WILMOT, NS - They can talk, text, and send video, but they don’t need cell signal or satellites – and enthusiasts have been doing it for more than 100 years. They’re amateur radio operators – better know as hams – and there are thousands of them all over the world.
They can bounce signals off the moon, talk to astronauts on the space station, and talk to other ham radio operators all over the world. In times of trouble, they can keep communications going.
The Greenwood Amateur Radio Club members can do all of the above, and every year they set up in public and demonstrate the equipment and their abilities. This year they plan to set up for 24 hours starting June 23 at 3 p.m. at the Wilmot Community Centre at 13972 Highway 1.
They’re calling it their Annual Field Day Emergency Preparedness Event – or Field Day for short. It’s practice for emergencies, an informal contest, and most of all it’s fun. For Hams, Field Day is the most popular on-the-air event held annually in the US and Canada.
All year long Hams enjoy the radio hobby by conversing with each other all over the world. They provide communications for marathons, equestrian events, walkathons, off-road car races, and adventure challenges, among other things. They also help with backup communications for the Emergency Measures Organization in times of need.
So what is Field Day? It happens once a year when amateur radio operators gather locally to set up their equipment to communicate all over the USA and Canada.
The ARRL Field Day is the single most popular on-the-air event held annually in the USA and Canada on the fourth weekend of June. It is sponsored by the American Radio Relay League and the Radio Amateurs of Canada and is a chance for Hams to practice for emergency events by setting up radios to provide communications when disaster strikes.
This is done “in the field” without the use of commercial power. It is also a great chance for their families to see them in action enjoying their hobby. Field Day allows Hams to practice, and show off their skills and everyone is welcome to come out to the local event.
With more than 170,000 licensed Hams in North America, there are more than 35,000 who ‘get on the air’ during Field Day. Last year their ranks increased by more than 13,000 new Amateurs in the USA, with proportionally the same in Canada.
Greenwood Amateur Radio Club at the Wilmot Community Center at 13972 Evangeline Trail (Highway 1) in Wilmot. From 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 23 until 3 p.m. on Sunday, June 24. For more info contact Phil Hunter at 902-309-1504. Or contact Bill Underwood, GARC Field Day coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.