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Jamboree on the Air 2023

Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) is an annual event where Scouts across the world meet together on the air and the internet for a virtual jamboree. During the JOTA event my son’s Scout Troop was camping at nearby Camp Resolute in Bolton, MA so that is where set up our JOTA field stations. We had a great day on the radio!

Chris Farnham (W1YTQ) setting up a field radio, preparing to get Scouts on the air for JOTA

I was just one contributor to a great event. Troop 119, Lexington is fortunate to have a handful of adults and Scouts with amateur radio licenses. One of our Scouts invited members of his radio club. Friends from Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society showed up and brought their A game. They set up a full power, field station operating single-side-band, FT8 and they even made a CW contact or two. We had three different stations operating on 17, 20 and 40 meters.

Friends from the Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society set up a full power field station operating SSB, FT8 and CW. They made our JOTA event really special and got a lot of Scouts on the air.

I set up my Xiegu G90 on 20 meters. Throughout the day, Scouts came by to learn about radio and get on the air with me. The bands were open. JOTA, POTA’s Support Your Parks event and the New York QSO Party were all happening on the same days so there were a lot operators on the air.

Three events! JOTA, POTA’s Support Your Parks and the New York QSO Party were all happening on the same day.

I worked single-side-band most of the day with Scouts. As Scouts came by I’d answer questions and explain some basic radio and RF propagation concepts. They learned enough radio operating terms and etiquette to talk on the air. As you can see, it was pouring rain all day. The rain made setup a little more challenging but the Scouts were in good spirits and participated enthusiastically.

W1YTQ helping a Scout get on the air

Our troop will be offering Radio and Electronic Merit Badges soon as a two-for-one class. From the turnout last weekend I expect broad participation and am looking forward to it.