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Youth on the Air Camp 2021 to Activate W8Y and Stream Selected Events Online

07/02/2021

The first Youth on the Air (YOTA) camp for young radio amateurs in North, Central, and South America begins on July 11 in West Chester, Ohio. Among other activities, campers will be operating special event station W8Y from the National Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting in West Chester Township, and also from the camp hotel. The camp will run until July 16.

“We are at 23 campers,” said Camp Director Neil Rapp, WB9VPG. “We are very excited to finally bring this program to the Americas. Our young people are bringing an incredible lineup of hands-on sessions for their peers. We hope this pilot gives us the information we need to replicate this camp over multiple locations for years to come. We also hope this brings a more robust community of young hams into amateur radio.”

The long-awaited summer camp for up to 30 hams aged 15 through 25 had been set to take place in June 2020, but it had to be rescheduled until summer 2021 because of COVID-19 pandemic concerns. The camp for young hams in the Americas took its cue from the summer Youngsters on the Air camps held for the past few years in various IARU Region 1 countries.

W8Y will be on the air as campers complete projects, between sessions, and during free time. Dedicated operating times on HF will be Monday, July 12, 0100 – 0330 UTC; Tuesday, July 13, 0000 – 0330 UTC and 1800 – 2130 UTC. Dedicated satellite station operating times will be Thursday, July 15, 1400 – 1700 UTC, and Friday, July 16, 1500 – 1700 UTC.

An Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) contact is currently set for either Wednesday, July 14, at 1503 UTC, or Thursday, July 15, at 1416 UTC. It will be streamed live on the Youth on the Air YouTube channel. The camp opening observance on Sunday, July 11, 2100 – 2230 UTC, will feature keynote speaker Tim Duffy, K3LR. The hour-long closing ceremony on Friday, July 16, will begin at 1700 UTC. The YouTube channel will also feature a daily video, highlighting the activities of the previous day.

ARRL and The Yasme Foundation donated project kits for the campers. X-Tronic provided temperature-controlled soldering stations. The brochure on the Youth on the Air website includes more details about the camp. For additional information, contact Camp Director Neil Rapp, WB9VPG.



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