The Carolina Amateur Radio Club is a service-oriented club and has been in existence for more than 40 years. Originally known as the Carolina Repeater Society, it was an offshoot of the Palmetto Amateur Radio Club (which is the oldest South Carolina amateur radio club, having been founded in 1928 on “the Horseshoe” at the University of South Carolina).
Around 1976 the club name was changed to the Columbia Amateur Radio Club to include a broader range of interests, not just repeaters. From the beginning the club was active in promoting amateur radio, giving classes for new hams, and maintaining a testing team.
We promote the amateur radio hobby through:
- Monthly meetings
- Monthly workshops
- Bi-monthly VE test sessions
- Providing communications for local events
- Providing emergency communications during weather events or local emergencies
The Columbia Amateur Radio Club is an American Radio Relay League (ARRL) affiliated club.
What we do
We help those who would like to become licensed amateur radio operators by providing classes and FCC exams including the entry level Technician up through the Extra class license. We meet every month and in addition to socializing we often have guest speakers or work on projects like helping members erect an antenna or building radio kits.
The club provides volunteer communications for events such as the fund raising Tour De Cure and MS-150 bicycle races, the Run Wild cross country race and many others. Our members receive special training (if desired) to act as volunteer radio operators in local and state Emergency Operation Centers during disasters.
Mostly we have fun by getting together for such ham radio events as Field Day, a national contest event where we setup stations at a park, campground or other outdoor venue and run our equipment using battery or generator power to see how many other stations we can contact over a weekend in June.
We sponsor a “Hamfest” where members and other hams across the state come to “eyeball” people they have met on the air, swap equipment or find those irresistible bargains. We also enjoy getting together for an annual picnic and Christmas party.
We meet the first Monday night of every month at 7 p.m. at the SCETV building, 1101 George Rogers Boulevard, in downtown Columbia, SC.