Library Interrupted

Since March 17, the Berryville Public Library’s building has been closed to the public, but that doesn’t mean we’re not serving our community and trying to do as much as we safely can. It’s been a bit of a learning curve for us–since the COVID-19 coronavirus is so new, we’ve had to basically write our own how-to guide to cope, based on the information currently available.

So . . . what are we doing behind closed doors for now?

Our lobby is open to the public. We’re not accepting money at this time for anything, so you are free to take what you need from the used book sale items stored out there. Late fees have been suspended. We can’t open our front doors to people, but we can talk to patrons through the glass. So, if you need to get in contact with us, you can talk through the door or call us at 870-423-2323, email us at, or message us through Facebook.

CV Blog - lobby 1 - Copy

CV Blog - lobby 2 - Copy

Our book drop has always been a place where people can return books, but we’re also using it to hand over printed copies or faxes to people. If you can email documents to us, we can still print for you. Please put all magazines, audiobooks, DVDs, and books you’re returning to us in the book drop. If you have one of our mobile hotspots, knock on the window, and we will have someone there to make sure it lands softly in the book drop so as not to get damaged.

book depository

Usually, when items are returned to the library, we try to get to them checked in as promptly as possible. Right now, however, we are waiting until we have a stack of returns before processing them.

That’s because we have instituted a sanitizing policy for all items that come into the library, and it is easier to do that if we process returns in batches rather than one at a time.

Our DVDs and audiobooks are getting their exterior and interior cases cleaned with Clorox wipes. The actual discs are being cleaned with a rubbing alcohol-water solution. Once the discs and covers are dry, they go back into circulation. Until then, they stand at attention.

DVD sanitation

With books and magazines, we are following an even stricter policy since we can’t clean individual pages. The covers get sanitized with Clorox wipes then they sit out for 24 hours before they return to circulation.

book sanitation

In between our sanitation rounds, we’re keeping a close eye on our staff computers to check Messenger and email and the lobby doors to see visitors and an equally close ear out for the phone. For each shift, certain staff members are assigned phones and computers, and those phones and computers are sanitized every time they change hands. We try to process those requests as soon as we can, though it is a little easier for us if you can schedule a pick-up time for items. But if not, no worries!

If you have a stack of books or movies or other items you’ve requested and are going to come pick up, we check them out to you and place them in one of our bags and write your name in the upper lefthand corner. We’ve set up a spot in the back for those and our Program-in-a-Bag activity kits. (As you may have noticed, we like to organize things. ๐Ÿ™‚ )

hold table

In case you’re wondering, those are our Hogwarts-in-a-Bag spring break activity kits for kids. ๐Ÿ™‚

Hogwarts in a bag

Whenever you’re ready to pick up your items, we’ll put your bag of items in our tub.

curbside tub

We’ll place the tub outside our side door at the bottom of the steps. You stay in the car until we shut the library door. Then once we hear you drive off, we’ll retrieve our tub. Please do not put returns in the tub. We want them to go through the book drop on the other side of the building.

curbside pickup


Our computers are one of the main things that patrons cannot access right now, but we still have our free Wifi on, and you’re welcome to sit in our parking lot in your vehicle and use it for as long as you like.

CV Blog - computer - Copy

One of the services we cannot provide right now is ILL outside of our system, but our sister libraries are still operating, so our deliveries within our system are still going through.

The number of patrons we serve on a daily basis has dropped, but with everything we’re doing, we’re staying pretty busy! In between pulling orders and sanitizing items and making programming bags, we’re also still maintaining regular library duties, like shelf-reading to keep the shelves tidy, weeding and purchasing to keep our collections fresh and diverse, and answering reference questions. Nobody wanted to be in the pictures, though, because we’re all a bunch of introverts! ๐Ÿ™‚

Please stay safe, everyone! If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments! You can check out our online library catalog to search for what we have in the system and to submit hold requests.


Author: berryvillelibrary

"Our library, our future"

4 thoughts on “Library Interrupted”

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