We are very fortunate to have an active and healthy amateur radio council in Muskegon. To some, amateur radio is a hobbyist activity that they enjoy seeing who they can connect with and how far the signals they can receive. It's a fun way to keep an ear to the world too for weather alerts and staying in touch with friends. There's a very key piece here however that can't be ignored in the world we live in today. The members of this club are federally licensed radio operators. Still scratching your head? Modern communication relies so heavily on the internet that we are crippled without it. Think of the amount of communication you do daily over the web. Just the normal stuff. Now, imagine the unthinkable and it's all gone. Might have your attention now?
The levels of the radio spectrum that are utilized for different levels of communication are protected for reasons. There are 12 different "bands" that are utilized. Everything from your car radio to the blu tooth items you have, walkie talkies, cell phones etc....all on radio frequencies. Garage door opener? Radio frequency. There is always growth too. There are workings going on now to expand the highest levels of radio frequencies to further expand. So, how does an amateur radio club still remain relevant? Well, let's get back to the idea of a blackout on the internet. All of the sudden, it's all gone. No news. No social media. No email. How do we find out anything?
This is when those with the "old technology" get a chance to shine. It might be old, but it still works and there are enough people out there who know what they are doing and can become instantly activated to help get the word out in and among a community in a hurry. This kind of ancient technology is even being considered in some emergency circles should a cyber attack happen. Imagine a hospital system with a centralized campus and some outreach centers trying to manage with no phones, internet or modern communication? All of the sudden, that dusty old CB Radio is looking pretty good isn't it? BUT....let's put the apocalyptic stuff aside...hopefully you understand that what might be considered outdated, is still the gold standard.
Now, let's get you involved. The Muskegon Area Amateur Radio Council will be holding it's Field Day on Saturday June 25th beginning at 2p. The event is taking place at Fruitland Township Park which is located at 4545 Nestrom Street. You will find multiple radio operators setting up and hitting the airwaves to practice their craft and work to make connections across the globe. They are also making this event open to the public and extending an invite to come out and learn more about this hobby and craft. There will be a lot of opportunity to learn and participate and you can see first hand just how effective and vital radio communications can be. This is a super fun, and yes...proudly kinda "nerdy" thing (yes, I am proudly working to be one of those nerds) but being a part of a group like this is essential to all of us, and while we hope that everything stays status quo with modern communications, having a way to stay in touch in the house sure can't hurt. Knowing how to work it is even better.
Rick Fyan and Barb Featherstone are my guests at the MAARC Club House on Scenic Drive in North Muskegon. Yes, I have a little explaining to do with the club, however....you need to learn about the event this weekend! Take a listen.
A hobby that can become an essential service in an instant. I will have to be as transparent as I can with ya here. I am a staunch defender of communications. I believe in the proper use of mass communication devices and platforms and with what people are subject to in today's world.....just knowing there's an amateur radio council is reassuring and knowing too that they are actively working to make sure that their craft is maintained, protected and used in times that are good and bad is reason to applaud this group of people. Life has gotten to the Jetson's levels in some ways with how we interact. Did you ever imagine that you'd be able to "Facetime" with someone and see into their world like it was once written about in fantasy? One nefarious and well planted hack...it's gone. Radio frequencies....are EVERYWHERE. Learn more about them and those who utilize them for the greater good this weekend at Fruitland Township Park.