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Model Rocket Club, Section #139
Serving Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan Area
2000 - 2001 and 2003 - 2004 National Championship Section


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Last modified:
6/5/2014 18:59:43

The NARHAMS model rocket club serves Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan Area. The club is an official chapter section of the National Association of Rocketry (NAR). First established in 1965, NARHAMS is the oldest continuously operating model rocket club in the United States and was named Section of the Year for 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2004, 2006, and 2007. We are also the National Championship section for 2001 and 2004.

Next Launch: Aug 21, 12:00 pm
Mt. Airy, MD
Theme: Sounding rockets
Next Meeting: Aug 7, 7:00 pm
Hap Arnold Center, College Park Airport
Topic: open
If a launch is postponed or cancelled, it will be updated here by 6 pm the day prior. Launch is assumed to be a GO unless otherwise noted.

Mt. Airy Launch Update

Mt. Airy launches are now fully open, no registration required! COVID protocols listed below are no longer required, though we do still encourage people to practice safe socializing.

Rocket Run to Run

NARHAMS will have its first Rocket Run, Saturday, July 17, at the Old National Pike Park, near Mt. Airy, MD (club's July launch).

The activity is for children - defined here as anyone enrolled in school and under 21-years of age - and last, for prize-winning purposes, a half hour.

Here is the answer to, "What is a Rocket Run?": It is like an Easter Egg Hunt using rockets. This is how it is planned: NARHAMS will launch two racks (a dozen Estes Mosquitos) in quick order (5-second countdowns apart) at 12:30 p.m. After the launches, participants may go after, retrieve, and KEEP any found Rocket Run Mosquitoes. Participants who find Rocket Run Mosquitoes, by 1 p.m. can claim NASA-themed bibelots at the checkin desk. There is no fee or registration required. Children who show up may participate.

NARHAMS is doing this as a club activity and to encourage youth to be interested in model rocketry and the sciences.

The idea of an Easter Egg Hunt using rockets originated during a conversation with John Bonk at a Goddard launch two years ago. John is a Mosquito aficionado always with the wee models bedecked in different monthly themes. The club picked up on this and collectively built Mosquitoes for a Rocket Run. In March 2020, the club held a 55-year anniversary commemoration with a contest judging craftsmanship for the built models. Jim Miers took honors and a cash prize ( see ZOG-43 article). Earlier attempts to hold the Rocket Run activity were thwarted by virus closures. The models to be flown will be powered by 1/4A engines.

Updated Rules for Launches

Due to COVID-19, the State of Maryland requires NARHAMS and all park patrons to follow these rules.

  • If you are exhibiting signs of COVID-19 symptoms then you can not attend the launch activity.
  • Face coverings are to be worn properly at all times while participating in rocket activities, especially while at Safety Check-in and Launch Racks. Face covering can be relaxed while at your personal prep area that is a minimum distance of 12 feet from another prep area. If you cannot wear a face mask, a face shield is allowed.
  • Social Distancing of a minimum of 6ft between family units. To help with maintaining social distancing while waiting for safety check in, cones will be placed at intervals that we ask that you stand at. We ask spectators to spread out as much as possible to maintain social distancing.
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided and should be use as needed and before and after handling launch equipment.
  • NARHAMS reserves the right to refuse to launch a rocket or stop the launch entirely for any reason.

Goddard Launches Cancelled

Goddard Visitor Center closed to the public on March 13. Therefore, NARHAMS launches at Goddard are cancelled until further notice.

New Launch Site Approved

NARHAMS has received approval for a launching at a new site in Carroll County. The new site is at Krimgold Park, 5355 Woodbine Road (MD Route 94) near Woodbine, MD.

Site is limited to G-powered models and below (same as Mt. Airy). No vehicles or pop-up tents are allowed on the grass, and no PA system is allowed.

Come on out to check out the field, do some fun flying, or get in some TARC practice flights!

Mt. Airy Launches

Club launches are held on the third Saturday of every month, weather permitting, at Old National Pike Park in Mt. Airy, Maryland. The field can support up to G-powered motors with the appropriate FAA waivers. Launch times vary throughout the year, so be sure to check the Calendar for details. Our launches are always open to non-club members who wish to fly. NARHAMS provides launch controllers and pads with 1/8", 3/16", and 1/4" rods, as well as 1010 and 20mm rails.

Please do not contact Frederick County Parks with questions about launches. Instead, email questions to any of the following people:
Alex Mankevich
Sarah Jackson
Jim Miers

Directions to Mt. Airy Field

Goddard Launches

NARHAMS also supports the oldest public demonstration launches in the United States. These launches are held on the first Sunday of each month at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, starting at 1 pm. Anyone who wishes to fly at these events may do so. Due to the limited recovery area, the flying of high power models and untested designs is discouraged. The impulse limit at Goddard is D engine or less.

Directions to Goddard


Meetings are held virtually on the first Saturday of each month, starting at 7 pm. Invites to the WebEx meeting are typically sent out a few days before the meeting. Contact Sarah Jackson if you would like to attend.

Becoming a Member

If this sounds like fun, why not become a member? Dues are only 10 cents a week, with 50 cents minimum required to join. Download the membership form and send it in today!

Please note that to be eligible to vote at club meetings or to compete as a member of NARHAMS, you must also:
a) be a current member of the NAR
b) attend at least one of the previous 3 monthly business meetings

Mailing List

The NARHAMS mailing list is primarily for NARHAMS members to discuss upcoming events related to the club. Non-club members are free to join in the discussion, but please keep the postings at least somewhat related to model rocketry.

Click to join:


Need to stock up on some officially licensed NARAHMS logo gear? Check out our online store!

Additional Information

NARHAMS President
Alex Mankevich

NARHAMS Section Advisor
Jim Miers

National Association of Rocketry
P.O. Box 407
Marion, IA 52302
Sign up for the NAR's electronic newsletter here

Public Launches at Goddard
NASA Goddard Visitor Center