Media Archive

Local ham radio club helps out at Boy Scout Camporee

Article from The Piscataquis Observer, Vol. 164, No. 22, May 29, 2002

By Sarah MacIlroy
Staff Writer

Annual Scout event attracts youths from all over state

BROWNVILLE From May 16 to 19, scouts from all over the state gathered in Brownville for the annual Boy Scout Camporee. One of the many local volunteers that helped make the weekend a success was the Piscataquis Amateur Radio Club.

"When Scoutmaster David East of Troop 115 of Brownville came to us for help with this camporee, we jumped at it," said Ham Club Member John Howard. "Both on the scouting side and the Ham radio side, a lot of work went into making this an event the kids would never forget."

Webb's RV Center in Bangor offered the use of a 27-foot Citation camper that served as the radio club's base. Club Member Don Gaudreau donated the use of a 10,000 watt generator, four large outdoor speakers and other equipment for use during the weekend.

A crucial part of the club's assistance was the emergency communications the provided during the event, including the scout hike through Gulf Hagas.

"Our major job was to see that all the scouts came out of there in good shape," said Howard.

Additional back-up for the hike was provided by Mayo Regional Hospital. EMT Brian Mullis and Krissy Kittlison went with the large group of scouts into Gulf Hagas in case an emergency arose. A Ham Radio demonstration site was set up to offer scouts the opportunity to earn their radio merit badges during the weekend. Maine Section Emergency Coordinator and Ham Radio Operator Max Soucia introduced scouts to the radio equipment.

"Max signed on as a registered councilor and went to work," Howard explained.

Among other things, the scouts heard the international time station atomic clock in Fort Collins, Colo., hourly weather conditions at sea and the Ham Radio East Coast Communications Net that runs 24 hours a day to meet emergencies, as needed.

Cub scouts also received the opportunity to try out Ham radio with the help of another volunteer, and by the end of the day over 20 scouts had qualified for their merit badge, Howard said.

NOTE - This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of the TRC Alliance Team.