Police & Fire

Roxbury Amateur Radio Expert Readies for Weekend of Roughing It

WMAR'S Field Day Site Credits: Edward E Donnelly Jr
Bridget Donnelly handles communications as her Sister Clara watches on. Credits: Edward E Donnelly Jr
Clara Donnelly's also gets in the action! Credits: Edward E Donnelly Jr

ROXBURY, NJ - A Roxbury based group of amateur (“ham”) radio operators is looking for new members and its founder is inviting the public to participate in this weekend’s American Radio Relay League Field Day to get a taste of things at their worst.

 At the event, amateur radio operators will stay outdoors and work around the clock to set up field radio communication stations, get on the air and contact thousands of other operators in the United States and Canada, said Kenvil resident Edward Donnelly, president and founder of the West Morris Amateur Radio Club. He said the field day is the group’s yearly “shakedown run” for the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) and it's designed to simulate working in less-than-ideal conditions.

 The field day will take place at the Lakeland Little League field at 20 Sparta Road in Stanhope on June 24 and June 25.

Sign Up for E-News

“Field Day is a way for hams to get outdoors and have fun under some difficult conditions,” Donnelly said. “But it’s also a chance to fine-tune emergency communication skills. We use generators and battery power, and we set up antennas in the field. The idea is to put together self-sufficient, working stations quickly and begin making contacts.”

Amateur radio operators like Donnelly establishing emergency communication networks during floods, fires, earthquakes and other major disasters. They were on the air during the 9/11 terrorist attacks and throughout Superstorm Sandy, Donnelly said.

 During Sandy, some of the group’s members - who are part of the township Office Of Emergency Management - “manned the radios and emergency hotline phones at the township’s OEM Command Center,” Donnelly said. “We communicated to other emergency personnel that were out in the storm doing such things as welfare checks, identifying and reporting back-road hazards such as downed trees and electrical wires. Getting people who needed shelter to the shelter.”
Emergencies aren’t the only time the radio buffs help. Donnelly said they participated in the recent MS Walk at Horseshoe Lake Park. “We place personnel at locations along the walk to report back the progress and also if someone has a medical emergency,” he said.

A big part of field day participation is showing ingenuity. Radio operators “practice communication skills under primitive conditions, with generator and battery-powered equipment and portable antennas,” according to Donnelly. He said special awards are given for those who use alternative power sources such as solar, wind and methane.

 “To become a member, we suggest that the person come out to one of our meetings or events,” Donnelly said. “Once they decide to join, they fill out a membership application form. If they want to get an amateur radio license, we can guide and help them accomplish this. The entry license is called a technician class license.”

 He said a big investment in radio equipment is not necessary. “Entry equipment can be as cost-effective as a hand-held radio,” Donnelly explained. “Members of the club can assist and help program it for local repeaters and other emergency frequencies. The cost goes up for other equipment, such as a base radio with general coverage worldwide frequencies.”

These amateur radio operators are members of the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES). In this capacity, they have voluntarily worked for a variety of public organizations providing disaster services, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army, state and local emergency management agencies and the National Weather Service Skywarn program, Donnelly said.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Berkeley Heights’ Women of the Week (WoW) Series features Beth Ferris Sale

March 18, 2018

In honor of the women who are driving change, blazing trails and nurturing society, the Berkeley Heights Diversity Council is pleased to announce an exciting initiative called, Women of the Week (WoW) Series. In the spirit of community, we wanted to honor the women right here in Berkeley Heights who are impacting the world in their own way for the remaining weeks of Women’s History ...

Registration is Now Open for Horse Care Workshop Beginning 3/31

March 20, 2018

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. — Somerset County Park Commission Lord Stirling Stable is offering Horse Care Workshop 101 for adults and youth seeking to gain experience and confidence around horses through a combination of non-riding activities and hands-on practice.

Horse Care Workshop 101 will be held at Lord Stirling Stable, 256 South Maple Avenue in Basking Ridge, NJ beginning Saturday March ...

Local Top Cops, Government Officials Helping 'March for Meals' Program

SUMMIT, NJ - Elected and Law Enforcement officials along with volunteers are joining SAGE Eldercare this month as it participates in the 16th annual March for Meals – a month-long, nationwide partnership of local community organizations, businesses, government officials and caring individuals, who come together to ensure that homebound and ...

Union County Students to 'March for Our Lives' Saturday in Union

UNION, NJ – Students from all over Union County will be walking from Burnet Middle School to Town Hall on Saturday morning, March 24, in an anti-gun violence march.

