D I X I E A M A T E U R R A D I O C L U B , I N C .
ABOUT THE DIXIE AMATEUR RADIO CLUB
The Dixie Amateur Radio Club, Inc. (DARC) is a non-profit [IRS 501(c)(3)] association of Amateur Radio operators, also known as "ham radio" operators, in southwestern Utah. DARC, Inc. is affiliated with the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the National Association for Amateur Radio.
Amateur Radio operators are federally licensed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to provide a radio service having a fundamental purpose as expressed in the following principles:
Members of the Dixie Amateur Radio Club provide voluntary public service radio communications throughout the area for activities such as the annual St. George Marathon and the Huntsman World Senior Games. Amateur Radio operators also maintain a readiness to provide emergency communications locally, regionally and world-wide in the event of a natural disaster or other calamity.
WHY ARE WE CALLED THE "DIXIE" AMATEUR RADIO CLUB?
We are in the extreme southwestern portion of the state of Utah, in Washington County, and this area has long been known as "Utah's Dixie". It has been known as such actually since Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS or "Mormon") Pioneers sent by their leaders in Salt Lake City settled this area in the mid-1800's. Those early settlers were directed by their leaders to try to raise crops that might be well suited to the temperate climate here to help meet the needs of the growing population of settlers in the territory. This area of southwestern Utah generally has a much milder climate in comparison to the higher elevation northern part of Utah, in much the same way that the southern states of the U.S. generally has a milder climate than the northern states. That portion of the U.S. was called "Dixie".
Thus, because of the difference in climate here this area earned the nickname "Utah's Dixie". This moniker was also ironically fitting given the settlers' efforts at producing crops of cotton locally, a commodity very much in demand at that time, especially in such an isolated region of the American continent. This production of cotton in the Utah territory became especially critical a decade later during the Civil War years when supplies of cotton from southern states were unobtainable.
WHAT DO WE DO?
Dedicated, skilled and experienced members of the Dixie Amateur Radio Club have a long and proud tradition of providing vital public service communications capabilities within our community. Amateur Radio operators are all volunteers who provide this service, without remuneration, at many local and regional public events such as the annual St. George Marathon and Huntsman World Senior Games. Our members also provide safety communications for many other area events such as bicycle road and off-road mountain-bike races, and many other running events. Our Club members are available to assist, where appropriate, in similar activities in this area.
Specially trained members of our Club, participating in the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) program (please see the Washington County ARES link below) are ready to serve this area when natural and human-caused disasters occur, and are on call day or night, especially "when all else fails! " and most or all normal means of communications are disrupted.
Amateur Radio isn't all "doom and gloom". While the preparation for and ability to provide critical communications in time of disaster is the primary function of the Amateur Radio Service, ham radio operators also have fun and excitement when talking to fellow hams in other states as well in distant countries and islands around the globe. Hams use various internationally assigned amateur frequency bands and modes which include voice, data modes, even television as well as the traditional International Morse Code. Knowledge of and proficiency in the use of Morse Code is no longer required to obtain an Amateur Radio license. Many hams, however, do learn it and then continue to use this simple but elegant communications mode, that in many circumstances, "gets the messages through" in conditions when other operating modes cannot.
Hams also build and maintain mountain-top repeater systems for local and regional communications using hand-held and mobile transceivers and even have many earth-orbiting relay satellites, entirely funded and built by Amateur Radio operators, that provide world-wide capabilities independent of commercial systems. Amateur Radio is the backup that is always there!
The Dixie Amateur Radio Club, Inc. is a formally "Affiliated Club" with the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the National Association for Amateur Radio.
WHAT IS AMATEUR RADIO?
Amateur Radio is the wonderful hobby of experimentation and fun in the area of electronic communication. Almost every Government around the world have allocated frequencies for Radio Amateurs to use. Amateurs are very very skilled in operating in tough communicating conditions. When everything else fails, Amateur Radio works just fine. Testimonies are the services of Amateurs during the Sept-11 disaster, Hurricane Katrina, and the Indian Ocean Sunami, just to name a few. Amateurs (HAMs) are so called, not because they are not professionals at it, but because they don't do it to make money or not have any monetory interests in it.
