We’re ready to safely serve you- in person, at curbside, or by mail

On Monday, November 2nd our libraries open to the public, allowing patrons to browse the shelves, read newspapers and magazines, or check email at a computer station. Open hours and building capacity are limited in each location and patrons are advised to practice social distancing and keep visits to 30 minutes or less.

The health and safety of our staff and visitors is our top priority as we have developed our reopening plans. We are balancing our responsibility to serve the public with an ongoing commitment to protect public health.

Take a look at what we’re doing to slow the spread and what you can do to help.

What We Are Doing

  • Returned Items are quarantined for 24 hours before being re-shelved.
  • Library Staff are wearing masks.
  • Common areas and surfaces are regularly cleaned and disinfected.
  • We encourage the use of our online digital collection at ncwlibraries.org.

What You Can Do

  • Wear a mask and follow social distancing guidelines.
  • Do not visit the library if you are sick.
  • Limit your visits to 30 minutes or less.
  • Use our digital library at ncwlibraries.org
  • Utilize our Curbside Pickup or Mail Order Library anytime you can’t visit the library in person.
 

Information on our Current Services

In Person Visits

Each branch offers limited daily hours in the morning or afternoon for in-person browsing and checkout of materials. Patrons are required to wear masks, follow social distancing guidelines, and limit their time to around 30 minutes. Furniture and computer station availability may be limited. Reservation of meeting space is unavailable at this time and all programs and events will continue to be virtual.

Check your local library’s open hours HERE.

Curbside Pickup

Pick up library materials in a safe, contact-free manner. No appointment needed, simply arrive by car, on foot, on bike and we’ll bring you your reserved materials.

The Curbside Pickup process is easy

  1. Place library materials on hold – online or by calling your local library: instructions here.
  2. Wait for notification that your holds are ready – email, phone, or text.
  3. Call to let us know you’ve arrived (numbers are on the signs)
  4. Follow directions on safely picking up your materials

Check your local library’s Curbside Pickup hours HERE.

Digital Services

Access our digital content all day, every day. We’re regularly adding content and platforms to meet your needs and peak your interest.

Drive-up WiFi

We’ve expanded the range of our WiFi at all 30 of our locations and at our headquarters. WiFi is free and available 24-7.

Book Returns

Return materials through the manual book drop at select locations. Returned materials will be quarantined and remain on patron accounts for a minimum of 24 hours before being checked in.

 

Phase 1

Available

Continue to provide online services and programs

  • Digital collections
  • Online Programming
  • Ask NCW Libraries (phone, email or chat)
  • Free expanded WiFi

Not Available

    • All libraries remain closed to the public
    • Mail Order Library is closed
    • All book returns remain closed to the public

Phase 2

Available

Staff and patrons in buildings with physical distancing and health protocols in place.

  • Library buildings open at 25% occupancy for limited services
  • 30 min. visits or less recommended
  • Curbside Pickup available
  • Select book drops open to return materials
  • Mail Order Library services
  • Free expanded WiFi

Not Available

  • No large public gatherings inside libraries or in-library events
  • Meeting rooms closed

Phase 3

Available

Staff and patrons in buildings with physical distancing and health protocols in place.

  • Library buildings open at 50% occupancy for limited services
  • 30 min. visits or less recommended
  • Curbside Pickup available
  • Mail Order Library service continues
  • Free expanded WiFi

Not Available

  • No large public gatherings inside libraries or in-library events
  • Meeting rooms closed

Phase 4

Available

NCW Libraries returns to standard business practices while continuing to offer services in new ways.

  • Libraries open
  • Meeting rooms open, pending Administration approval
  • Large public gatherings allowed inside libraries
 

Frequently Asked Questions

As we prepare to resume services at some of our branches, we know you have many questions. We will continue to update these FAQs to help you know what to expect while libraries are closed.

When will libraries be open to the public?
The WA State Department of Health issued new guidance for opening libraries during Phase 2 and 3 on October 6th. Library Branches throughout our five-county service area will open on November 3.

Are Mail Order Library and Interlibrary Loans available?
Yes!

When can I return items I’ve checked out?
Book drops are open at all locations.

Are any library services available while buildings are closed to the public?
All of our online services continue. Curbside Pickup is available at all locations.

Will you be offering any story times or author events in the near future?
To protect the public and our staff, all story times, STEM programs and author events have gone digital. Checkout the full schedule of events here.

Can you help me with accessing the digital resources or placing a hold?
We’d love to!
Our general question line is available weekdays from 8am-6pm at 1-800-426-READ (7323).
Our Online Chat is available weekdays from 9-11am and 3-5pm.
Our IT team is available to help with our digital resources weekdays from 1-3pm at 509-888-8155.

How will you ensure items are safe to checkout?
We are following guidance from the CDC as well as the Washington State Department of Health which recommends a 24 hour quarantine on library materials.

 

Access the Library from Anywhere at Anytime

During this challenging time, there are many ways you can continue to access library resources without visiting your local branch through our digital resources.

 
We’re ready to safely serve you- in person, at curbside, or by mail
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