Dear Patrons and Friends of the library,
I hope this newsletter finds you well. Please know the staff and I have not forgotten about you! We look forward to when we can reopen the library and see you all again.
I have received lots of questions about when we will reopen. The staff and I are working hard to make a smart plan for reopening when it is deemed safe to do so. We will be following all government regulations and guidelines about how the staff and the public can safely return to the library for library services.
Some of the questions we have encountered:
1. Will the library reopen when the county moves to a Yellow Phase?
When Carbon County moves to a Yellow Phase and businesses are able to reopen on May 22nd, the library will begin preparations to reopen as well. However, the services and hours of operation will be different.
2. When will the library building reopen?
We will be reopening with limited patron service on Friday, May 29th. We will be following directions and guidelines from the Governor and the Office of Commonwealth Libraries on how we can reopen.
During this period of Phase Yellow, our available hours will be Monday through Friday from 10-4 and Saturday from 10-1. We are happy to answer your phone calls and emails during this time.
3. How will services be different?
Prior to any library services being available, the library staff will return to the library building to prepare for reopening. Currently, and during our preparation time, we are accepting returned library items through the outdoor book-return box. All returned library items will be quarantined for at least 72 hours before re-shelving or being checked out to patrons.
Since the Yellow Phase of business reopening requires social distancing, we will also be changing services to dramatically limit physical contact between staff and the public. In lieu of allowing patrons to enter the library and browse the shelves, we will offer new services like “curbside service” in order to circulate library items to library patrons.
In addition, we hope to extend our online services to members of the public who do not currently have library access: we will soon be offering online library card applications.
4. What other changes might happen with the library and library services in the future?
Due to continued social distance requirements, we will not allow patrons into the library during the early stages of reopening. When we can admit patrons into the library, we may see long-term limits on how many people can be allowed in the library at one time, how much in-person help staff can provide to patrons, the hours and days we are open, as well as limited computer use for the public. We will be following the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and the Office of Commonwealth Libraries regarding the offering of all these services.
5. What about Summer Reading and library events?
Due to continued social distance requirements, we are not scheduling any in-person programs in the library at this time. All our programs will be held online for the foreseeable future. This includes our Summer Reading Program, “Imagine Your Story.” Within the next month, we will introduce online sign-ups and online programs for our summer reading program.
6. When are my items due?
We have extended the due dates for currently checked out items. However, you may return your items at any time. We request that you use the book-return box outside the library building to return your library items.
7. My library card is expiring soon. What do I do?
Library cards with an expiration date between January 2019 and June 2020 were automatically renewed and have a new expiration date of July 1, 2020.
I know our patrons miss the library because I do too! The staff and I miss our patrons most of all. However, please remember that we are not gone just because the building has been closed. We are all excited to return to the library and begin offering patrons access to our physical resources. You can continue to use our website to access e-books, audio-books, magazines, databases, and so many other resources. You can also find us on Facebook and other social media platforms if you just want to reconnect with us. Please feel free to call or email me with questions and concerns.
Stay safe. Be well! We can’t wait to see you soon!
Kara J. Edmonds
Dimmick Memorial Library