Although all locations of the Nassau County Public Library system closed March 18, its branches are still offering many services online and plan to open curbside service for the checkout of items beginning June 1.
The library system website is available at nassaureads.com.
Library Director Dawn Bostwick said the dates of the phased-in approach are tentative, but she hopes the branches will open to small groups of people by July 1.
Bostwick explained the process of the curbside service.
“Since you can’t come in and browse, all you have to do is to go the library catalogue online, place a hold on something, and when it comes in, we will give you a phone call or (send) an email that says your item is here, and then you can schedule an appointment to pick it up,” she said. “There is also a link on the website where patrons can schedule a pickup.”
The service will be available at all Nassau County library branches from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and again 4 to 5:30 p.m. In Fernandina Beach, Callahan, and Hilliard, pickups can be scheduled Monday through Friday, while the Yulee and Bryceville branches will offer the service Monday through Thursday. All types of items including movies and music can be checked out with curbside service.
While no fines have been assessed on checked out items since the library closed, Bostwick said the library is asking items be returned in order to clean them.
“We have already put out a call for books, so we are hoping people will return their items,” she said. “That will give us a chance to sanitize and quarantine them before they go out again. We have the reduced hours to allow staff time to do that.”
The library system continues to offer and add to several programs that can be accessed online, Bostwick said.
“We would like to let people know summer reading is still taking place,” she said. “There will be no face-to-face meetings probably until October, but we are posting virtual events. We have three story times a week being posted along with a partnership with PBS books, where we are doing one adult and one children’s event each month. We have some new partnerships with zoos, so we are doing virtual field trips to Busch Gardens and the Jacksonville Zoo and SeaWorld. They include activities for children. We have had a lot of parents homeschooling now, so we have added homework resources.”
Bostwick said all the new things being offered by the library have been put on the front page of its website. The site is responsive, so you’ll see all the same content regardless of what device you’re using.
People can also get a library card while the branches are closed.
“We have been able to offer online library cards since the library is closed, so if someone needs a card, all they need to do send an email to email@example.com and send a request and a copy of their photo ID and we will be happy to send them the card information online,” Bostwick said.