december2019voicesandvotesmobileexhibit

WOODBINE — The Woodbine Main Street organization is excited to announce they are one of six Main Street communities in Iowa who will host a very special mobile exhibit next year.

A Smithsonian Mobile Exhibit called "Voices & Votes" will roll into town in late August 2020.

Greg Kolpin, social studies teacher at Woodbine School, helped lead this project along with several others including Maureen Allen, K-12 School librarian, and Deb Sprecker, executive director of the Woodbine Main Street organization.

Kolpin said it is very important for students to participate in something like this for a number of reasons, one is to understand why voting is so important.

"It's very important that they understand that it is our civic duty to vote and participate in elections," he explained. "It is our way of being able to make a difference when it comes to our government."

This exhibit will be around until the Applefest celebration, which always happens the last Saturday in September.

Housing the exhibit will be the Woodbine Carnegie Public Library. And the Main Street organization is thankful they are doing that, said Sprecker.

We'll be inviting school districts from around the county to visit as well as advertising to the region, attracting folks into our great little jewel of a downtown, Sprecker added.

In the meantime, the School District partnered with the Main Street organization to conduct interviews late last month.

Students talked with locals about a voting, campaigning or community engagement story they wanted to share.

Other topics that could have been discussed were about small town life, democracy or the importance of community.

These interviews (both audio and video) will be uploaded to the Smithsonian Institution for potential selection and use in the national kiosk for the "Voices & Votes" exhibit.

"[This is] very exciting for the students and community as Iowa will be the first state to host [it]," Sprecker said.

The project gives Woodbine voices the opportunity to be part of a national project, she added.