Easter egg hunt. This is how it
works: somebody hides a container with inexpensive zu-zus and wham-whams
(knick-knacks)….this is the cache. Then they post its location with a
latitude and longitude on a geocaching website, and the hunt is on for the
geocachers. If they find the cache, they trade knick-knacks and sign a log
book to record their visit. Finally, they rehide the cache, so that the
muggles won’t discover it and haul it away.
Chapter 5 previously had a cache in the downtown Garland area, but the
site was destroyed by a construction project. The monument we set (donated
by MIDWEST) needs to be reset at another location. During the time our
cache was active, we received many positive comments about our Surveyor
related trinkets in the cache box. We were also chastised by a geocacher
for putting a survey grade position on the monument for visitors to
calibrate their handhelds to….an impossible task since handhelds are not
capable of such high accuracy positions. Oh well, we learned something!
A few years back, geocaching was almost a secret game played by a small
group of dedicated participants, but today there are hundreds of thousands
of geocachers around the world who are busy hiding and hunting for these
treasures. To play the game, you’ll need a simple hand held GPS receiver.
You can get these devices for around $100 and up, depending on the desired
features and mapping software. Many Surveyors (and
hunters/fishermen/hikers/campers) already have such devices. Are you
wondering where the challenge lies if the GPS leads you right to the
cache? There are 2 reasons why finding the cache remains a challenge:
first, the GPS only gets you to within 15-20 feet of your target; second,
the cache is hidden or disguised, either from geocachers to increase the
fun of the hunt, or to conceal the cache from muggles.
The real fun in geocaching is discovering a variety of new and interesting
places nearby that you didn’t know existed. And as Surveyors, we can bring
the geocache nation into our Geospatial World by placing caches at
locations that have a tie to the Surveying profession. Surveyors
themselves are probably not even aware of the multitude of neat sites in
and around the Metroplex that have a tie-in to the Survey World.
With the assistance of Chapter 5 member Charlie Redd, we hope to place a
Chapter 5 cache at a “Surveyor related” site in the Dallas area, and post
it for any and all who want to join in the hunt. We may place a travel
bug, a knick-knack in the cache that if you take it, you help it get to a
desired location (maybe to the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame Museum in Waco,
with its very prominent Survey display). Or maybe the destination could be
Mt. Rushmore, where 3 of those men were Surveyors, or the National Museum
of Surveying in Springfield, Illinois. The possibilities are limited only
by the imagination. This is a work in progress, but one that can be fun
for the Chapter, fun for the public, and an easy activity that puts our
profession out to interact with the public.
Anyone with ideas……………..let’s hear from ya. Is anyone aware of a neat
Surveyor related location? Contact Chris Freeman.
THANK YOU ADVERTISERS!
A special THANKS to all the individuals and firms that have
renewed their advertising in the Chapter 5 Newsletter. The funds generated
from the ads go into the General Fund of the Chapter, and help with
educational and promotional events and activities throughout the year that
benefit our members and profession. The rates are purposefully priced at
favorable rates to provide maximum benefit to our supporters and sponsors.
If you or your firm is interested in adding your business card or larger
ad, please contact Chris Freeman (972-226-8181).
TSPS-5 Advertisers should be encouraged to send
advertisements in .JPG format at 72dpi/ppi
Business card sized at 2" * 3.5"
Half page ads sized at 5.5" * 4.25"
Full page ad's 11" * 8.5"
Other acceptable image file format as follows: .tif, .bmp, .gif
.PDF are acceptable but require re-formatting which may affect final image
Other file formats will require reformatting and take longer to post.
Advertisements may be sent as stand alone HTML based web code. For more
specific web code advertisement details please Chris Freeman at his email
Advertisements should be emailed to Chris Freeman at his email address:
Advertisements should be sent prior to Newsletter posting on the 1st of
Advertising prices are listed on the
TSPS-5.org Pro Listings
Texas Survey History
Came across an interesting historical tale involving Surveyors on the Texas
frontier. Click here
to get to the link that tells the tale of The Battle of Lost Creek, down in
southwest Navarro County. There’s actually a Historical Marker off Highway
31 that commemorates the Battle between a Survey party and Indians. Take a
few minutes to read.
