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June 19, 2013

Ham Radio operators ready for Annual Field Day

CLAREMORE —

Amateur radio operators or “hams” from the Mayes County Amateur Radio and the Rogers County Wireless Association will present an Amateur Radio Field Day from 1 p.m. Saturday until 1 p.m. Sunday at the Claremore Expo Center. 
Participants will practice emergency set-up and real amateur radio communications. 
“The amateur radio community is a close camaraderie of those who have an interest in emergency communication, who want to educate the public about the ability to talk around the world without using commercial communications,” said MCARC and RCWA member Coralee Duncan.
Duncan said the field day is a nationwide exercise in setting up emergency communication without conventional power sources, generally in remote locations. 
“(The event) will be an informal contest to talk to as many other hams as possible,” she said. “Airwaves are full of hams contacting and responding with one another as they log their contacts.”
Times of contact are written down as well as call signs which can then be “thrown” out for radio operators in other states or countries to answer.
According to information from the national association for Amateur Radio, the  American Radio Relay League Field Day is the single most popular on-the-air event held annually in the U.S. and Canada. 
More than 35,000 radio amateurs gather with their clubs, groups or friends to operate from remote locations.
All are welcome and have an opportunity to use the radios without a license. Interested participants sit down with a ham operator who will provide a cheat sheet which shows the steps of operation. 
Each ham radio operator has a unique call sign; however, for the Claremore event everyone is going to use one specific call sign, said Duncan.  
“We communicate back and forth with people around the U.S., some in Canada, maybe Mexico. We tell who and where we are, connecting with as many contacts as possible, usually for a 24-hour period of time,” said MCARC and RCWA member Ken Duncan.

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