The National Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting will once again be open for tours this Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. The West Chester landmark has opened on the third Saturday of each month since July, so the public can have the opportunity to learn about the history of Voice of America.
Since the building, the Bethany Relay Station, was built in 1944 until 1994, it delivered U.S. news in a total of 52 different languages throughout the world and was originally created under the direction of Powell Crosley Jr. to combat Germany and Japan shortwave transmitters, which shared anti-American propaganda to the world.
“Locally we want people to understand the history that has been made in West Chester and all the history of broadcasting that has been developed here in Greater Cincinnati,” VOA board chairman Ken Rieser said in a recent interview with WestChesterBuzz.com.
“There is also a certain draw to the people behind the Iron Curtain, the people in China and places where there have been problems understanding and knowing what the truth was. This place is a draw for them. They just want to see it.”
To see it for yourself, donations of $5 for adults and $1 for children under 12 are suggested.
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In the near future, the museum’s board is planning to begin fundraising so it can turn the old Bethany Relay Station into a revenue-generating museum. According to Rieser, it will take roughly $12 million to convert it into the museum his board wants it to be.
As of right now, it consists of exhibits featuring the old relay station; Media Heritage’s Greater Cincinnati Museum of Broadcast History; the Gray History of Wireless Museum; and the West Chester Amateur Radio Association control room.
In addition to Saturday’s tour, the museum is looking for volunteers and docents, and is planing a Work Day to help clean the interior of the museum on Saturday, Jan. 12.
Adults and high school students are urged to participate. Teens, who need community service hours, will receive a letter from the museum board after completion of their cleaning chores.
“We’ve had a lot of exterior improvements to the museum over the past couple of years, and our inside housekeeping has suffered from outdoor foot traffic,” Rieser said. “We’ll have a list of specific cleaning projects we want to accomplish by Jan. 12, but are looking for people with good attitudes who can dust, clean display cases, move boxes and materials and help clean floors.”
Those wishing to volunteer can contact Dave Snyder at DavidSnyde@aol.com.
For more information about VOA museums, go to www.voamuseum.org.
The museum is located at 8070 Tylersville Road in West Chester.