Hastings Public Library stays connected through closed doors

Published: Jan. 12, 2021 at 5:17 PM CST
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - With city offices remaining closed, the Hastings Public Library is doing what it can to stay connected with the community.

The library has been extra quiet as people have not been allowed inside for months. Just this week it has been open by appointment to let people use the computers, printing, and makerspace. Library staff understand people in the community utilize their internet to apply for jobs, file unemployment, and many other important needs.

“We’re just really excited to have this opportunity to keep extending our service to people who really need it,” Public Relations Coordinator Morgan Karel said.

People are not allowed to browse for books during these appointments but can reserve books from the online catalog. Karel said they have gotten a lot of support with this system and are seeing kids’ books fly off the shelves the most.

“Our lockers are being used constantly. There is a one to two day wait when you put books on hold so we’re really happy to see that,” Karel said.

The library has phases of reopening but will remain with their current restrictions until the city gives the go-ahead.

“We want to see how this responds first as well as keeping track of making sure we are staying safe and we are monitoring the COVID situation as it continues,” Karel said.

Appointments can be made over the phone or online. They continue to plan for virtual events for the rest of the year and hope to be together with the public soon.

The library isn’t entirely sure when they’ll be fully open to the public again but they encourage people to still check out books to be picked up in their lockers and to reserve a time to use the library.

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