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Amateur radio 'Field Day' set for June 24-25

24 June 2017

"That's the beauty of Amateur Radio during a communications outage".

"Ham radio is a great hobby but radio amateurs pitch in when all else fails", Club President Chris Patton said.

Over the past several years, the news has been full of reports of ham radio operators providing critical communications during unexpected emergencies in towns across America including the Colorado wildfires and floods, winter storms, tornadoes and other events world-wide.

Port Coquitlam's Emergency Preparedness Communications (EPCom) team will be at Castle Park from 5 p.m. Friday to noon on Sunday.

Ironically, the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL) has its Annual Field Day across the nation this weekend.

Zylstra says they want to get young people involved in amateur radio as well. "We can let them use the radio and have fun". The group also works communications for the Half Marathon, Chick-fil-a road race, the cross country races at the Wood County 4-H Fairgrounds, and numerous other races throughout the year.

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"One of the big things that we are pushing here, locally, is the fact that we can provide communication when traditional means, such as cell phones or landline telephones, are out", Gregg said.

Field day is the single most popular on-the-air event held annually in the US and Canada. If the status of conditions in a certain area is needed, one of our club members will go and check it out and report back. "From the natural disaster and tsunami in Japan to tornadoes in Missouri, ham radio provided the most reliable communication networks in the first critical hours of the events".

The club will have radios set up in the ECOM Trailer to operate the Club Station or operators are invited to bring their own antenna and equipment and see how well their portable station will work.

The technology has been used since the 1930s and there are more than 700,000 licensed operators in the country, according to ARRL.

For a guy like Fox, who has had a license since 2014, the event will be another chance to learn more about ham radio.

Amateur radio 'Field Day' set for June 24-25