Library services were disrupted intermittently on Monday and Tuesday due to an Internet outage at the Municipal Center that affected department phones, Wi-Fi and use of our circulation and cataloging system. Thanks to all for their patience until it was resolved on Tuesday afternoon.
Beth was delighted to receive a citation from the Massachusetts Senate commending the Grafton Public Library on their Library construction project and Grand reopening!
Beth reviewed COVID protocols with staff, ordered office supplies, reviewed a list of outstanding out-of-scope projects for Capital Campaign to consider funding, worked on a non-fiction book order, reviewed the FY23 budget request, and covered multiple service desks during staff leave. She fielded questions to clarify the materials selection policy and set up an appointment to meet with a donor from Willard House to install a Willard Clock in the Historic Reading Room.
Beth met virtually with Trustee Chair Aaron Vandesteen to discuss moving all programming to a virtual or take-home DIY model, and suspending meeting room use, effective January 3 2022, due to the increasing COVID-19 case numbers; all in-person programming for children ages 0-5 has been canceled and an update will be issued on the Library website by end of the week.
Congratulations to Sandhya Shenoy, who is an authorized Notary Public and has expanded the Library’s capacity to offer notarization. Notary service is available by appointment only; please call 508-839-4649.
Congratulations to Marilyn Wilcox, who achieved Para librarian level II and will be honored at the MA Library Association Conference this spring! This certification is a mark of professional development for library staff without a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science.
The Children’s Room was steady in traffic all week, teen services was quieter. Cyndi spent the majority of time welcoming patrons to the children’s room and giving the layout of the room (aka – tours!); teaching how to use the self-check and shelving books. Stacie updated the Holiday decorations in the Children’s Room and did a room refresh to keep everything with a winter theme. She created a fun Snow Globe Zoo with the animals all having names of alliteration to match their species. The patrons can just gaze at the zoo animals as they browse in the children’s room. I also updated all the coloring sheets and end caps for winter as well.
Cyndi and Jen worked on assembling 60+ tinker bags, planning programs for January, and manned the desk during a very busy school vacation week. Jen worked on finishing the newsletter, and updating the Library calendar. Kristin worked on assisting patrons, shelving books, gathering books for hold requests, preparing displays and bookmarks for upcoming January Bookworms Book Clubs for grades K-5 and creating slides to be included in upcoming Literacy Family Nights for SGES and NGES families.
We renewed our Wowbrary subscription! Wowbrary is a new book newsletter that arrives weekly via email and links to books the Library own. Any titles purchased through Wowbrary net a discount for our annual subscription fee. Sign up at https://www.wowbrary.org/.
Borrower services staff continued to perform circulation duties, provide orientation to visitors to the Library, train and supervise volunteers and more. In the last week, we circulated 2,313 items in the last week, and issued 13 new library cards.
The Board of Library Trustees approved a $10,000 purchase from State Aid that will allow books from other libraries to sort more efficiently into bins, and will also allow borrowers to confirm the titles returned were accepted through the automated materials handler. Thanks to the Borrower Services staff for their advocacy and hearing patron complaints about the issue and assisting with the solution!
Heidi’s appearance on Be Our Guest is online on Upton Community Television at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9PvYP82C87M
As a reminder the Library will be closed in observance of New Year’s on December 31st and January 1st. No items are due but materials may be returned 24/7 in the automated book drop.
We’ve compiled a list of resources for mental health support, safety and domestic violence and abuse. Call or text these organizations for support. They are all free and confidential, and most are available to you 24/7. If you are in immediate danger, please call 911.
Beth worked on many details for the Ribbon Cutting and Dedication scheduled for Friday December 17 at 11am. Many thanks to Parks & Cemetaries, DPW, and Custodial for assisting in getting the building ready for it’s official dedication.
She attended a policy committee meeting, a Friends meeting, a Trustee’s meeting, a construction meeting, and a staff meeting. She met with and directed many vendors this week: Evergreen Environments, LLC came to install another green roof, over the vestibule, thanks to a generous donor. Archetype Signworks installed the exterior Library sign, our street number, and our Dedication Plaque. Go2Blu was on site to install panic buttons and train staff. Marketspark came to connect our fax lines. DMH Electrical came to quote additional outlets. IT returned and got our gates software installed.
