The Washington County Amateur Radio Club will be participating in a national ham radio exercise on Saturday, June 24th and Sunday, June 25th.
Organized by the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL), Field Day is the largest all-volunteer radio communications exercise in the world. Field Day provides an opportunity for Amateur Radio operators to establish temporary ham radio stations, test emergency communications equipment, and demonstrate their skills and service. Radio signals, which travel beyond geographical borders, bring people together to serve their communities through public service and emergency communications.
During Field Day 2021, more than 26,000 Amateur Radio operators participated from thousands of locations across North America. According to the ARRL, there are more than 750,000 Amateur Radio licensees in the US, and an estimated 3 million worldwide.
This year’s event is also noteworthy given that a particularly active hurricane season has been predicted. “Amateur Radio operators have a long history of service to their communities when storms or other disasters damage critical communications infrastructure, including cell towers”, said Justin Pauler, President of the Washington County Amateur Radio Club. “Ham radio functions completely independent of our day-to-day Internet and phone systems, and a station can be set up almost anywhere in minutes”, Pauler added.
Often called ham radio, the Amateur Radio service has been around for over a century. In that time, it’s grown into a worldwide community of licensed operators using the airwaves with every conceivable means of communications technology. Operators range in age from youngsters to grandparents and include rocket scientists and a rockstar or two. Amateur Radio is often a springboard for scientific and engineering careers. Today’s operators communicate using traditional voice, Morse code, and state-of-the-art digital modes.
Field Day isn’t just for Amateur Radio operators! Anyone interested in learning more about ham radio is invited to attend. The Washington County Amateur Radio Club will be operating from Jackson Street Park in Brenham, from 2 PM – 8 PM on Saturday (June 24th), and 8 AM – 12 PM on Sunday (June 25th). More information about the event and the Amateur Radio service can be found on the club’s website at https://www.w5aum.org. License exams will be offered throughout the event.