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Open Invitation to Vashon Maury Island Radio Club’s Field Day 2013: June 22 & 23

Jun 14

Written by:
6/14/2013 6:34 AM  RssIcon

clip_image004The Vashon Maury Island Radio Club and VashonBePrepared invites the public to visit Vashon’s amateur radio volunteers at our 2013 Field Day event. Vashon Hams gather at Sunrise Ridge on June 22 & 23 for Field Day’s 80th anniversary to compete in the largest single amateur radio and emergency preparedness exercise, with over 35,000 operators participating throughout the US & Canada.

Local ham volunteers who donate their valuable services to the community invites the general public to explore the fascinating world of amateur radio and even try making a call yourself! This is a family friendly event and youth are especially welcome to explore our Communications trailer and learn about the various digital equipment and send out a radio transmission – whether voice, video or email – directly to a remote location without any wires!

Vashon’s Field Day Specifics

Event Date: Saturday, June 22, 11 AM through Sunday, June 23rd, 11 AM

Location: Sunrise Ridge, SW 210th St, behind Vashon Health Center & the ball fields near Voice of Vashon and the Food Bank.

Vashon Maury Island Radio Club

clip_image001The Vashon Maury Island Radio Club (VMIRC, with call sign W7VMI) is an unusually vital 501(c)(3) organization. Open to the public, with no membership dues, the club:

  • supports King County Fire District 13, Office of Emergency Management and Sheriff’s Department during emergencies including several recent search and rescue operations,
  • provides leadership in the VashonBePrepared coalition of disaster preparedness organizations,
  • networks with regional and state Emergency Operations Centers during monthly radio exercises,
  • actively trains with VashonBePrepared’s EOC Team,
  • drills with Vashon’s Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT),
  • provides radio support for Vashon’s Medical Reserve Corps (MRC),
  • holds regular educational classes and certification exams, 
  • maintains local radio repeaters for the public’s use,
  • participates in local and international radio contests,
  • maintains a mobile communications trailer,
  • conducts multiple radio practice sessions (‘nets’) for local hams each week,
  • has weekly breakfast meetings,
  • runs a busy email list,
  • conducts quarterly equipment demonstrations,
  • maintains their www.vmirc.org web site, and
  • offers the annual Field Day to further encourage public involvement

Emergency Preparedness

VMIRC’s emergency preparedness activities are conducted through the club’s Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES) affiliation. ARES consists of licensed amateurs who voluntarily register their qualifications and equipment for public communications duty when disaster strikes. Internet, traditional and cell phones, email and other forms of modern communications are periodically disrupted – and often during emergencies. Amateur Radio provides the only consistent, decentralized and resilient communications backup for communities.

ARES chief, John Galus says, “Vashon’s ARES team has been involved in significantly more live activations this past year. Our frequent drills with Vashon Island Fire & Rescue, CERT, MRC and VashonBePrepared has really improved our effectiveness and ability to efficiently respond to actual incidents. Communications help keep crises from becoming disasters.”

2013 Field Day

clip_image002

Photo from 2011 Vashon Field Day

On Saturday and Sunday June 22nd and 23rd, VMIRC competes in ARRL’s Field Day event with thousands of amateur radio operators making radio contacts from community parks, campgrounds, schools and emergency centers throughout North America.

Open to the public, this is a great way for those curious about radio communications to see real operations, chat with operators and even try a call themselves. VMIRC President Sharon Danielson says, “We are delighted at the influx of new radio operators over the past year. Numerous mothers and fathers concerned with emergency family communications and other civic minded volunteer have taken trainings and joined our club in the past year.  With new radios available for $50, there are fewer barriers to new operators than ever before. Plus we’ve a great social group!”

Points are awarded for a wide variety of activities under simulated emergency conditions:

  • encouraging alternative & emergency power sources such as batteries and solar arrays,
  • mobile operation of radios and antennas,
  • operation of a wide range of modes (e.g., voice, historical Morse code, digital email and video sent via radio),
  • continuous 24 hour availability,
  • ability to reach other contestants across the globe,
  • visits by elected officials, and
  • involvement of youth and the public who have never tried radio operation before.

 

Vashon’s Field Day Coordinator, Georgia Galus said, “The public is invited to see what ham radio is all about and have a chance to try their hand at making radio contacts and experience the fun of operating an amateur radio station.  This is a chance to meet and talk with Vashon’s radio operators and see what modern Amateur Radio Emergency Service is all about.  During the two day event we will have demonstrations of satellite communications, a digital communications workshop and an opportunity to learn how to get your own FCC radio license before the next disaster strikes. We’ll also be using the club’s brand new second transmitter. It provides exciting new digital modes and technical capabilities to the community.”

The staging area for the Vashon ham radio event is provided by Sunrise Ridge and is located in a large grass field at the extreme west end of the campus – past the ball fields and Voice of Vashon.  On-Air operations start at 11 AM Saturday they will continue until 11 AM Sunday.

For more information about preparedness and amateur radio – please visit:

                Vashon Maury Island Radio Club:  www.vmirc.org

                VashonBePrepared: www.VashonBePrepared.org

                Vashon Island Fire & Rescue: www.vifr.org

                King County Office of Emergency Management: www.kingcounty.gov/safety/prepare.aspx

                ARRL the national association for Amateur Radio:  www.arrl.org/field-day

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