Amateur radio historic event set for Oct. 1

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Sep. 13—BURLINGTON — The Southern Ohio Amateur Radio Association (SOARA) and the Lawrence County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) members will participate in an On the Air Special Historical Event, Saturday, Oct. 1

The SOARA members will join with other invited amateur radio clubs across the Tri-State area to participate in this event. Several special amateur radios operating on different frequencies will be set up at the Burlington Commons shelter on the Ohio Riverbank in Burlington, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Amateurs will be operating radio equipment that will allow contacts to be made not only across the Tri-State, but throughout the United States and countries around the world. The radio stations will use the SOARA's club FCC call sign, W8SOE.

A rainout date is set for Oct. 15.

In the last several years SOARA has participated in special radio events celebrating the rich historical heritage of Lawrence County. Last year they were at the Lake Vesuvius Iron Furnace, and in prior years, the Lawrence County Courthouse and the Covered Bridge at Scottown.

This year, in keeping with the historical event series, SOARA members will bring attention to the early history of Lawrence County and its first county seat, established in 1817 at Burlington.

The event will focus on the importance of Burlington as part of the Underground Railroad. Additionally, the first Lawrence County jail built in 1846 is still standing in Burlington and will be open for tours.

This event will be the first for the Ohio Section of the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) at this location.

"This event has all the opportunities for a FUN-FILLED family day engaging the public and learning about the rich history of Burlington," Mike Love, WB8YKS SOARA public information officer said.

Additionally, the Burlington Commons playground area will be open. A special focus will be made to spotlight the public awareness of the hobby and the benefits of a Ham Radio license, as well as emergency and community service. The public will be invited to talk on the radios under the direct supervision of an FCC licensed operator. A special certificate will be issued to all amateurs who contact SOARA, W8SOE.

"I am excited that the SOARA members have decided to have their special event here at the Burlington Commons and are focusing on our area's history," Tamara Howard, president of the Concerned Citizens of the Burlington Area, said. "I am encouraging everyone to make a visit and take advantage of this unique opportunity."

"The special event station will mimic emergency conditions which would be required when there is a total communications failure of telephone, commercial radio, television, cell phone, and web access due to devastating weather, earthquake and wildfire conditions," Eddie Jenkins, N8URU assistant Amateur Radio Emergency Service Coordinator (ARES) and SOARA vice president.

All amateur radio operators and the public are invited to this free event. The shelter area, parking and restrooms are handicap accessible.

To reach the Burlington Commons shelter area from U.S. 52, turn south onto Burlington Macedonia Road at Lowe's and go straight to the Ohio River.