Gary Bourgois

Your Humble Host

Gary Bourgois is the President and Program Director of SkyBird, and humble host of FNL.

Gary has hosted FNL since about 1991, starting back with Jim Bass on the old LTR Network, a service devoted to hams and SWL's (Jim also produced the weekly TV show QSO HAM RADIO, which was uplinked from Syracuse NY to the joy of radio geeks all over Creation, and Jim was the one who really started the chain that has led to the present FNL broadcast.
Before FNL, Gary was:
A) Novell System Administrator at a local hospital,
B) Wild and wooly DJ who scared the pants off the managers of several local stations,
C) TV producer at TV6 (We cover the sticks),
D) Spent many years at Northern Michigan University as a Radio and TV broadcaster at WNMU-FM and WNMU-TV where he also lectured on Multitrack Production for the University Broadcasting Classes.
(All of the above are correct)

Following this, he managed STUDIO B, the only recording studio in Downtown Marquette (on the prestigious 100 Block, where all the banks are). The studio, located over a shoe store is where the Flash Frizbone Comedy Series was produced for the Air check Factory.

Gary's interests include Elaine, the love of his life, his cat BINKY (aka Velcra), and all forms of communications. He got his ham ticket (WB8EOH) in 1967, is still an active SWL and BCB DXer, and occasionally fires up his 2kw ham station to talk with fellow hams all over the world. Gary monitors 146.94 simplex 24 hours a day (his private channel) and if you are in downtown Marquette, and have a ham ticket, give him a call and see if he is near the rig.

In 1976 while at WNMU, he witnessed the installation of the first satellite dish in Northern Michigan (a 30 footer!). He later helped install the first home dish in Upper Michigan (for a doctor in Scandia, Michigan), a 12 footer with a SKY EYE 1 receiver. At the University, playing with the satellite receivers during his off time became a bit of an obsession. Eventually he knew he had to have a dish of his own, but the $5,000 price for a home dish was out of the question. Prices kept going down, and his recording studio picked up the account of RENT-A-DISH in Negaunee, Michigan, who at one time was the largest satellite dealer in the USA. But the money was needed for other things...

Until 1986 when he acquired his first satellite receiver, a used 70mhz analog tuner he traded for a microphone. He got a trashed dish that had been taken out by wind, and replaced by someone's insurance, scrounged up a half dead actuator, and an ancient 45 volt mover, and with this fully manual system (You can see the original dish, a Paraclypse which was later donated to the University Student Radio station, on the FNL video, which we hope to have available again). Since that first dish, there was no turning back. Now with all of Gary's satellite dishes gracing the house at 429 Spring (like the coil of wire) Street, and two more on the way, TVRO is more than a hobby, it is a way of life.

Always eager to explore new technologies, and with a zest for life, Gary continues to keep busy exploring the universe, having fun, and kicking back with Elaine and the family to enjoy the pleasures of being alive.

Click here to see some pictures of the equipment Gary uses in the studio to make it all happen.
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