Beth and Sarah met with Cori from Tucker Interiors to go over shelving needs for the Children’s Room, to provide a prioritized list to the Capital Campaign. Beth also unpacked and directed shelving of the historical collection, finished unpacking boxes in her office and filing items from the move five months ago (finally!), drafted FY23 capital requests, drafted a FY23 library budget, and ordered software for the Library.
In addition to staffing public service desks, the Borrower Services staff helped prep for the Ribbon Cutting. Susan also ordered fiction and e-content, interfaced with Musica Antiqua, who will be playing early music at the Ribbon Cutting ceremony, delivered 7 items to 4 Homebound patrons, processed volunteer applications, ran the BookWagon program at Crescent Manor, ran reports on items long in transit, and marked missing, which our Page searched for.
Allie also created signage for the New Material and Large Print Room, and worked with Beth on displaying the Mind, Body, Spirit boards from our summer Community Art Project. Sandhya updated several procedures in the procedure manual to reflect changes in the new building
Jane worked on reformatting the NYT Bestseller lists to fit into our new wall mount sign holders and made labels for the staff mailboxes.
Sarah, Jen, and Cyndi tidied all children’s room spaces in preparation for the upcoming ribbon cutting ceremony and collaborated on upcoming afterschool and weekend programming. Sarah met with Allison to begin planning tween programming for January, February, and March, presented 2 live zoom sessions of preschool outreach to SGES, shepherded a session of Young Scientists and managed registration and patron communication, contacted AWE to rectify a support issue with stats, began planning for the winter sessions of Preschool Storytime and Toddler Time, communicated with patrons both over the phone and in person, managed the CR collection, and cover meal breaks in YA.
Jen worked on the January CR newsletter, assisted patrons, planned for the upcoming session of Library Babies, updated Event Keeper and social media, helped to manage CR volunteers, and assisted patrons. Cyndi continues to manage the CR Library of Things, made curtains for the Children’s Workroom and programming space, helped to manage CR volunteers, and assisted patrons. Mare contacted volunteers to assign work shifts and followed up as needed, shelved, and assisted patrons. Stacie created take home packets for children and assisted patrons. Kristin has been contacting the schools, created a google form for library tours, planned book clubs, and assisted patrons.
Allison planned winter break programs for teens and tweens, and worked on Beanstack Challenges – creating two new, custom challenges (one for Popsugar Reads and one for Novelist Reads) as well as added some pre-done options for the winter.
Heidi ran book group discussions. Kate attended a round table on Envisionware, a software we are considering for PC print and reservations management. Eileen straightened out our National Grid account and learned where the meter is located.
Recent updates make Libby more accessible for all readers, including users with a diverse range of visual, motor, and cognitive needs.
Many Libby updates throughout 2021 have been focused on improving Libby’s screen reader experience. OverDrive is partnering with Fable—an accessibility platform powered by people with disabilities—to interview blind and low vision users directly and hear their feedback on Libby’s user experience. Based on the feedback we’ve received so far and informed by industry standards, like the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), we’ve made several improvements, including:
Screen reader support: Low-vision and blind users can use screen readers to browse, borrow, read ebooks and magazines, and listen to audiobooks in Libby. Currently, Libby is tested with screen readers on the native mobile apps for iOS and Android, with plans to expand testing to desktop screen readers like NVDA and JAWS in the future.
Read From Here: When using a screen reader, low-vision and blind users can enter “Read From Here” mode to have the text of an ebook or magazine read aloud.
Navigation Bar labels: There’s an option in the in-app menu to add labels beneath each of the navigation bar icons. Note: This setting is currently only available in the English language.
Adjustable text size: Libby uses the text size setting of the user’s device and scales the text in the app accordingly. Users can increase the text size in ebooks manually.
Adjustable playback speed for audiobooks: Users can choose from 48 speed settings to find the speed that best suits their needs.
Keyboard shortcuts: Shortcuts in Libby’s ebook reader and audiobook player supplement the keyboard navigation.
Lighting options: Libby uses the device’s built-in lighting setting and displays the app in light or dark mode accordingly. Users can also choose a lighting option (light, dark, or sepia) in the ebook reader manually.
Additional accessibility updates coming in early January 2022:
Screen reader and voice control improvements: We are refining the labels and descriptions of all interactive elements, making it easier for users of assistive technologies to understand and interact with the app.
