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Governors Show Support for Amateur Radio as ARRL Field Day Approaches

07/01/2009

Governors across the United States have shown their support for Amateur Radio, with many proclaiming Amateur Radio Week in their states. Coinciding with ARRL Field Day, these proclamations show citizens that these states value the contributions made by radio amateurs.

ARRL Public Relations and Media Manager Allen Pitts, W1AGP, said that ARRL Public Information Officers around the country were encouraged to begin work on obtaining proclamations many weeks ago: "Hundreds of local proclamations by city and county leaders -- as well as 28 state proclamations -- have been made, with more expected. Proclamations from the governors of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wyoming, as well as Delaware's State Senate, are not just recognitions of the past, but keys for future political actions such as PRB-1 and legislative issues." Click on each state to view the proclamations.

These state proclamations range from Ohio declaring June 27 as Amateur Radio Day, to Florida, Delaware, Illinois, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania pronouncing June as Amateur Radio Month in those states, while other states have designated Amateur Radio Week in their states.

ARRL Field Day is many things to many people -- a contest to a picnic to an emergency drill and more. But according to Pitts, it is also a public relations event and groups can score more than 500 points for working the public relations angle before the weekend even begins.

"Your fellow hams and club members probably already know about Field Day," Pitts said, "but what about your local newspapers and radio and television stations? Local media outlets are always looking for fun and interesting things going on in their community." Having a media hit or link is good for 100 points.

Instead of manning only the radios, how about manning a public information table with brochures, signs and a smile? That's another 100 points. "The ARRL offers publicity materials at no charge except a small shipping fee," Pitts explained. "It's too late to receive ARRL brochures and handouts if you have not already requested them, but go ahead and order them -- you or your club will never know when the opportunity to tell the world about Amateur Radio will pop up next."

If an elected official visits your Field Day site, you can earn 100 points when they come. "This is easier than many folks might expect. All you have to do is ask!" Pitts said.

If your state is one of the 23 states without a PRB-1 statute on the books, Pitts suggests inviting your elected officials to your Field Day site to see what Amateur Radio is all about. "Chances are, these folks will see the importance of what we do, giving you an inroad into discussing how they can help you get antennas in your community or even across the state. It's amazing to think that a simple invitation could lead to so much, but it's happened before -- why not make your Field Day the next success story."

For a list of the many ways you or your club can earn bonus points this Field Day, please be sure to check out the ARRL Field Day packet.



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