By SUNNY LOCKWOOD
Doors were open Friday night at the Paul Moeller Studio in San Andreas, Calaveras County's public access television studio, and nearly 50 people, many of them with families, attended an open house.
Children from 5 to 18, as well as older adults, tried out digital camcorders, TelePrompTers and control room equipment.
Ed Lark, studio manager, was on hand to demonstrate camcorders and microphones.
Independent producer Kelly Ellifritz showed visitors how to coordinate studio cameras from the control room.
Other producers demonstrated editing equipment and answered questions.
This was the third studio open house since Lark became manager in 2001.
George Fry, chairman of the Public Education Government Commission, which sets policy for the studio, said he was impressed with the number of young people who attended the open house.
"This is a great hobby for them," he said.
Celeste Fideldy from Copperopolis came by to have a look at the studio for her teen-age son.
"He's taking computer animation classes and I thought I'd check it out for him," she said. "But who knows, it might be fun for me. We have something really special here."
There were families from Valley Springs, Murphys, San Andreas, Mokelumne Hill and Angels Camp.
Lark said the open house helps people feel comfortable with the studio and might encourage them to sign up for classes.
The studio and all its equipment is available free of charge to Calaveras County residents who want to produce videos for cablecast on Channel 7, the public access channel for cable customers in the county. Lark said between 12,000 and 13,000 Calaveras households have cable and receive Channel 7 as part of their cable package.
Weekly Arts and entertainment guide for Calaveras and Tuolumne counties