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Library stays connected despite being closed

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  • Library stays connected despite being closed
    The library is providing ways for the community to reach resources through online access. ALAINA CLARKE/Staff

The Jones County Public Library has staff who are getting books ready for reopening in the near future, but for now the library has had to adapt to other ways for the community to get resources through the library.

Leisl Hammond, the branch manager of the Jones County Public Library, said she looks forward to seeing the library back up and running, but she said she’s glad they are being cautious due to what could happen with COVID-19.

“The library is open just for staff right now, getting shelves straight and everything. We are making sure our books are in good condition for when we open back up to the public,” she said. “Right now, we are aiming to open back up to the public on June 1.”

She said the library reopening back up on June 1 is still not a certainty, but she hopes by then everything will work out. She said services may be different when they are open then, but she isn’t sure of those changes yet.

“All of this is a work in progress,” Hammond said. “Like all businesses, we are trying to adjust to a new normal. Our system has been able to offer online resources through all of this, which has been a blessing. We’ve had to adjust to this period.”

The branch manager said to access online books and resources, community members need to use their library card. She said if people don’t have a library card, they can go to https:// and apply for a digital card. She said the digital card is for online resources only.

Hammond said the local region of Jones County currently has three mobile hotspots, allowing up to five devices on them at a time. There is no login required. More information about the free wifi can be found by searching Facebook for Jones County School Transportation.

“The library is important since a lot of people still prefer to hold an actual book in their hands. Our computer lab is still very important to some folks because not everyone has the internet or a computer at their home,” the branch manager said.

She said the library has always been a gathering place for some in the Jones County community, so it’s important to still have the Jones County Public Library available for people and for them to be able to reach resources.

The branch manager said they have regulars who come to the library who are like family to the staff, so they definitely miss them. She said she hopes they can see everyone again, however they have to reconnect.

“I’m not certain anything we are doing now will be a permanent change,” Hammond said. “The community might like some of the changes, so we will have to see. In the near future I hope we will be able to open our doors again and have folks come in.”

For more information about the Jones County Public Library and the services they are providing to the community right now, visit www.facebook. com/JonesCounty PublicLibrary.