In the Rearview
---The Febuary meeting had
a strong turnout, with 50+ attendees. Barton Burnett, Faculty Advisor for
the Duncanville H.S. SkillsUSA Survey program, was our Guest Speaker. Barton
updated attendees on activities and of the upcoming competitions. SURPAC
donations of $49 were collected and forwarded to Anne Glasgow at State.
---Tim Jackson supervised the SkillsUSA District level Survey Competition at
Duncanville High School on February 13th, with assistance from John Pierce
and Chris Freeman. Three teams of three students each competed, with 4 main
aspects of competition: a 50 question written test (CST Level 1), Resume and
Job Interview, Differential Level Loop, Field Traverse/Calculations. The top
two teams will advance to the Regional Competition that will be held in Waco
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Technician exam prep classes continue…..
The Dallas Chapter offers Certified
Survey Technician Level I and Level II examination prep sessions prior to
every monthly meeting. John Pierce leads this effort, held prior to
regular monthly Chapter meetings at the Cantina Laredo Restaurant
(southeast corner of Inwood Road/Lover’s Lane, next to the Inwood Theater)
from 5-6pm. This is an excellent opportunity for both office and field
staff to familiarize themselves and prepare for the various Certification
exams. There is no cost to attend, and all are welcome to attend and
participate. Next scheduled session will be before the March 10th Chapter
meeting at Cantina Laredo Restaurant (5-6pm). For questions/info, contact
John Pierce at 214-532-1667.
The next CST exam date is tentatively set for Saturday March 14. Now is
the time to get registered and prepared for the exam. Contact John Pierce
SIT & RPLS Exam Study Groups
There will be three study group meetings
before the April 2009 RPLS & SIT exams. The first meeting will be Saturday,
March 7, from 8am-noon at Halff Associates' Richardson office (see attached
map). The other two meetings are tentatively scheduled for March 21 and
The RPLS group will go over analytical problems and legal terminology at the
first meeting. The SIT group will work though problems from sample exams and
spend additional time on the subjects people have questions about. Please
bring any questions or analytical problems you might have found to the
meeting and we'll try to work them as a group. This group is open to anyone
who is studying to take the Texas RPLS or SIT exams this April or in the
future. As always, there is no cost for the study group, and breakfast is
provided for those who RSVP. Please RSVP to Jason Jernigan.
You can also keep track of group meetings and access study material through
the following two Yahoo groups:
• SIT Study Group:
• RPLS Study Group:
Contact Jason Jernigan (214-346-6204) for information regarding the Study
Groups and schedule.
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Bulletin Board Odds ‘n Ends….
LOST & FOUND!
I found some surveying equipment along Ridge Road (FM 740) on Friday evening
02/20/2009 and it was still there on Saturday morning so I took it home with me.
I would like to return this to its rightful owner. Please call/email me with the
proper description and I will arrange to get it back to you.
Jason D. Thompson, RPLS
Out On the Horizon….
The next Chapter 5 meeting will be held Tuesday March
10th at the Cantina Laredo Restaurant on Lover’s Lane. Guest Speaker will be
the Chairperson of the Texas Board of Professional Land Surveyors, Nedra
Foster, who will update us on the Board activities. Come join us for
good food and great camaraderie.
