Although the Roseburg Public Library building remains closed, there is a lot of activity behind the scenes to stay engaged with the community.

The most visible way library staff connects with patrons is during the drive-up pickup service every Tuesday from 3-6 p.m. In fact, last week, patrons checked out 555 items and staff served 109 vehicles.

To prepare for that rush, staff issues new cards and updates accounts for patrons, helps place holds and pulls requested material from the shelves throughout the week. On Tuesdays, last-minute holds are gathered, then all requests are checked out and sorted on tables in the lobby to await pickup.

Patrons also regularly see Youth Services Librarian Aurora Oberg and Library Aide Mark Breckenridge at online storytimes. Aurora and RARE AmeriCorps Participant Katie Fischer film weekly storytimes in the Children’s Room, and Mark creates musical storytimes from his home. All videos are located on the library’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/roseburglibrary.

Library staff is working on a number of other projects, all designed to improve patron experience.

Of course, materials are returned every day in the outside book drop, and staff checks them in, quarantines them from three to seven days and returns them to the shelves.

Speaking of shelves, staff is conducting an inventory of the collection, which entails scanning every item and comparing it with the current database of records. This is time-consuming because the library has 88,000 items, but it helps ensure the patron catalog accurately reflects the library’s holdings. It also alerts staff to missing items, particularly those, such as classics, that are important to repurchase.

I currently spend time in the adult fiction stacks removing materials that are outdated, no longer popular or in poor condition. Freeing up space makes room for new materials, which Aurora and I continue to purchase regularly. Aurora weeds the entire youth collection annually, and I, with help from Circulation Supervisor Liz Hendershott, Aurora and Katie, weed the adult collection every 18-24 months.

Staff also has been working with specific areas of the collection. The catalog records for automotive manuals were improved to aid in searching, and spine labels were changed to aid in locating books on the shelves.

The library has about 600 items in Spanish, and staff is adding summaries in Spanish and English to the online catalog. Patrons who access the catalog at roseburg.biblionix.com are able to keyword search in either language.

Staff also translates policies and other materials, most recently the library’s strategic plan documentation, into Spanish for the library website at www.roseburgpubliclibrary.org. Patrons may request hard copies of policies or the strategic plan by email at library@cityofroseburg.org or phone at 541-492-7050.

Library staff members are filling in for volunteers by processing materials, scanning documents for records retention purposes and many other tasks that make the library run smoothly.

Despite all of the challenges of the past year, the library staff remains available to serve you. Please contact us for your literacy and information needs.

Kris Wiley is the director of the Roseburg Public Library. She can be reached at kwiley@cityofroseburg.org or 541-492-7051.

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