Keyboard focus indicators: We are making improvements to help users navigate Libby with a keyboard or any other assistive technology that does not have a pointing device, like a mouse or touch controls.
New accessibility features (under Settings > Accessibility Features):
Reduce Color Variation: By default, Libby adapts to the colors of book covers and the user’s active library. A new toggle will allow users to reduce such adaptive changes, favoring neutral colors with good contrast.
Reduce Text Variation: The app uses a variety of font styles to convey meaning, such as italics for important actions. Users will be able to adjust this setting to simplify text styles.
Reduce Motion: This setting will reduce most of the transitional motion in the interface. Users can also set this preference in their operating system or browser preferences, and Libby will apply it automatically.
Reduce Haptics: On devices that support subtle vibrations (called haptics), Libby uses these to provide feedback on certain touch interactions. Users can either turn it off at the operating system level or in the new “Accessibility Features” menu.
Orientation Locking: By default, Libby uses a “smart orientation” setting that chooses the device orientation that best suits the content. WCAG guidelines recommend that users should be able to override the default orientation of the app, which will be adjustable in the “Accessibility Features” menu.
Full screen menus: The in-app menu will no longer open from the side of the app. Instead, it will open full screen. This makes keyboard and screen reader navigation more consistent and helps all users concentrate on the task they are trying to perform in the menu.
Updated menu icon: The in-app menu button (currently Libby icon ) will be changed to a familiar icon, providing a more intuitive navigation experience for all users.
The Library welcomed over 850 visitors during Grafton Celebrates the Holidays on Sunday December 5. The LEGO library model was a big hit and we ran out of the keychain craft by 3pm.
This week as of Friday morning, the library circulated 2,871 items, of which 785 were automatic renewals. Patrons placed 385 holds, and we fulfilled 403; 524 items went out in delivery and 501 items came in. We added 32 new borrowers, and 39 new items, of which 32 were unique – no one else in system owns it! The most requested title was Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty.
This week, Library Director Beth Gallaway worked on the FY23 budget and capital requests; submitted an FY23 Action Plan to the MA Board of Library Commissioners; updated policies; worked on agenda, minutes and reports for next week’s Board of Library Trustees meeting; met with IT; worked on MPLCP reports, reviewed the Donor wall proof, placed ordered for requested software and peripherals (webcam, speakers, mic) that did not come standard with new library computers; dealt with a social media issue; and met with the Salary and Classification consultants.
She ran a staff meeting and attended Library Planning and Building Committee meeting, where a clock for the Large Print Reading Room was approved. Staff got a reminder about not coming to work sick, and completing daily health self-disclosures, and reviewed protocol for close contacts with Grafton Board of Health (volunteers or staff can come to work IF fully vaccinated and IF symptom free).
Beth attended the Friends of the Library meeting, where the Spring Egg Hunt was scheduled for Saturday April 9, 2023. Thanks to all who supported the Friends many fundraising items for sale during GCTH!
Beth scheduled installation of a second green roof to go over the vestibule at the parking lot entrance; provided a list of additional signage to Capital Campaign; scheduled installation and training for panic buttons; got a demo for Meeting OWL Pro 360 camera and worked on procurement of 2 for the library to own; discussed delivery and installation of the dedication plaque, and dealt with other Ribbon Cutting details, including incentives, invitations, press release and room bookings.
A technician from Chandler was on site to adjust the timing of the door opener, and an electrician was scheduled to review additional outlet locations. Beth reviewed schematics for the still incomplete sliding doors for the maker space, and arranged for the project manager from DRA to come over the weekend to verify punch list items are complete.
Beth approved and denied Meeting Room requests, recommended 2-person meetings meet in tutor rooms as designed, and planned a Winter/ Holiday Farmers Market with Grafton Farmer’s Market, to be held Wed 12/15 from 12-4pm. Over a dozen vendors will participate. She planned an upcoming Learn to Play Ukulele course with Apple Tree Arts, to start in 2023, and is working with Blackstone Valley Watershed on their annual meeting. She also met with Patti Keller from Grafton High School to discuss G-Term.
She drafted new policies for Group Visits, Vehicle Charging and Privacy and Confidentiality and then met with Town Legal Counsel to review in advance of Board vote, Beth handled an Unattended Child incident, and has made a recommendation to Board of Library Trustees to consider lowering the Unattended Child minimum from age 13 to grade 5 (age 10/11), pending ability to use the Library independently.
Public Wi-Fi continues to be inconsistent throughout the building.
The Town’s custodial crew assisted with building and grounds cleanup, hanging clocks and bulletin boards, GCTH cleanup and salted/sanded walkways in advance of the first snow on Wednesday evening, which was much appreciated.
Eileen kindly helped coordinate gifts for our sponsored family for the Christmas season.
Borrower Services continue to cover the lobby and the adult circulation desk, manage the AMH system, help patrons navigate self-check in, self-check out, room reservations, copier use, finding items on the shelves, answer questions about material, register new borrowers, check out museum passes, manage out of network requests and returns, process delivery daily, place holds, monitor room reservation requests, document questions and comments from the public, and monitor youth behavior in the adult spaces.
Ranjita worked at the Grafton Celebrates the Holidays event here at the library.
This week Allie and Sandhya gave an impromptu tour to the Grafton Police School Liaison officer.
Allie and Susan did remote troubleshooting with Bibliotheca to repair one of our antennae plates (to lock and unlock the RFID tags), and we have a scheduled session to investigate a problem with the sorting machine. Jane worked on the NYT bestseller lists, and handled a lot of the checking in of delivery items.
We’ve gathered a lot of Christmas movies from other libraries, as well as our own, and have them available to borrow.
Sarah and Stacie worked Grafton Celebrates the Holidays this week. Stacie helped patrons in the Children’s Room while Sarah ran the craft in meeting rooms A & B.
Sarah ran preschool and toddler time story time sessions, shepherded the Young Scientists program, completed November stats and narrative, corresponded with patrons, prepped and ran a tween painting program, worked with Allison C and Beth G to revise the Unattended Child Policy, Coordinated with the Friends of the Grafton Public Library regarding Grafton Celebrates the Library, assisted patrons, organized in the children’s program room, and worked on book orders.
Jen continued to work on the January newsletter, updated social media and EventKeeper, ran library babies, put together book displays, assisted patrons, organized in the Children’s program room, and helped to decorate the room.
Cyndi organized in the Children’s Program Room, assisted patrons, worked on the Library of Things for youth, and helped to decorate the Children’s Room with Stacie for a festive seasonal atmosphere. Stacie also put together book displays, and assisted patrons. Mare coordinated with volunteers and assisted patrons.
Kristin assisted patrons, coordinated and communicated with the schools, and prepped for next week’s book clubs.
The Reference Team put together seasonal and themed book displays, including Hot Books for Cold Nights and Pretend To Be A Time Traveler Day (It was December 8, if you missed it, maybe you can go back in time to revisit). Kate, one of our temps, offered to add genre stickers to Romance novels, and Erin offered to package our donation of Seeds so our seed library can debut this spring.
Teen services is working to schedule some tween programming and resume Dungeons and Dragons.
Donna kindly continues to catalog all the strange and interesting items we want to add to the collection, including – coming soon, just in time for winter boredom – puzzles for adults, a bulb planter, and banjoleles.
Library Director Beth Gallaway worked on logistics for the Ribbon Cutting and Dedication, scheduled for December 17, 2021 at 11am, and for Grafton Celebrates the Holidays – the Library will be open on Sunday from 12-4pm with crafts, activities, and Friends fundraisers.
Beth worked with Signet on door and security issues, ordered non-fiction and office supplies, worked on MBLC reports and the FY2023 Action Plan, and met with IT, the construction team, and various staff members. She spoke with middle school principal Roseanne Kurposka regarding tween behavior issues, including theft of library property and disrespect towards staff. Beth ran a staff meeting and assignment on addressing behavior concerns to practice working with the public regarding masks. Beth updated the Library’s Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP), worked on the FY23 budget, reviewed the Draft Group Visits policy, delegated procedures manual updates and other tasks, and did a Koopmans run purchased seasonal decorations for GCTH.
Borrower services staff covered the lobby and the adult circulation desk, managed the AMH system, helped patrons navigate self-check in, self-check out, room reservations, copier use, finding items on the shelves, answered questions about material, registered new borrowers, checked out museum passes, managed materials requests outside the local CW MARS network, finalized a seasonal display, created signage for new fiction and display, reminded people to keep their masks on, processed delivery daily, placed holds, documented questions and comments from the public, and monitored youth behavior in the adult spaces.
We had a volunteer help move the Large Print books from their temporary location to their permanent home in the Large Print/New Material room. Museum passes have been updated with new closures, times and pass/ticket policies. The December Newsletter was completed and sent. Printing & Wi-Fi is working now and there is no charge for printing until the end of the year. Masks are available for sale for $1 at the library. Orders were placed for new Large Print, DVDs, audio books and Overdrive content.
This week Heidi hosted the “Reads Well with Others” Book Group Monday evening to discuss Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery, by Jenny Colgan. She also facilitated
The Inspirational Book Group Tuesday evening to discuss Angles on Earth: inspiring stories of fate, friendship, and the power of connections, by Laura Schroff and Alex Tresniowski.
Heidi answered reference questions, created library cards for people and worked on holiday library displays.
Sarah presented a preschool storytime and toddler time programming, shepherded a Young Scientists virtual program, created a prerecorded storytime for North Grafton Elementary School and gave the viewing link to the teachers, ran two sessions of Button Art programming during the day off for school conferences, purchased solar lights for the walkway to the Children’s Amphitheatre, purchased and installed seasonal lights on the circulation desks for the upcoming GCTH program, communicated with staff about program coverage, and assisted patrons.
Jen worked on the January newsletter, updating EventKeeper and Room Keeper bookings, ran a Library Babies program, assisted patrons, and gave a tour to a local Cub Scouts pack. Cyndi organized the Children’s Library of Things, assisted patrons, notarized documents, decorated for GCTH, and helped with volunteers. Kristin collaborated with the lower elementary schools in an outreach capacity and prepped for her three book club sessions. Mare coordinated with volunteers and assisted patrons. Stacie assisted patrons, created book displays, and continued to acclimate herself to the Children’s Room.
The Grafton Public Library will host a ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony on Friday December 17, 2021 at 11:00am. The general public is invited for speeches, tours, and a goodie bag. Please note masks are required per Town mandate if you join us to celebrate our Library expansion and renovation project!
Our Guest Speaker lineup includes:
Doug Bowman, Library Planning and Building Committee
State Senator Michael Moore
State Representative David Muradian
Karen Traub, Commissioner; Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners
Evan Brassard, Town Administrator
Peter Carlson, Chair; Select Board
Dana Wilson, Capital Campaign
Aaron Vandesteen, Chair; Board of Library Trustees
Beth Gallaway, Library Director
The $16.6 million dollar renovation project, partially funded with a grant from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners, expanded the Library’s 94-year-old, 7,200 square foot building to a nearly 26,000 square foot facility with program space and outdoor patios for adults, children and teens; a divisible community meeting room and private tutor and group study rooms; a climate controlled historical archive; a state of art materials checkout and returns system; and the preservation of the Historic Reading Room and Friends ongoing book sale. Library parking tripled, and 4 electric vehicle charging stations are available. Signage, HVAC, lighting, phones, Wi-Fi, fire suppression, intrusion alarms, security cameras and other systems are up to code, and the building is ADA compliant. The Library is in process of completing a LEED certification and hopes to achieve a Silver rating.
The building was designed by Kenneth Best, principal architect, Drummey Rosane Anderson, Inc. The project was managed by Mark Sullivan, DA Sullivan & Sons, Inc. while Clerk of the Works Andy Deschenes provided oversight and daily reports. The general contractor CTA Construction Managers executed the project. The Capital Campaign brought in significant community donations to implement naming of rooms and spaces, as well as out of scope projects such as landscaping and a green roof. The Library Planning and Building Committee kept the project on budget, the Historic District Commission provided oversight and signoff on various elements, the Building Department kept the permitting process smooth, Planning Board and Conservation Commission aided with land use and transfers, environmental issues and wetlands protection, and the Finance Committee, Select Board, Friends of the Grafton Public Library and Board of Library Trustees provided financial and moral support. This truly was a community effort and we thank everyone for their support and contributions.
No RSVP is required to attend the ribbon-cutting; questions can be directed to Beth Gallaway, Library Director at 508-839-4649 x1836 or email@example.com.