A push to boost visibility of local museums

April  18, 2014

      There are plenty of museums in the area, but not so many visitors. Hoping to change that, The Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau, along with The Dispatch and The Rock Island Argus will host a museum summit on Monday. Participants will learn how to boost their visibility and visitors.  

      Roger Ruthhart, managing editor of The Dispatch and Argus, says there are over forty museums between Galesburg and Maquoketa, and each is important to our community. 
      "You know we have the Hauberg Museum for the Native Americans. We have the German-American Museum. We have the Arsenal Museum and the Colonel Davenport House, and just a lot of these things. We've been fortunate to have just as a way of retaining the history of the area."

      Ruthhart and Joe Taylor, president and CEO of the Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau, will give tips on ways museums can use social media to promote themselves. Plus, the Iowa Museum Association will talk about how small museums can ensure their survival. 

      "There's a lotta things I'm sure that have been tried, and failed that I'm sure people don't want to repeat, or ideas that one museum has had that worked really well, that someone else never thought of, so I guess just sort of create a culture of we're all in this together instead of we're all competing for the five people we want to come through our door this week."

      The free museum summit will be held Monday, April 21st from 3 to 4:30 pm at The Dispatch Annex Building at 515 18th Street in Moline. 

(Photo courtesy of the German American Heritage Center in Davenport).