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Local “hams” will join with thousands of Amateur Radio operators on Saturday and Sunday, June 25-26, to showcase their emergency capabilities. The two-day event is open to the public, and free.
In the past year, the news has been full of reports of ham radio operators providing communications during unexpected emergencies in towns across America, incidents include California wildfires, winter storms, tornadoes, and other events.
During Hurricane Katrina, amateur radio operators helped many people could communicate, and hundreds of volunteer “hams” helped save lives and property.
During the EF5 tornado that hit Joplin in May, ham radio assisted with communications to get the word out that the hospital had been badly hit by the tornado.
In many cases, amateur radio enthusiasts are often the first to provide critical information and link communications.
The public can meet and talk with Douglas County ham radio operators, and learn more about amateur radio service during the weekend of June 25-26. The annual event is called “Field Day” and is the climax of a week long “Amateur Radio Week” celebration sponsored by the ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio.
Hams across the country will be holding public demonstrations on emergency communications, and explaining the newest digital and satellite capabilities, voice communications, as well as the Morse code. More than 35,000 amateur radio operators across the country participated in last year’s event.
In Douglas County, the DCAR Club will demonstrate amateur radio in the Smallett Area. To participate, rake Hwy. 5 south 4 miles to Hwy. A and turn right; go 5.2 miles and look for the DCAR sign on the left side of the road. The event is open to the public, and opportunities will be provided to those interested in getting a FCC radio license.
There are over 685,000 Amateur Radio licensees in the US, and more than 2.5 million around the world.
Through the ARRL’s Amateur Radio Emergency Services program, ham volunteers provide emergency communications for thousands of state and local emergency response agencies, and non-emergency community services. Ham radio operators will start setting up at 8 a.m. on the 25th.
The public is cordially invited to meet and talk with the hams.