The Eastern Ozarks Amateur Radio Club will now have their monthly meetings at the Bonne Terre Airport.
The first meeting to be held at the airport will be March 8 at 2 p.m. with VE testing at 1:30 p.m.
Eastern Ozarks Amateur Radio Club President Ron Sherrill said amateur radio is short-wave radio, mostly used in a disaster setting when all other means of communications are down.
“It is regulated completely by the FCC. It is a requirement to study and pass a test in order to be able to talk on those bands. We require members to at least have a technician’s license in order to actually join the club, but if anyone is interested in learning about what amateur radio is, they are more than welcome to join the meetings. You don’t have to be a member to sit in with us,” said Sherrill.
Anyone interested in taking the class, to learn how to be certified and actually get their license, is encouraged to do so. The club offers the classes and will assist anyone who wants to get their license.
Sherrill said there is an annual membership of $20 for club members, and they cover many things in a meeting.
“We discuss how to build antennas, how we connect computers into the radios and communicate that way. We also have what we call field days, where we go in without any shoreline electric where we run off battery backup or generators and completely set up as if it were a disaster situation and try to make communications that way,” said Sherrill.
Currently there are 20 members and they continue to grow. They meet the second Saturday of every month at 2 p.m.
They have been part of the Desloge Parade, have plans to be a part of the fall festival at the airport, and have helped out with communications during the endurance run.
“Amateur radio was originally designed as a way of practicing for any major disasters or situations where communications along the normal lines is not possible. So we practice to set up in a similar situation, so we can communicate when those normal channels are not there. It is a hobby, something we play with constantly, a lot of electronics, and just a lot of fun,” said Sherrill.
For more information, visit the Eastern Ozarks Amateur Radio Club face book page or email Ron Sherrill at firstname.lastname@example.org.