Spring Symposium in Waco March 20-21 You might want to make plans to
attend the TSPS Spring Symposium this year. It will be held Friday and
Saturday, March 20-21, in Waco. Two full days of TBPLS approved continuing
education courses are available, as well as several courses designed for
paraprofessional staff. The Friday luncheon (free for attendees) will
include a couple of Chapter 5 members receiving awards from last year’s
Convention Cruise that they were unable to attend…Young Surveyor of the Year
Award to Jason Jernigan and Chapter President of the Year Award to Chris
Freeman. Also, a fun event is planned for Friday evening (free of charge to
attendees) at the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame Museum. A geocache monument will
be set at the base of Texas frontier Surveyor George Erath’s statue outside
the Museum. Attendees will also get a free tour of the museum, and will be
surprised at the prominent survey displays inside. The event will help
celebrate Texas and National Surveyor Week (March 15-20). See the TSPS
website for detailed course and registration information for the Symposium.
Career Summit The Richardson Chamber of Commerce is coordinating a
Career Summit for Richardson ISD students on March 5th. Chapter 5 was
contacted to participate, and a table will be manned by Tim Marcinko,
Jason Jernigan, and Raul Wong, Jr. In addition, MIDWEST A&E
will provide survey equipment for the always popular tech demos. This is an
outstanding way for us to introduce surveying to hundreds of students. The
key is to introduce Surveying at an early age, so that by high school they
can be preparing themselves for college survey curriculum. Thanks to the
Golf Tournament guru Sean Flaherty informs us that the 2009 Annual
Tim Mireaur Memorial Golf Tournament is scheduled for Saturday April
25th at The Brickyard Golf Course in Ferris. This widely popular and
successful event draws nearly 100 hackers as they hack their way across the
south Dallas County terrain, lyin’ and cheatin’ their way back to the
clubhouse. Mark your calendars!
With new Chapter leaders comes the need for continued participation by
Chapter members. The strength of any volunteer organization is only as
strong as the participation of its members. Committees are always in need of
people to lead and contribute. There are typically 5 standing committees:
Membership, Program, Public Relations & Education, Nominating, and Audit.
In addition, the President can assign a Special Committee (such as
SkillsUSA) if so desired. If you are interested in being part of the
solution and helping our Chapter and profession move forward, please contact
any of the Chapter officers.
If you would like to offer an article or share some news or information, you
are more than welcome to do so. The Newsletter is a service to Chapter 5
members, and your contributions are encouraged.
---next TBPLS Board Meeting to be held in Austin on June 12,
2009. The TBPLS awards 4 CEU’s to attendees of their meetings.
---next TSPS Board Meeting to be held on June 13, 2009 at the
Radisson Hotel in Austin. The Annual Ray Wisdom Benefit Auction will follow
the meeting, and is always a fun event for Surveyors, family, and friends
with good eats and cold refreshments.
it a Priority
Click here for links to
various Safety websites that might be helpful to your firm and staff.
CHAPTER 5 MEETINGS & SPECIAL EVENTS SCHEDULE:
March 10 --- Nedra Foster, Chairperson of TBPLS
April 14 --- Scott Stockburger: Surveying for Subsurface Utility
April 25 --- Annual Golf Tournament at The Brickyard
May 12 --- Jack Avis: GIS as a Survey Tool
June 9 --- Glenn Breysacher/Wayne Terry: Vacancy in Garland?
July 14 --- Rob Hathaway, Delorme GIS: Geocaching for fun
August 11 --- Garland Police Chief Mitch Bates: Forensic Surveying
September ? --- Joint Meeting with Chapter 2
October 22-24 --- TSPS Annual Convention in Austin
November 10 --- Speaker/Program to be determined
Chapter 5 Meetings are
Cantina LAREDO Restaurant
165 Inwood Village, Dallas, TX 75209
(Southeast Corner of Inwood & Lover’s Lane, next to Inwood Theater)
Social/Dinner Time: 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm (order from the menu)
Chapter Meeting: Business @ 7:00 pm, Program @ 7:30
Thanks to the following
Full-Page Ad subscribers: Midwest A&E,
Precise Land Records,
Record & Abstract, Geomatic Resources,
WDS, GeoShack, and
Be sure to support
our friends at these firms, they support us!!
Archived News Letters: