With rapidly changing news and perceptions of the COVID-19 pandemic, BHPL has just made the difficult decision to close the library to the public temporarily.
Effective at 6:00 PM, the close of business tomorrow, March 17, the library will be closed until at least April 1 (no, this is not a joke), to be reassessed as new information and recommendations become available
- March 17 will be the last opportunity for a while to borrow library materials. Stock up! We ask, if possible, that you either call ahead at 374-5515 or reserve items in our online catalog so that staff can pull those items throughout the day.
- The bookdrop will remain open for the duration—returns will always be accepted. If you have an oversized item not suitable for the bookdrop, call ahead and staff will meet you at the door.
- All current due dates for library materials will be extended to 4/4 and no overdue fines will be assessed during this time period.
- Has your library card lapsed or have you not yet gotten one? Normally you need to sign up in person, but for the duration of this closure, to provide access to digital materials, local year-round and part-time residents can sign up by phone.
- Further we ask that if you are not feeling well, have traveled to a possibly affected area or are in a vulnerable population, that you return to the library only after this pandemic has passed.
Our staff will still be working and will be here to help in any ways we can. Please keep in mind that you can still call or e-mail us with your reference questions. Also, digital services (e-books, e-audiobooks, etc.) remain available from our website. The library’s WiFi will also remain available on the exterior 24/7.
A lot of you have expressed concern for our “beloved” staff (to quote numerous people).
Nobody who works at BHPL will lose any compensation due to the coronavirus.
Let’s be frank, this is a rotten circumstance, one we wish we didn’t have to face, but we hope that we are doing our part to help minimize the impact that the new coronavirus will have on our community. As has been said many times, if we are successful all of this will look like an overreaction in hindsight. Let’s hope we never find out otherwise.
Oh! Before I go, FYI here are the
results of today’s patron poll
: Most people (64.9%) favored making some further changes. Of those 33.5% said close the library temporarily, 31.4% said we should open just the lobby, providing “to go” services. Just 27.4% suggested staying the course and limiting large gatherings.
As always, I thank each of you for your support for and engagement with your library. I hope to see all of you on the other side of this morass.