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What do satellites, microwaves, tornados, friends anywhere on the planet, the Manitoba Marathon, floods, talking to the the space station, helping the weather office, Katrina, digital communication and service to the community have in common? Amateur Radio is the answer. 

On August 9th and 10th radio amateurs from across Canada will descend on Winnipeg for the National 2008 Radio Amateurs of Canada [RAC] Annual General Meeting and the Winnipeg Amateur Radio Club’s [WARC] Convention .. called a HamFest for its combination of technology and camaraderie and the fact that amateur radio operators are often called Hams. 

Civil Agencies such as Manitoba’s Emergency Measures Organisation have formal working relationships with amateur radio and will be represented at the Convention as will the Department of Science Technology Energy and Mines which has the role to build on and promote technological excellence.

RAC represents amateur radio operators nationally and internationally and has as its key role to promote amateur radio. "You have a brilliant opportunity to learn about this fascinating pastime on August 8th and 9th. Radio amateurs bounce their signals off the moon, experiment with electronics, practice traditional short wave radio and help their communities during events and disasters. Radio is accessible to all ages and abilities and we work closely with civil agencies, the Red Cross, the CNIB, and a broad cross section of Canadians." states Dave Goodwin, VO1AU/VE3AAQ, President of the Radio Amateurs of Canada.

WARC’s role is to promote amateur radio locally. “Wireless was the cutting edge technology for a hundred years and is still a cutting edge technology that is essential for modern life and often is the only means of communication when disaster strikes.” Says Geoff Bawden, VE4BAW, President of WARC. “ it’s also fun and builds great friendships.

This event has been 2 years in the planning, which will finally pay off with Hams meeting face to face, as compared to over the airwaves. “We are all such good friends who may have never met each other” say Derek Hay, VE4HAY chair of the Organizing Committee. “We will have everything here from digital voice to amateur satellite communications, and other leading edge technologies. Manitoba Emergency Measures Organization and the Canadian Forces will be present with their signals equipment.

All events are at the Hilton Suites Winnipeg Airport, 1800 Wellington Ave., Winnipeg, on August 8th and 9th. There will be a Tradeshow, Market, Technical Lectures, as well as the RAC Annual General Meeting and Gala Dinner.

The public is welcome to come to the Tradeshow: 12:00 [noon] to 4:00 PM on Saturday August 9th. 

The media are welcome throughout all of the events. 

For more information about the Convention, RAC Annual General Meeting or radio in general call Geoff Bawden, VE4BAW, at 782-2615