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091218-C-SPAN-002

Davenport Public Library employee Christina Amador leaves the C-SPAN Bus while it was parked in front of the library Wednesday afternoon as part of C-SPAN's "50 Capitals Tour." 

A trove of history and current-events resources rolled into town Wednesday when the C-SPAN bus visited Moline and Davenport.

Moline High School students toured the bus Wednesday morning when the bus was parked at Wharton Field House. Then, in partnership with Mediacom and the library, the 45-foot-long, state-of-the-art bus visited the Davenport Public Library, 321 N. Main St., for two hours for anyone who wanted a tour and to learn more about C-SPAN.

The visits were part of C-SPAN’s “50 Capitals Tour,” which included stops in Des Moines and Pella, Iowa, earlier in the week, said Ndidi Obasi, C-SPAN marketing representative, who was among the tour guides.

“A lot of people are surprised to learn we’re not funded by the government,” she said. Visitors also are surprised to learn about the array of resources that C-SPAN offers.

Guests participated in interactive tours of digital media and archived resources that chronicle Congress, the Supreme Court, elections, public affairs and American history. C-SPAN representatives also gathered video responses from visitors as part of its “Voices from the States” opportunity for visitors to share viewpoints on the 2018 midterm elections.

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Among the visitors were Sheryl and Bob Steele of Sherrard. Bob Steele, who worked for the federal government as a specifications writer, is a history buff who keeps up with politics.

“Just to see what’s going on, I listen to morning interviews,” he said, calling the bus “a great idea for schools.”

Kate Hughes, one of four producers for C-SPAN’s “Book TV,” was among those on board who welcomed Katie Hawkinson of Davenport. “It’s really exciting!” said Hawkinson, who was surprised and delighted to see the bus when she came to pick up books she had ordered.

The bus included access to political and education resources, a smart TV and classroom area, a high-definition TV production studio for taped and live programming — “We have anywhere from one to three interviews per week on the bus,” Obasi said — and a 360-degree video station with coverage of high-profile events and behind-the-scenes tours of United States landmarks.

Funding for C-SPAN operations, including C-SPAN Bus visits, is provided by cable and satellite providers, Obasi said.

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