BELLBROOK — Natural disasters highlight the ways that amateur radio operators serve their communities.

Amateur radio not only provides a way for citizens to communicate for their own safety but a way for them to assist others when cell phones and other communication systems fail or are overloaded.

For those interested in obtaining an FCC amateur radio license, the Greene County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (GCARES) is offering three amateur radio license classes starting Sunday, Sept. 17.

The classes will meet from 7-9 p.m. each Sunday through Nov. 12. A test for all classes of licenses will be given at 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 19 in the Community Room at Beavercreek Township Fire Station 61.

The entry level Technician Class course will be held in the Bellbrook Amateur Radio Club Clubhouse, Room 1, Sugarcreek Elementary School, 51 South East Street. No experience is required and there is no minimum age required to earn a Technician Class license.

The General Class course will be held in the Training Room at Beavercreek Township Fire Station 61, 2195 Dayton-Xenia Road, just west of Orchard Lane.

The extra class course will be held in the Training Room at Fairborn Fire Station 2, 2200 Commerce Center Boulevard, just south of Dayton-Yellow Springs Road.

There is no charge for the classes and Morse Code is no longer required to obtain any amateur radio license. The classes are supported by the Bellbrook Amateur Radio Club (BARC), the Upper Valley Amateur Radio Club (UVARC) and the Xenia Weather Amateur Radio Network (XWARN), in addition to GCARES.

To register for a course or for more information, contact Bob Baker, N8ADO, by email at [email protected] or Jim Gifford, KD8APT, BARC secretary at [email protected]. You may also register in person at the first class.

Amateur radio is authorized by the FCC and you must register with the FCC and obtain an FCC Registration Number (FRN) before getting a license. To visit the FCC website visit

Textbooks may be purchased from the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL) at