Posted: Wednesday, June 1, 2011, 9:25 am
One look at June-August calendar of events proves without a doubt that summer is a busy time of year at Worthington Libraries. The staff has worked hard to put together a wide array of programs, which are sure to be crowd pleasers.
The Summer Reading League, presented in partnership with the Columbus Clippers and sponsored by the Friends Foundation of Worthington Libraries, will inspire kids to read throughout the summer with the goal of earning a ticket to one of three baseball games.
by Chuck Gibson
Making the summer reading program more experienced-based is a direct result of patron feedback. While parents recognize the value of the program, they have also expressed concern about the prizes, both from an environmental perspective ("we don't need any more trinkets in our house or the landfills") and that of their children ("a canvas bag is not much of an incentive for my kids"). In addition to the experience of attending a baseball game as a family, reading prizes also include the opportunity to visit the Columbus Museum of Art and reduced admission to both the Worthington Community Center and classes at the McConnell Arts Center.
Developing community partnerships is an important part of what we do at Worthington Libraries. Another example is our new "Decanted" book discussion group for adults that will meet monthly, beginning in June, at House Wine.
A library's ability to grow and nurture relationships with other community organizations and businesses is an important measure of its success. As a matter of fact, it's one of the reasons Worthington Libraries was selected as the National Library of the Year in 2007 and a contributing factor to our current five-star rating from Library Journal.
In the digital age, when so much information is literally at your fingertips, the library's role as a community center—providing a physical space where people can gather and share ideas—is becoming just as important as its role as an information provider. While libraries traditionally measured their success in terms of the number of items circulated, we now look at a whole host of factors, such as user visits, program attendance and the number of registered borrowers, to gauge overall impact and community value.
In 2010, our number of registered borrowers increased nearly 20 percent and more than 48,000 people attended library programs. Another sign of the times was the 53 percent increase in circulation of digital books available through the library's website.
As the world of information and how it is accessed continues to evolve, our libraries will change, but the goal of providing people with excellent service that's tailor-made to our community will remain the same.
I look forward to seeing you at the Library this summer!