Jacksonville Area Museum Featured in First of Two “Illinois Stories” Episodes

By Jeremy Coumbes on October 29, 2020 at 6:42pm

Anyone who missed out on The Jacksonville Area Museum’s sneak peek event this month can get a glimpse inside tonight from the comfort of their own homes.

The Jacksonville Area Museum will be featured on the Central Illinois television show Illinois Stories tonight. Illinois Stories is a local feature show on PBS station WSIU, formerly the Network Knowledge WSEC.

Museum Board Chairman David Blanchette says Illinois Stories has had a interest in the museum for sometime now, and came to shoot the episode just this month.

The Illinois Stories crew came in a few days after we had our Work In Progress Tour at the museum and they filmed a half hour segment about the museum as it exists now, it’s point in development and how we got to that point. That is the segment that is going to air in the coming days, and then they committed to come back once the museum is open and operating to do another segment.

So really they are following the development and it is really going to help us get the word out about what we are doing here. And those that couldn’t go on the Work In Progress Tour, please watch Illinois Stories. They did spend enough time to make a half hour show out of it, and it will give you a real good idea of what we have been able to accomplish.”

The episode will debut tonight on WSIU at 7:00 pm, and then will be shown again on Sunday at 4:00 pm and Monday at 6:30 pm.

Blanchette says he has known the host of the show Mark McDonald for many years now through his work with the State of Illinois and says he is thrilled with what McDonald and his team have put together for the show.

Blanchette says work is continuing on the museum itself with the board hoping to have new flooring installed over the existing concrete floors in the near future. He says as far along as the building has come, work is also in the beginning stages for future development and preservation of the museum itself.

We are in the process of trying to establish our not-for-profit foundation to support the museum, and if anyone would like to co-chair that foundation, I would appreciate hearing from them. I have asked several people who already have a lot of commitments in place and they have politely declined. So having someone to co-chair, that would be a great help so we can get that off the ground and start fundraising in a big way.”

Blanchette says anyone who is interested in assisting with the foundation, or volunteering or making a donation to the Jacksonville Area Museum can contact the board via their Facebook page.

The Illinois Stories episode premiers tonight on WSIU at 7:00 pm, and is also available online at wsiu.org/illinois-stories