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Beach Libray usage is encouragingly up

December 4, 2013
By Dr. Leroy Hommerding , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

Activities This Week

Wednesday, Dec. 4, 10:30 a.m. Preschool Story Hour in Kid's Place multi-purpose area

Also on Wednesday, 1:30 p.m., The FDRs: A Most Extraordinary Couple.

Thursday, Dec. 5, 10:30 a.m. Getting Started with Your iPad, Pre-register.

Friday, Dec. 6, 10:30 a.m. A Trip Back: Italy

Also on Friday, 1:30 to 3:00 p.m. Writer's Group

Monday, Dec. 9, 10:30 a.m. Windows 8, Pre-register.

Also on Monday, 3:30 p.m. Community Movie Presentation

Tuesday, Dec. 10, 10:30 a.m. Lifestyles of a Better Brain

Activity Details

Dec. 4 finds Jeri Diehl Cusack sharing the interesting lives and activities of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. Come to this session and you'll walk away with additional insights.

Dec. 5 offers a chance to appreciate and learn more about Italy with the experience of Carol Ann Landry.

The Writer's Group on Dec 6 is open to beginners as well as experienced.

If you need more computer familiarity, consider the Windows 8 on Dec 9.

The culmination of the many adults and children who participated in the Human Resiliency Reading over the past few months is shared with the Movie that incorporates many of the participates in our community.

Angel Duncan will help one explore normal memory and symptoms of dementia on Dec 10. There are tips highly beneficial in helping reduce the risk of Alzheimer's.

Formats

Last week I spent some time writing about having published material in print as we have done for a long, long time, and about offering titles as e-books. Which format is chosen is less important than in that reading is done, and hopefully more reading. I appreciated the comments that my remarks seemed to generate since that writing and am grateful you shared views and experiences.

There remains much still to be determined when it comes to the electronic world and social media. 43 percent of people who have signed up for Twitter either never use the service or have deactivated their accounts as reported in The Week, 11-1-13, p. 30. In reading the November 25 issue of Wall Street Journal it also pointed out that thousands of dummy accounts were set up in Twitter to increase the number of followers that some businesses have--it's a marketing ploy but does not actually prove that the number in fact points to actual usage or real people. This is a part of our world that still needs to be worked out.

Usage

Number of people using the library continues to be dramatically higher. We are happy that the completed construction project and added options are getting such a grand response. We felt there was a need and the stats are showing that the projection was both timely and accurate.

Attendance is over 50 percent higher in October, as has been true for the past year. We are also starting to see higher numbers for titles being checked with October showing an increase of 20 percent. As you might imagine, the increased usage places more demand on staff and I hope when we are very busy that your patience will allow a smile and a slight wait if needed.

Also encouraging are the numbers who are enjoying the Toddler's area. The value of this area, along with Kid's Place only supports what is seen in national surveys where 94 percent of parents report that libraries are important for their children; 79 percent of parents value libraries as "very important." 30 percent of parents with children say that they are patronizing their libraries more because they have a young child and 71 percent of parents point to libraries as being "a safe place for children" (Pew Research Center).

Wi-Fi

The Library Commons on the third floor offers Wi-Fi access and enables one to do so in a pleasant environment with a great view of the water. Use of cell phone is welcome there too as is eating. The Cafe' is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm. Support the Cafe' during your visits as it needs regular users and cannot just exist by itself.

If you have a headset, please keep your voice in moderation so that others are not bothered. We find that many times people talk louder on the cell phone than they do in regular conversation without realizing the increase in volume. Those business owners using the computer and phone are advised to limit usage to your immediate space and not to an entire area of the Library Commons. You are not paying office space but using a service that is available to all who choose or need to use it today.

Homepage

October saw a 60 percent increase in use of the library homepage, www.fmb.lib.fl.us which leads me to wonder if more people are discovering the increased access and use of databases. Of particular note, explore the Newspapers and Magazines database under E-resources.

Expenses

We try to keep expenses as low as possible. It's also a fact that when community members work together, the expenses can be edged even lower. We appreciate many little things: picking up paper scraps so they do not litter the carpet or tile, wiping one's feet before entering the library (there is a large mat built into the pathway before entering the front doors) so that sand is not dragged onto the stairs or into the carpeting. We appreciate smokers who respect the no-smoking policy with no smoking on the grounds or library, with the attendant butts not left on pavers, or in planters or elsewhere that necessitates extra cleaning.

We lowered our tax income by over 6 percent this year and hope to continue moving in that direction in upcoming years. Our millage is, in the current year, 29 percent lower than the county library system, something we cannot achieve without constant attention and efforts to keep expenses lower.

Hours

A recorder at 765-8162 gives the hours we are open if you call in when we are closed. Open hours are Monday and Wednesday 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.; Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 9 to 5; and Saturday 9 to 1. We look forward to seeing you.

 
 

 

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