RIPLEY • The Northeast Regional Library is taking the first step to reopening its local branches with curbside delivery. Beginning on Monday, May 18, Ripley, Blue Mountain, and Walnut Branches will start offering the service on designated days and times.
Here is how it works. Patrons call the library once they arrive in the parking lot and a staff member will take requested materials to their vehicles. Library officials ask that patrons stay in their cars and open the backseat or trunk. A staff member will place books inside. This will avoid any direct contact between parties.
The following is the curbside schedule for branches:
Ripley and Walnut: Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 1-5 p.m.
Blue Mountain: Tuesday and Thursday, 1-5 p.m
Items may be requested by phone or online. If you haven't already done so, now is a great time to set up your online account: www.nereg.lib.ms.us, which lets you see all the available materials at all 13 branches of NERL. From your account, you will be able to place items on hold and renew your materials. You will need your library card number and PIN (the last four digits of your library card). If you require assistance placing online holds, feel free to call your local branch or email NERL at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"For those patrons unable to leave their homes or uncomfortable with the thought of even curbside delivery, we will also be gauging interest in-home delivery of books, whether through the mail or drop-off services," said Ripley Librarian Eric Melton. If you are interested in taking advantage of either of these services, please call your local branch and let them know.
"The pandemic has been a hardship on every one of the communities NERL serves. We are diligently working on plans that will allow us to once again welcome patrons inside. Still, safety for our staff and our public are our most important concerns. We do not yet have a date when we might reopen, but we promise that we will return as soon as conditions allow it."
When library doors open once again, there will be new, strict rules in place to help protect everyone involved. There will be limits on the number of people allowed in the buildings at once as well as a limit on the number of computers available to use. All items checked out will also undergo a two-week quarantine period in between uses.
"Even though these steps will look different from what you are used to seeing in library services, we look forward to seeing you again soon under our new normal."