I was both amused and disturbed by Conrad Klaus’ letter to the editor (Herald, Oct. 7). He has obviously not visited the Durango Public Library lately.
The majority of the residents in this community recognize that the library is far more than a book warehouse. It’s ironic that Klaus prophesies the demise of the library at a time when it is more relevant than ever. Library use in Colorado is growing every year, and our own beautiful new library almost ran out of library cards when it first opened.
The demand for library services has certainly not diminished with the introduction of new technologies. In fact, in times of economic downturn, public library use increases. The library contains collections of print, audio and video material as well as online resources. Services such as interlibrary loans make even more material available to the community. The library also offers public computers for those of us who don’t own a computer so that we too can access the Internet and World Wide Web. The program rooms are available for educational and cultural events. Children’s programming encourages early literacy skills.
It is far more cost effective, and better for the environment, for the residents of La Plata County to pool their resources for the purchase of material to meet information needs. The databases the library subscribes to would not be affordable
As information is made available in new formats, such as the e-book and electronic databases, the library provides them to us and the staff is available to teach us how to use them. Those of us who are life-long learners are empowered by the expertise of the library staff as they guide us in navigating all the material available to satisfy our needs for both recreational and serious research.
I invite Klaus to visit the Durango Public Library and learn about all the fabulous materials, services and programs made available to the community. He’ll see that while the book as we know it may become obsolete some day, the library never will.
Ruth Fleming, Durango