The Covid-19 stay-at-home policy is about to end in many states. Let’s share what we are finding on how to handle reopening libraries whenever that comes our way: preparing the collection? Promotion? Communicating with our congregations? What else do we need to consider?

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  • Any ideas for Summer Reading Club???  That is one of the favorite things for our kids as they are rewarded with medals at the end of the summer.  I am thinking to call it Quarantine Summer Reading Club.

  • Fay Hudnall, Blue Valley Baptist Church, Overland Park, KS

    Our unique time RIGHT NOW is the perfect time for encouraging our church
    families to use our Atrium OPAC!  What a  perfect time to suggest resources to help individuals and families as they struggle with many issues!   What a perfect time to provide books and DVDs for kids who have stayed in and home for such a long extended period!   And always, what a perfect time to share Jesus!   
    Getting Atrium ready for online reserves/checkout was not hard.  First, I called tech support at Book Systems.  They told me I needed an email account to link to each of our libraries.   We are not networked together, so each of our two libraries would need a separate email address.  Because my church uses a tech company for our computer issues, I had them set up an email account for both of our campuses.   (I contacted the church office first for their approval, advice, and assistance, and they told me to contact the tech company.). Then, I called tech support at Book Systems again, and they helped me add the email address at the right location in administration and change a few other settings.   They were so patient and helpful!  I had seen on Eva Nell’a library (is there one any better?) that she used the patron number (in Atrium) for the username and the patron’s last name (in all small caps) with the patron number for the password.  I asked Book Systems to set our settings that exact way and I added a note on the login page to remind users of their username and password.
    That’s it!   So easy!!!!   I used tech support and can’t take any credit for figuring out the process!
    Since our library has been closed, and our users do not need their patron number for check out, (we just use names since we know almost everyone!) 
    letting everyone know their username and password is our next hurdle.   For our trial run, I contacted by text a few regular patrons and invited them to be a part of the trial run of curbside delivery.    For those who responded, I texted the the login information to them and added instructions on how to find our library from the church website.  THEY LOVED IT!   We had 55 items delivered curbside today.   The patrons texted my phone when they arrived, and I delivered the items out to their cars.  Now, for the church family, I am having a link attached to our website tomorrow (or the next day) that will have request information on becoming a user of our online library!   We will also advertise this link in our church’s weekly email news.  I will need to answer each request for username and password, and will include directions for using our OPAC.  (Whew, I love cut and paste!).  I plan on giving a number to text when they arrive...which will be my number or the other librarian’s ...but not be identified that way.   I think this plan will work!!!   
    If I can do online reserves/checkout, others certainly can do it, too!  
    By the way, Book Systems has lowered the price of Atrium for church library use!  No better time to make the switch!
    • We are doing curbside checkout, also. It has been such a blessing for our congregation!  At least that's what patrons tell us.  We just have patrons email the library account with their requests and the other librarian and I try to have their selections ready when patrons pull up under the canopy by the front doors. If requested items are not available, we try to tell people in advance so they are able to make other selections or give us a general idea of what they would like.  Our catalog is not online as we have not yet finished inputting our entire collection into Concourse.  

      Question: Am I able to put what I currently have online while still adding to the OPAC?  

      • You can absolutely upgrade from Concourse to Atriuum without all of your items cataloged. Once you decide to convert, you will send your data to Book Systems so they can move it from Concourse to Atriuum. During that process you do not add anything to Concourse. After the conversion is done and you have successfully moved to Atriuum, then you can start cataloging again. There is a learning curve (as there is with any new software), but you will be able to do so much more with Atriuum than you can with Concourse. If you want your library to be fully accessible to your patrons, Atriuum is the way to go. 

        • Thanks so much.  This is exactly what I needed to know.  Here in the Chicago area  we will not be holding in-person services until probably July at our church, but would like the congregation to have access to our OPAC as it is slowly available.  One of my continuing projects. It is also great to know an upgrade to Atrium would be worth the cost.  

          Thanks, everyone for your assistance. 

      • Yes.  Adding items to our catalogs happens all the time. No problem to OPAC.

        • You're right, items are being added all the time. I was just thinking I have about 3/4 of my collection to add to the OPAC yet. Maybe it would be better to upgrade to Atrium now rather than waiting to finish adding everything to Concourse first. 

  • Fay Hudnall is the library team leader with Blue Valley Baptist Church in Overland Park, KS. On June 2, she sent me the following to post for her:

    Our libraries at Blue Valley Baptist Church will not be doing our regular book club this summer.  It broke my heart to realize we would not have lots of fun and memories with our big and little kids... and check out lots of books!  We always have the pleasure of adding several new patrons to our library each year during our book club.  Not meeting new people broke my heart as well.  (Not being around people at all has been so hard for me!)  Also, we will not be having our traditional summer story time for the little kids at our churches.   Our last story time in 2019 at the Antioch campus had 74 kids and parents.  It was our best attended session of the year.  BUT, we do have different plans in the mix!.
    Our libraries changed from the Concourse program  to Atrium in January.  With our new program, we will be offering  BVBC curbside library service in June since our library will still be closed.  All safety procedures will be followed as outlined by our church staff.  Each Tuesday we will have a pickup time from 9:30-11:00 a.m  and 5:00-6:00 p.m.   This Tuesday we will have a trial run with a few of our most frequent patrons, and then this service will be announced to our church family in our weekly online newsletter.   We had 42 items reserved for tomorrow and I am excited to see how the pickup time works out.  My story time reader teaches at a preschool in Kansas City.  Since March, she has been having three story time sessions with her class each week on Facebook.  She is very willing to record story time sessions for Facebook!   I am so happy!  Each of our story time sessions will feature Bible stories from books in our library.  So, we make plans but sometimes plans are changed!   God is still on His throne, still in charge, and still loves us!.   Next year we will use the book club and story time theme we planned for this summer..."Go Bananas for Books!"  
  • Adding to our research. Source: Demco.

    COVID-19 & Libraries: Your Questions Answered

    COVID-19 & Libraries: Your Questions Answered
    Pediatrician and Children's Librarian Dr. Dipesh Navsaria answers your questions about how to quarantine books, safety measures for reopening, and mo…
    • It's interesting this article discusses an arbitrary 72 hours quarantine when the IMLS and CDC webinar said paper materials are not at risk and a 24 hour max quarantine should suffice. They also recommended not wiping down paper products with wet things, because there is the risk of damaging them.  I worked in a Children's hospital and they always wiped down the covers with a Clorox wipe (most were laminated covers, not cloth, but some paperback) and left them to dry, then reshelved. Still a lot of conflicting info out there even by "experts".

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