Visitors to the Iowa State Capitol may soon have more automated options for touring the buildings and grounds.
Cell phone tours may be expanded, where visitors call a number for an audio or video presentation of the various points of interest.
Capitol tour guide Joan Arnett says it’s another great way to take in the beautiful Iowa statehouse and the 47 monuments nearby.
“It seems to be popular with young people,” Arnett says. “They’re very comfortable with that technology, but it really is a great option, especially a great option when tour guides aren’t available.”
Officials are analyzing how much the service is being used, with an eye to expanding it to include all the buildings in the state capitol complex.
The tour ranges from the World War Two monument outside to the popular Iowa First Lady doll exhibit indoors. “I personally have been doing this for 37 years,” Arnett says. “I love it that we have options and the more options we have, the more people we are able to serve, so I think the cell phone tour is a great option.”
Especially, she says, when a tour guide isn’t available. Maps of the cell phone tours can be downloaded from the Iowa General Assembly website. The cell phone tour can be taken any time outdoors and indoors during the hours the statehouse is open.
That’s 6 A.M.to 5 P.M. weekdays and 9 to 4 on Saturdays, sometimes longer when the legislature is in session.