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Radio field day is Saturday

Staff writer

When phones go dead and the Internet goes dark, long distance communication might seem futile, but not for this bunch of ham radio operators.

They know what it’s like to cast their voice thousands of miles in all directions around the world.

Amateur Radio Field Day is this weekend at Marion County Park and Lake.

The 24-hour event starts at 1 p.m. Saturday when ham radio operators will simulation setup and broadcast from the lake hall as part of a simulated emergency.

“We’ll all be scurrying around,” ham operator Russell Groves of Hillsboro, said, “pulling wires, setting up antennas, getting power and radios ready to go.”

Radio operators will attempt to contact other states and countries using Morse code, digital, and voice stations.

“We’re a talkative bunch,” Groves said. “We’ll be using multiple radio frequencies and making hundreds of contacts.

There also will be a broadcast station for unlicensed participants.

“For somebody who has never transmitted before, the voice station is usually most exciting because of the randomness,” Groves said. “You never know who you’re going to talk to.”

Amateur Radio Field Day is part of a nationwide event put on by the Amateur Radio Relay League. It is open to the public.

Locally, the free event will bring together Newton and McPherson clubs. Groves said any other ham radio operators are welcome to take part in the event.

More information is available from Groves at (620) 947-3467.

Last modified June 24, 2015

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