Cool temperatures and changing colors turn our attention to what we know is coming. As fall gives way to winter, like it or not, soon we will be spending more time indoors. A great place to do so is the local library.
In La Plata County, that means Durango, Pine River and Ignacio public libraries, and Reed and Delaney libraries at Fort Lewis College, all of which provide residents free access to materials.
“Materials” these days does not just mean hard copy books (though they remain the majority of items checked out), but also services like e-books, e-audio, digital downloads, databases, public computers, meeting space, kid and adult programs and now, a new motor vehicle registration kiosk at the Pine River Library. So, too, are new park and recreation facilities to be completed in November.
Shelley Walchak, Pine River Library director, is excited about the developments. “This is not your grandparent’s library,” she wrote to the Herald (Sept. 6). “Libraries now serve as community centers, not just warehouses of books and places to study. Books are one of many ways our library assists in ‘connecting people with possibilities,’ our vision statement.”
Though it is not currently popular in Bayfield, we hope the DMV closure goes smoothly and the kiosk meets most residents’ needs. Combining services in one location is efficient and has the potential to be a win-win for residents seeking “one-stop shopping” opportunities, and for the library seeking to educate the public about its offerings and attract new users.
One way the Durango Public Library is going about that is through its library card discount program, a partnership with 60 local businesses offering discounts to library card-holders through the month of September (coinciding with National Library Card Month) to support local merchants.
Connecting people to possibilities and strengthening communities – that’s our local public library system at work. Take advantage of it and encourage others to as well.