EAST CENTRAL — Library patrons in Humboldt, Tisdale, Melfort and Nipawin will be able to sign-out books and other media through a new curbside pickup program.
The service, which starts on June 15, will allow patrons to place hold requests, and check out items owned by their nearest curbside pickup location.
To use the service, patrons are asked to place a hold on items owned by a curbside pickup location, at which point the library will notify them when their items are ready. The patron then schedules a pickup time, and picks up their items from the designated pickup table while following on-site pickup instructions.
Patrons can hold onto the items for up to four weeks.
“We’ve had supportive feedback from many patrons, who have expressed how much they have missed having access to library materials, as well as how much they are looking forward to the eventual reopening of our libraries,” said Lindsay Baker, community services librarian with Wapiti Regional Library.
“We think it’s fantastic that we can provide some limited services to our patrons earlier via curbside pickup, while still following the province’s guidelines and protocols.”
Wapiti Regional Library closed all their branches to the public on March 20 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The regional libraries have been offering patrons access to educational and entertainment resources through their online content since then.
“The TD Summer Reading Program is moving online, as well as our annual reading challenge for kids up to age 13,” Baker said. “In addition, we’re moving regular programs such as story times, crafting, challenges, themed activities and such online too.”
She said the online summer reading programming will last until Aug. 31, at which point the final draws will be done for the reading challenge prize winners.
“That’s also when our term with the programming assistant will be over, so we’ll have to reevaluate as we get further into the summer how things are looking as far as what libraries will be able to do in the fall, whether kids are able to return to the school in the fall and such.”
Patrons can find a weekly schedule of their online activities on Facebook at facebook.com/wapitilibrary.
“Some of our branches are actually doing some of their own initiatives too, to keep in touch with their local communities, Baker said.
“Our Tisdale Library has been doing some of their own video content, there has been some story times and read-alongs for older youth. Other libraries are doing things like creating scavenger hunts for their communities, doing art shows by submitting artwork to them and using the front windows to display it.”
Public libraries are slated to reopen in Phase IV of the Saskatchewan Government’s reopening plan. A date for Phase IV has yet to be announced.
For full details on Wapiti’s Curbside Pickup Service, patrons can go to the Wapiti Regional Library website at wapitilibrary.ca/curbside.
“We’re thankful so far,” Baker said. “A lot of patrons have been really supportive and have been asking regularly for, ‘When can we come back’ and saying that they miss us, so that’s been wonderful. We hope that patrons, even if they don’t have a library card, anybody within our region is welcome to take part in this summer’s programming and we hope that they enjoy it.”