Submitted by Lake Whitney Amateur Radio Society
March 3, 2022
You may have noticed some activity at the Lake Whitney Library the last Saturday of January. The Lake Whitney Amateur Radio Society (LWARS) was participating in an event called Winter Field Day.
You may have seen the article in The Lakelander the week of January 26, announcing the 2022 Winter Field Day as well as some information about Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES), possible severe weather spotting and reporting.
Amateur Radio Winter Field Day is an event held the last full weekend of January each year. The event serves as an emergency preparedness test, as well as a contest between radio enthusiasts to make as many contacts as possible in a 24-hour period.
Amateur Radio is a fun and interesting hobby, but it also serves as a public service resource in times when normal commercial communications like landline phones and cell phones and even utility power services might be interrupted by an emergency. Winter Field Day is an opportunity to make sure that we are prepared for emergency communications if our services may be needed.
Due to the article in The Lakelander, the Winter Field Day was very successful for Lake Whitney Amateur Radio Society this year. We had at least eight visitors come out to check out our operations. Several interested visitors brought their own handheld radios to be programmed to receive local communications until they could become licensed to transmit, while others wanted to learn more about amateur radio and how to become a licensed operator.
Members of the Lake Whitney Amateur Radio Society arrived early Saturday at the library to set up the radios, computers and antennas to prepare for this event. When the event officially started, members of the club took turns making radio contact and logging the results.
During the Winter Field Day event, our club was able to make a total of 119 contacts with other amateur radio operators in 31 states in the U.S. and two provinces in Canada (Quebec and Ontario). We had 63 contacts by phone (voice over the radio), 45 contacts by CW (morse code) and 11 digital (computer-to-computer via radio signal) contacts.
The Lake Whitney Amateur Radio Society meets at 10 a.m. on the third Saturday of each month at the Lake Whitney Public Library.
If you’re interested in this hobby and possibly participation in public service events, feel free to come and visit. There are many members who can answer questions and help you become a licensed Amateur Radio Operator.
The club also has mentoring opportunities and (low stress) license testing opportunities before or after meetings.