Another Bandwagon?!?

If you're looking for something to do this weekend or next week, the July program page has the info you need.

We would greatly appreciate it if your weekend activities included voting for the Railroad Museum of PA in USA Today's "10 Best Transportation Museums" contest. As of yesterday morning (7/14), the museum was in 4th place out of 20 nominated museums. You can vote once a day through noon on Monday, July 18.

Last week I wrote about finally jumping on the Hamilton bandwagon and my enthusiasm for the musical. This week, feeling more adventurous I guess, I downloaded the Pokemon GO app to see what the fuss was about. The various museum listservs I subscribe to, not to mention numerous Facebook and Twitter posts, were exploring the impact of this almost instantly popular game on museums and historic sites nationwide (see this article in Travel+Leisure for an overview). To say the least, my enthusiasm level isn't quite the same as for Hamilton (which I'm listening to as I write this). So far, sites on the Trails of History aren't reporting lots of gamers, but we are seeing interest. The potential for people to "discover" museums and historic sites they were unaware of because of the game is certainly exciting.

Pidgey captured at Washington Crossing Historic Park (via Facebook)
The potential is also for disappointed gamers who find that they must pay admission to access the museum or historic site to capture creatures or visit Pokestops and gyms (did I get that right?). Or have trouble with cellphone signals (very few of our sites have wifi). When something captures the popular imagination so quickly, it can be very difficult to determine how/if to use limited resources (especially staff and volunteer time and energy) to latch on. To balance the fear of chasing a fad that will be over soon (ask me about pogs) with the fear of missing out on a real sea change in engaging the public. For now, we're gathering info and seeing what happens. Stay tuned. Or comment to let us know what you think. (Needless to say, but said, that these opinions are mine alone.)

In non-Pokemon news...

This coming Sunday evening, July 17, two Trails of History sites will be featured on PCN-tv. At 6 pm, you can catch Bushy Run Battlefield on the network's "Battlefield Pennsylvania" series. And at 8 pm, Joseph Priestley House will be the focus of the "It's History" series. (In between, "PA Books" will explore the 2nd day of the Battle of Gettysburg, which is noteworthy too.)


Post a Comment