Led by steering committee chairman Colin Sumner, the march, which has the support of Senator Joseph Cryan, Moms Demand Action, Union County Chapter, and the Union County Freeholders, is not aimed at taking away guns, but ...

2018 Gov. Livingston Highlander Softball Clinic Set for March 19

Come join and learn from the 2017 Union County Softball Champion Gov. Livingston coaches and varsity players on Monday, March 19, 2018 from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Activities will include the following fastpitch softball skills:

Batting Techniques
Throwing Mechanics
Base Running

Who: Children grades 1-7 of any skill level or ability

Where: Gov. Livingston High School, 175 ...

NPHS Student's Response to After School Walk-out Plan at NPHS

March 14, 2018

A group of students file into a science classroom amid a nervous din of chatter, the air is electric with excitement and nervousness. This small group of approximately 30 students are a studious bunch, largely members of the sophomore class with squeaky clean administrative histories. They are currently preparing to defy authority and stand up for what they believe in, even though they had been ...

New Providence's Allen W. Roberts School Gets Security Walk Through by Police Department after Bomb Threat

March 12, 2018

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - The New Providence Police Department sent a letter to parents and guardians of students at Allen W. Roberts Elementary School after a non-specific bomb threat was reported on Monday afternoon.

It's the second threat  reported at a New Providence school in March. The first threat was reported on March 5th at New Providence High School.

Emergency ...

Avon Loses Its Last ‘Grand’ Hotel to the Claw of an Excavator

March 17, 2018

AVON-BY-THE-SEA, NJ — In less than two days, an Avon-by-the-Sea landmark that stood for 130 years was reduced to a huge pile of rubble. The Norwood Inn no longer stands on the corner of Norwood and Second Avenues — the last of the stately hotels that once graced the streets of Avon.

As onlookers gathered around the demolition site on March 15 and March 16, an excavator clawed its ...

Upcoming Events

Tue, March 20, 7:30 PM

Mountain Park School, Berkeley Heights

Boy Scout Open House - Troop 368

Education Giving Back

Wed, March 21, 5:30 PM

Great Swamp Watershed Association, Morristown

Coffee & Tea Tasting - FREE GSWA Event

Arts & Entertainment Education Food & Drink

Wed, March 21, 7:00 PM

Summit Free Public Library, Summit

increase your networking and interviewing iq

Business & Finance Other

Thu, March 22, 7:00 PM

Summit Free Public Library, Summit

The Long march home: An American Soldier's Life ...

Education Other


Fri, March 23, 9:30 AM

Dunkin Donuts, Berkeley Heights

Let’s Meet Up to Clean Up! BH Walks, a New ...


JCP&L Representative Describes Utility’s Actions During Storm Quinn, Answers Residents' Questions

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – The format of this week’s  Berkeley Heights 'Here and Now' was turned on its head this week. Mayor Bob Woodruff reviewed what happened in the township following Storm Quinn and its predecessor Storm Riley, complete with statistics. He then asked a representative of JCP&L questions about the utility’s response, and how it was ...

Berkeley Heights, Here and Now: Redevelopment Updates

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Mayor's Round Table has been rebranded to "Berkeley Heights, Here and Now." This new format will continue to provide updates from Mayor Bob Woodruff, municipal offices and the Communications Committee want to hear from citizens, businesses and community organizations.

Included in this episode, Mayor Bob Woodruff addresses the status of the ...

Dear Susan: Beauty Tips from a Beauty Expert, Spring Edition

SUSAN BARBAGLIA, owner of Skin Deep Salon and Spa in New Providence, offers a wealth of knowledge and expertise as a leader in the beauty industry. With over thirty years experience in skin care, Susan can answer your most challenging beauty questions. Email your ...

You Want a Check for How Much!

 My first admissions gig was working for a small liberal arts college with a pretty hefty price tag.  Picture me at a college fair: name tag in place, pile of brochures ready to go.  An eager family would walk up and we’d start a conversation.  One of the first questions I’d get from parents was about cost and the moment that $50,000-plus figure left my mouth I ...

Now That The Dust Has Settled…Smart Tax Moves In 2018

Now that the dust has settled, here are some smart tax moves to lower your taxes and/or avoid higher taxes/penalties in 2018. These steps may be especially helpful if you live in high property and high income tax states (e.g. New Jersey, New York, California) since state and local tax deductions are capped.  Unfortunately all these changes mean you’ll need more time and energy to ...