High temperatures and humidity did not deter club members from the annual FieldDay weekend. The FieldDay Contest was held at the Sutton Fair Grounds, June 25th and 26th 2005, a first for the club. In previous years, it has been at Maple Hill, but this year the club tried a different venue to get more local exposure from the community.
A diverse group of members participated in the competition this year. Many of the hams brought their knowledge of radio, communication, and emergency services knowledge from their related fields to the simulation this year in the Sutton Fair Grounds
Hams from around the community including one Toronto native made the trip saying:
"We're from Toronto, via Wasaga Beach, and after work Friday night we head to the cottage and prepare the van. By the time we left the driveway it was already starting to warm up.
"The roads were a little busy, but not too bad. There is some nice scenery around the top of Lake Simcoe, and some flat lands a little further on. Now as we turned the corner on to highway 48 I saw, what I though was a huge black sheep dog romping along the fence line towards the road, its movements were a little awkward, but it was hot.
"As we got about half way, it stopped, stood up on its hind legs, and just watched our van. It was not a dog; it was a small Brown Bear. If the fence stood 4 feet off the ground, the bear was twice that height, so I estimate it reached 8 ft when it stood, and over 300lbs, not a cub, but not full-grown either.
"I kept on driving, and would not you know it, the animal went back down on all fours and picked up to a slow run towards the road. I comfortably out cruised it, but it did cross the road behind us, and the oncoming SUV had to panic brake to avoid hitting it.
"We were between HWY 12 and the 17th SR. I am not really a girly girl, but being from Wasaga/Toronto, I did not realize there were bears in them there woods so close to Sutton.
"Man did I think twice about putting up the marker signs at the turn after that."
While the band captains were setting up stations, the gang got the food station set up. All the breakfast, lunches, and dinners were thanks to them for the whole weekend. After set up, some invited guests signed in from EMS, RED CROSS and on Sunday, even a reporter from the New VR showed up. (Though I never saw anything on the tele, or in the newspapers.) The club is very grateful for their presence and would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for showing up. Even the kids who came out had lots of fun in the sun this year.
Both days a variety of members and guest came through to talk and for some well appreciated shade. A group from the OPP had one of their mobile communications RV onsite and the 80-meter station was in there all night this time.
Sunday always goes faster than the first day, and this was no exception. Only a few guests came on the 2nd day. Then it was already time to tear down. This involved a lot because many of the members did not go home and they slept onsite.
The practice of putting up an emergency station does not seem as realistic as what the people in New Orleans have recently gone through, but the site was operational for 24 hrs.