What do you get when you cross the Addison Public TV station with NEDSRA's special needs participants and a couple of inspired staff? You get a lot of fun in an audio-video-camera-microphony kind of way.
Channel 77 is a new summer program that started in July for Northeast DuPage Special Recreation Association clients with high-functioning intellectual disabilities. The program's goal is to introduce participants to an actual TV studio and teach them how to run the cameras, microphones, lighting and audio equipment.
They're also learning how to write script and develop and edit a short interview segment for broadcast on public TV.
"Our idea is to offer something creative and new in our cultural arts programming," said Maggie Goode, recreation coordinator for cultural arts at NEDSRA.
"It's a great asset to have the Addison TV station available for free to organizations in the city and makes this program possible."
Addison took over a private cable TV station in 1982 that is being used mainly for governmental agency broadcasts. The station and studio also provide public access programming to its citizens. The broadcasting stations can be found on Comcast channel 6 or AT&T U-verse channel 99.
Mike Tynus, media production coordinator for the Addison Community Affairs Department, oversees the NEDSRA program. Tynus has worked for 24 years at the station, where he edits and develops video graphics for local Addison TV programs.
He is "teaching the teachers" how to run the equipment and then plans to let the class run itself.
"We are a smaller studio so the equipment is not overwhelming. I look forward to working with NEDSRA and inspiring their people to learn how to broadcast a TV program," Tynus said.
Channel 77 will run for six consecutive Tuesday nights this summer. NEDSRA has limited the program to six to eight participants in order to give each a more fulfilling job in the production and development of the TV segment.
Jose Moreno, 27, was the first to sign up for the new class and is excited about the program.
"I wanted to learn something new at NEDSRA and this seemed very interesting. I hope to learn how to interview people and make good videos that can be shown on TV. Also, it gives me a chance to meet new people and maybe some new friends," the Bensenville resident said.
At the end of the program in mid-August, a TV segment will be produced and broadcast based on the station's requirements.