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Library Annouces Temporary Closure For Children’s Room Remodel

From Claudine Perrault, Library Director

The Children’s Room of the Estes Park Public Library will be undergoing a major transformation in late December. Through generous grants provided by the Library Foundation and the Friends of the Library, the popular children’s area will receive physical improvements and a new design.

“We can’t wait,” said Youth Services Supervisor Kerry Aiken. “New carpeting and furniture will spruce things up. Comfortable seating will beckon you to cozy up with a good book. Tables will allow space for kids to do homework and projects. A new catalog station and signage will make materials even easier to locate.”

Because the construction will impede access and safety within the library, the building will be temporarily closed during the remodel. The library will close beginning on Monday, December 15, and will reopen at 10 am on Monday, December 29. The closure will also allow for several other physical improvement projects to be completed during that time.

The library staff has prepared a “Q and A” to help patrons understand the work being done and to explain what services will be available during the closure.

Q: Wasn’t there a remodel already done on the library recently?

A: Yes. Phase One of the remodeling was completed in May of 2007, with the redesign of the library’s main floor and the installation of the upstairs Computer Commons. However, the Children’s Room has not received any significant physical improvements since it opened in 1991. Phase Two of the remodeling plan will address that by giving the Youth Services area an exciting new design that will be functional and appealing for years to come.

Q: Are the costs of the remodeling coming out of the library’s general tax fund?

A: No. The costs are being paid through the private fundraising efforts of the Library Foundation and the Friends of the Library. This remodeling project has been planned for several years and is the primary project that was underwritten by grant monies in 2008.

Q: Will other construction work be going on during the closure?

A: es. In addition to the Children’s Room, several other important projects are targeted for this time. New, improved lighting fixtures will be installed in the atrium area. The lobby will be repainted and the popular literary-themed mural created by artist Gary Keimig in 1991 will be relocated to the lobby, giving visitors the immediate welcoming sense of a “library space.” New treads will be installed on the stairwell, and new efficient low-flush toilets will be installed in the public restrooms. Library staff will be sorting materials on work-area shelves, closets and desks in preparation for a work-space redesign to take place next year. Library staff and volunteers will also be moving all shelves and materials out of the Children’s Room and then moving those materials back before the reopening.

Q: Should I stock up on books and other library materials now?

A: Absolutely. Library patrons should make plans to stock up on materials before Monday, December 15, to ensure they and their family members have plenty of reading and listening materials to enjoy through the closure period.

Q: Will staff be answering the phones during the closure?

A: Yes. Library staff and volunteers will answer the phones during the closure from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. This will not include December 24 or 25, which are library holidays.

Q: Will I be able to pick up holds or interlibrary loans during the closure?

A: Yes. Staff will contact patrons who have holds or interlibrary loan items that have arrived. Those who have such items may go to the library’s delivery door on the building’s north side and ring the outside buzzer for service. Patrons must have their library cards with them to enable the check-out process.

Q: May I go online and place items on hold during the closure?

A: Yes. The library’s online catalog is available at EstesLibrary.org and allows cardholders to place holds on items in the collection (not including children’s material, which will be inaccessible). Staff will pull any accessible items that have been requested online and contact the patron by phone when the items are ready for pick-up. To access this service, cardholders must have a PIN number. If you have not received a PIN number, contact library staff to set one up.

Q: With a PIN number, may I also check my account online?

A: Yes. You may log in with your library card number and PIN number to view your library check-outs and renew materials.

Q: What if I have items to return during the closure?

A: Items that would normally be due during the closure will be given an “extended check-out” date. These extended due dates will appear on the printed receipts given at the time of check-out. In addition, the outside book drops will remain accessible during the closure for anyone who would like to return materials.

Q: Will the library have books available at any other locations in town?

A: Yes. At various locations around town, the library stocks free assortments of paperback books (called “Paperbacks to Go”) which can be borrowed without a library card. These locations are: the Senior Center, Dad’s Laundry, Salud Clinic, the Medical Center ER waiting area, Trail Ridge Apartments, The Pines, as well as the Post Offices in Allenspark, Drake, and Glen Haven.

Q: If I have homework or research questions during the closure, is there someone I can contact?

A: Yes. The library participates in AskColorado, an online reference service where anyone may log in and receive assistance from a research librarian in a live chat-style format. The free service is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. To access it, visit EstesLibrary.org, go to the Research tab, then click the AskColorado logo.

Q: What if I need Internet access during this time?

A: Patrons are encouraged to make use of local businesses that may offer this service, as well as the other wireless “hot spots” available for wireless users. A printed list of these businesses is available at the library.

Q: Will the library accept donations of books and other materials during the closure?

A: No. Due to construction, receiving space will not be available. Community members are encouraged to hold any book donations until after the library’s reopening on December 29.

Q: Will any preschool storytimes be held during the library closure?

A: Yes. One special off-site storytime will be held on Friday, December 19, at the Leggett Building of the YMCA of the Rockies. This storytime is free and open to the public. This special event will feature Helen Trencher, “The Percussion Lady” who incorporates songs, drum playing, and movements into a “magical event” called “Rhythm Fun.”

Q: Will there be a party to celebrate the grand reopening of the Children’s Room?

A: Yes. Everyone is invited to the Reopening Celebration on Friday, January 2, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. featuring refreshments, a special appearance by literary character Maisy Mouse, and live music by Cowboy Brad and Kathy Fitch.
The Estes Park Public Library wishes to thank the community in advance for their support and patience during this renovation time. Library staff looks forward to welcoming patrons back into the newly-improved facility beginning December 29.

© 2014 Estes Park News, Inc

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