Name and title: Sarah Scheinman, Operations Manager
Name and title: Pat Hasenfus, Branch Manager
Library name: Summit County Libraries
How many libraries are in your system? 3
Staff size: 14 How Many MLS?: 3
Community size: 31,000
Collection size: 137,083
Is there a new technology that you are excited about using at the library?
Sarah: We are aware that for libraries to remain relevant for teens, technology is the way to get them interested. We have had tremendous success in online gaming, virtual reality headsets and our girls who code program launched last year was also very popular. We even expanded Girls who Code to just Code Club as we had so many boys who also wanted to join. We enjoy empowering them to take those natural technology skills children are developing at such a young age to the next level. We also recognize that the internet requires us to raise awareness of the hazards and we are looking at doing a digital citizenship program series for children and parents this fall.
Pat: We will be rolling out self-check in the near future. While it is not new, it will empower patrons and free up limited staff time. That said, we are the only human contact some of our patrons have on a daily basis, and we always want to keep that contact and community connection.
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What are you most proud of about your library?
Sarah: The amount of innovative programming we do that is both creative, cultural and digitally oriented. We are a special community and there is so much going on already, so we collaborate with a range of local organizations to enhance our offerings, from the National Repertory Orchestra, Breck Create, High county Conservation, Summit School District and many more to cross market and reach more locals and visitors of all ages.
Pat: At a time when so many communities are cutting hours or consolidating branches, our community banded together to re-purpose a historical building to offer more room, more staff and more services. It is especially gratifying that the town, county and a fundraising team were able to work together to realize that vision.
What was your most popular event for teens or adults?
Sarah: Summer Reading is our most popular for all ages. Whether it’s a magician for the preschools, blue grass music on the deck, Harry Potter Trivia at our local bar or teens having cupcake decorating competitions, everyone loves to participate! In addition to all the fun programming, our focus is really to enhance literacy to prevent summer slide so everything we can do to partner with the schools and provide that opportunity for reading over the summer.
Pat: Our partnerships with the Breckenridge Heritage Alliance to offer a summer historical series, as well as a local bluegrass band and monthly yoga classes have been adult favorites. Tapping into the local talents can be hugely rewarding.
How do you think being located in a “tourist town” affects the services that you offer?
Sarah: We have to be conscious about our community and that we are serving both visitors and locals. They may want to print a boarding pass or pick up a free paperback for their vacation while our locals may be spending time looking for a job or planning a vacation. We try to serve all our various populations as best we can and offering free programming, guests cards and reciprocal library cards is one of the ways we do that.
Pat: Our collection is heavy on local history, travel and children’s books to fill that need for our guests. Because it is a constantly rotating user group, we spend of great deal of time training patrons on use of computers, printers, online databases and downloadables. We also tailor our programming to appeal to both locals and tourists.
What is the biggest challenge facing your library?
Sarah: Keeping up with change, we want to make sure that the people using our facilities are engaged and continue to visit us even with all the electronic resources we offer. The library does provide 24/7 access these days, but we also work hard to be a community center where people can feel welcome and come to learn and enjoy our space.
Pat: Given the soaring costs of housing in a resort community, keeping fully staffed on a limited budget does present a challenge. Fortunately, it is the best job in the world!