Ham radio operators from Texas County’s Ozark Mountain Amateur Radio Club will participate in the annual American Radio Relay League (AARL) Field Day from 1 p.m. to sundown this Saturday (June 26) in the parking lot at the Texas County Health Department (at 950 U.S. 63 in Houston).
Field Day is an annual activity organized in 1933 by the ARRL, the national association for amateur radio in the United States. Ham enthusiasts across North America participate in the event by establishing temporary ham radio stations in public locations to demonstrate their skill and service. Their use of radio signals, which reach beyond borders, brings people together while providing essential communication in the service of communities.
Field Day highlights ham radio’s ability to work reliably under any conditions from almost any location and create an independent, wireless communications network. Some hams from Texas County will also use radio stations set up in their homes, backyards or other locations to operate individually or with their families.
Many hams have portable radio communication capability that can be powered by alternative energy sources such as generators, solar panels and batteries. This year’s event could be noteworthy if an active hurricane season occurs.
“Hams have a long history of serving our communities when storms or other disasters damage critical communication infrastructure, including cell towers,” said Willy Adey, President of the Ozark Mountain Amateur Radio Club. “Ham radio functions completely independently of the internet and phone systems and a station can be set up almost anywhere in minutes. Hams can quickly raise a wire antenna in a tree or on a mast, connect it to a radio and power source, and communicate effectively with others.”
During Field Day in 2020, more than 18,000 hams participated from thousands of locations in North America. According to the ARRL, there are more than 750,000 licensed amateur radio operators in the U.S., and an estimated 3 million worldwide, ranging in age from 9 to over 100.
A self-study license guide is available from ARRL (The ARRL Ham Radio License Manna!) online at www.arrl.org/shoo/Ham-Radio-License-Manual.
More information about ARRL Field Day is available online at www.arrl.org/fieldday.
The public is welcome to stop by the health department this Saturday for a demonstration of ham radio in action.
For more about ham radio, call Adey at 417-260-4626 or go online to www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio.
The Ozark Mountain Amateur Radio Club has more than 40 members. Its call sign is N0TPE.