I expect that we will all look back on this strange time with bad memories and good ones, as well. We were sad to lock up the Library knowing there are a lot of readers, viewers, gamers and listeners out there who would like to be using those books, DVDs, videogames, and CDs. We know that people rely on the Library for the Internet, and for reading the daily papers. And we were pretty disappointed to send out a newsletter full of programs that are ending up canceled, though we are still very excited and happy to announce that we are no longer charging fines.
The bright side is that we still have a lot to offer you even when the doors are closed, and we can tell that you are finding them!
- Our Digital Services team is keeping a close eye on our holds for e-books and e-audiobooks, and we are able to order additional copies instantly. Our Libby app for the Illinois Digital Library (aka OverDrive) is getting quite a workout lately. We also increased the checkout limit from 5 to 10 at a time.
- We increased the number of checkouts you can have from Hoopla, bumping it from 10 to 15 a month per library card. One great thing about Hoopla is you never have to place a hold—everything they have is available right away. Check out their movies, music, and audiobooks.
- Another source of online content is Kanopy, who opened up some additional content for libraries to offer their patrons, including a variety of movies and programs for children.
- People who were coming to read the newspaper can read online through PressReader, including the Chicago and national papers, as well as papers in many different languages from all around the world. And magazine lovers should give Flipster a try.
- For you genealogy detectives, Ancestry.com (which we were only able to provide inside the Library) opened up to outside use, too, through our website.
- While we can’t reopen our computer lab until it’s safe, we have left our WiFi on so that it can be used from the parking lot. So if you need some free WiFi, feel free to use ours from outside the building.
- And keep your eye out for some new streaming programs featuring your favorite librarians. They will read stories, recommend books, demonstrate resources, and anything else we can think of that you might enjoy.
The building may be closed, but the staff is busy helping you, online. And we know that libraries become even more important when times are hard, so we will be there to help you later on, too. We are all in this together.
Don’t have a library card yet? Apply online here!