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Camp for Young Radio Amateurs in the Americas is a Go for this Summer


The long-awaited inaugural Youth on the Air (YOTA) camp for young amateur radio operators in North, Central, and South America will go forward this July. The camp, set for July 11 – 16, will take place at the National Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting in West Chester Township, Ohio, north of Cincinnati. The camp had to be postponed in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The camp will comply with COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines as set by the state of Ohio and the Centers for Disease Control, such as requiring the use of masks, distancing, and sanitizing stations,” said Camp Director Neil Rapp, WB9VPG. “Attendees may be asked to take a COVID-19 test and/or self-quarantine prior to arrival, depending on the guidelines in place in July. The entire staff of the camp are either fully vaccinated or will finish the vaccine series by the end of April. Most volunteers have also indicated that they are fully vaccinated.” Rapp said some activities may need to be modified to work with COVID-19 precautions.

Rapp said that if the COVID-19 situation unexpectedly degrades in extreme fashion or the state declares that the camp is not safe to operate, the event will have to be postponed again, until 2022. “Due to the volatility of the public COVID-19 response, attendees are highly encouraged to avoid non-refundable tickets for transportation to Cincinnati,” he advised.

Twenty-eight campers from the US, Canada, Mexico, and Iceland have already signed up for the 30 available positions, but Youth on the Air will continue to accept applications through June 1. Rapp said a waitlist will be set up, if needed.

It costs nothing to apply. The camp’s cost of $100 is not due until the applicant has been accepted. Should a potential camper not be able to afford the $100 fee, he or she may apply for a scholarship. The Youth on the Air website has camp details.

This would mark the first camp ever for young radio amateurs in International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 2. For additional information, contact Rapp.

The IARU Region 1 (Europe, Africa, the Mideast, and Northern Asia) Youth Working Group announced this week that its planned YOTA Summer Camp in Croatia had to be postponed again to 2022, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.   



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