BY SARAH CLENDINENG
Fort Madison Public Librrary
FORT MADISON – The Fort Madison Public Library will reopen to the public on Tuesday, June 2 and summer reading sign-up will begin on Wednesday, June 3. The library will return to its regular hours with the first hour, 9:30-10:30, Monday through Friday, reserved for vulnerable populations who have any immunocompromised or other condition recognized by the IDPH as uniquely susceptible to developing a serious health condition from the disease known as Covid-19.
During the past weeks, we have been developing methods for helping to protect both library patrons and employees. We ask that patrons who visit the library please maintain 6 feet between themselves and others. We would also encourage patrons to wear facemasks when they visit the library to protect other patrons and library employees. Seating areas will be limited to help maintain social distancing and there will be floor signage around the circulation desk to guide traffic flow.
There will be fewer computers available so that they can be spaced farther apart. Due to this reduction in the number of computers, patrons will also be limited to one hour of computer use each day with no extensions. Study rooms in the library will be available for use but only for one or two people, depending on the size of the study room. The Schaefer Meeting Room will only be available during library hours and capacity will be based on social group guidelines from the Governor’s Office and the IDPH.
We are currently quarantining library materials for three days after they are returned to the library. In order to minimize the points of contact with returned library materials, the inside book return will not be available and all library materials must be returned through the outside book drop.
We understand that if you become sick, you may want books or DVDs to use at home. However, please do not come to the library if you are sick. If you have someone who can come to the library in your place, call the library and we can arrange for them to pick up items for you. We will also continue to offer our books by mail service. Books by mail is not something that you must use long term, it is available for short periods of time if you are unable to leave the house for a few weeks or months. It is also for more than books as we can mail you any library materials. If you already have a library card, we can just start mailing books to you. If you don’t have a library card, there is a registration process that may take a couple of days. Please also feel free to take advantage of books by mail if you are in a vulnerable population and are limiting your activities outside your home.
There will be summer reading activities this year though we are still putting the finishing details on what weekly programs will look like. We will not be able to put out a flier with all activities for the next two months but will be providing weekly schedules that can be picked up at the library and found on Facebook or the library website each Wednesday. For those of all ages who want to start reading, reading logs, as well as information about activities for the week of June 8-12, can be picked up at the library beginning on Wednesday, June 3.
For additional information or questions contact Sarah Clendineng, (319) 372-5721, SarahClen@fortmadison.lib.ia.us at the Fort Madison Public Library.