In honor of this year’s National Library Week, the Minburn Public Library is currently working to incorporate the theme, “Find Your Place at the Library,” through online resources and other community services.


Even in spite of the impact of COVID-19, the library has had 435 checkouts since the beginning of the year, and 286 patrons have accessed Bridges since the beginning of March, which exceeds their normal monthly usage by about 200 patrons.


Minburn Public Library Director Nicole Connick has also delivered or arranged pick up for over 100 library items since the middle of March, with the library also promoting the use of their online ebook and audio service, Overdrive.


“We strive to include our community in all the things that we do every day,” Connick said. “Libraries are not just about books anymore. Your place might be volunteering to shelve books, being part of one of our children’s reading groups, craft club, painting class, so many different things that we offer to bring the community together to support each other.”


With the library closing its doors in order to help prevent the spread of the virus, staff has continued to post weekly activities such as online story times, scavenger hunts and a stuffed animal parade. The library also keeps a bin of craft supplies and games as well as a food donation box outside the building for people to give what they can and take as needed.


“We need to work harder at making sure our patrons have the things they need in a way that is safe for everyone. I’ve made copies of worksheets for parents trying to teach kids from home, dropped books off to elderly patrons, delivered bags of produce provided by the pop up produce stand from Waukee Christian services, and collected food donations for those in need. Many more things than checking out books alone,” Connick said.


In addition, the library has begun the process of moving to their new location at the old Minburn Elementary School building, which will increase their footage from 620 square feet to over 4,000 square feet, including programming space. Since upgrades are needed before patrons can start accessing the building, staff are taking the time while they are closed to work on those changes. The hope is that the new location will be open to the public starting this summer but is dependent upon the effects of COVID-19.