Amateurs are usually the most knowledgable in the area of applied Communication and Electronics compared to even PhDs from an academic institutions when it comes to practice. If in doubt, ask a graduate engineer about radio antennas and about what frequency one should transmit during a particular period of an year. Ask same questions to an amateur and judge yourself. Hams practice, practice and experiment to make sure that Amateur Radio is there, and works...When All Else Fails!
People come into the hobby of amateur radio for different reasons. It can be for social reasons, for fun, for the thrill of communicating with hams in far off places (even on the International Space Station!). The become hams for a miriad of reasons. Many become interested in the hobby purely because of the technical enjoyment of it and for learning and advancing the radio art.
A lot of people who are interested in technology become ham radio operators. Ham radio can be very educational in a way the Internet can't touch: you can learn about analog electronics, and about the synthesis of analog and digital that is wireless data communications. You can build your own equipment from the ground up, while most computer folks only get to plug cards together. You can communicate around the world without an Internet - with nothing but air between you and the person you're talking to. You have the opportunity to communicate directly with astronauts and cosmonauts on board the International Space Station who are licensed Amateur Radio operators or can communicate through one of many orbiting satellites that hams have built and had launched as "hitch-hikers" along with commercial space payloads.
WHAT CAN HAM RADIO OPERATORS DO?
Ham radio operators use two-way radio stations from their homes, cars, boats and outdoors to make hundreds of friends around town and around the world. They communicate with each other using voice, computers, and Morse code. Some hams bounce their signals off the upper regions of the atmosphere, so they can talk with hams on the other side of the world. Other hams use satellites. Many use hand-held radios that fit in their pockets.
Hams exchange pictures of each other using television. Some also like to work on electronic circuits, building their own radios and antennas. A few pioneers in Amateur Radio have even contributed to advances in technology that we all enjoy today. There are even ham-astronauts who take radios with them on the International Space Station and thrill thousands of hams on earth with a call from space!
Using even the simplest of radio setups and antennas, amateurs communicate with each other for fun, during emergencies, and even in contests. They handle messages for police and other public service organizations during all kinds of emergencies and events including, but in no way limited to:
THE AMATEUR RADIO OPERATOR'S CODE
The Radio Amateur is:
CONSIDERATE...never knowingly operates in such a way as to lessen the pleasure of others.
LOYAL...offers loyalty, encouragement and support to other amateurs, local clubs, and the American Radio Relay League, through which Amateur Radio in the United States is represented nationally and internationally.
PROGRESSIVE...with knowledge abreast of science, a well-built and efficient station and operation above reproach.
FRIENDLY...slow and patient operating when requested; friendly advice and counsel to the beginner; kindly assistance, cooperation and consideration for the interests of others. These are the hallmarks of the amateur spirit.
BALANCED...radio is an avocation, never interfering with duties owed to family, job, school or community.
PATRIOTIC...station and skill always ready for service to country and community.
---The original Amateur's Code was written by Paul M. Segal, W9EEA, in 1928.
AMATEUR RADIO MOTTO
A well known motto is:
"When all else fails...
...Amateur Radio is there!"
The Dixie Amateur Radio Club has an Amateur Radio club callsign assigned by the FCC. It is W7DRC. Click on the callsign link to view the FCC callsign database entry for the club callsign: W 7 D R C
CALLSIGN LICENSE PLATES
Amateur Radio Operators who is a resident of Utah may apply to the the state of Utah Department of Motor Vehicles (UDMV) to obtain special callsign license plates. There is a one-time fee of $13 required to obtain the plates.Form TC-817, "Application for Personalized Plates"
Please click on the Utah license plate (or THIS LINK) to view information on how to obtain a set of callsign license plates for one of your vehicles.
You can also use this direct link below to open a PDF file to fill in the information using your computer and then print the form to mail in to the Utah DMV:
MORE INFORMATION ON AMATEUR RADIO
Please click on the link below to visit the "Frequently Asked Questions" on the American Radio Relay League's website for more information on Amateur (Ham) Radio: http://www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio
Please see the "Contact Us" link below to for the names, phone numbers and e-mail addresses of local Amateur Radio operators who you can contact for additional information and answers to your questions regarding Amateur Radio.