For the third consecutive year, the Christian County Library is a recipient of a Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services grant. To help students and job seekers The Library Services and Technology Act grant administered through the Missouri State Library provides Christian County Library patrons with access to over three hundred tests at any internet connection.
The Learning Express database offers inter-active practice for GED, ASVAB, college entrance and other tests ranging from lower elementary to post-graduate level plus many career tests and job skills information.
This year's grant provides $1,630 to match the library's contribution of $2,445 for the annual database subscription. The grant also includes $500 to produce bookmarks and posters to help publicize the database's availability.
Christian County Library's subscription databases, including Learning Express, may be accessed at: http://christiancounty.lib.mo.us.databases.html. The familiar "home" icon indicates databases which may be used at any internet connection. The icon showing a shelf of books are to be used at library computers. Most databases require users to authenticate that the subscription has been paid for them by entering their library card number.
On March 12, 2005, the Friends of the Library agreed to fund $6,330.99 in special projects for the Christian County Library. The all-volunteer group collects and sorts through books and other materials donated by the public and then resells them in sales held each April and October. The proceeds are then donated to the library for the purchase of new books and for special projects. Recent sales have netted an average of $2,500 per week-long sale.
Two new library signs will be erected with Friend of the Library funds. A free-standing sign between the library's two public parking lots will allow drivers on Riverside Road and Fourth Avenue to see the library's name, website address and telephone number. Individual letters will spell out the word LIBRARY in 18" letters above the entrance.
Courier bags in three sizes, imprinted with the library's name, were ordered for use in delivering materials to the community pick-up locations at Clever City Hall, Nixa Community Center and Chadwick School Library. The sturdy, durable, brightly colored Cordura bags will be checked out along with the materials sent in them, and must be returned to the library after each use.
The Friends of the Library contributed $2,000 toward purchases of new audio books on CD. This is especially appreciated since the volume of titles it allows the library to purchase means a larger discount.
For annual flowers for the library's outdoor seating and picnic area, the group gave $100.
Among contributions for the summer reading program, the Friends of the Library are funding charges for performers, end of the summer reading program prizes and staff tee-shirts advertising the "Dragons, Dreams and Daring Deeds" theme of the 2005 program.
Other recent gifts of the Friends of the Library included $500 worth of Children's Books in honor of long-time Secretary of the Friends of the Library Frances Farmer and $500 toward paying the participation fees and bookmarks, stickers and bags to hand out at the Ozark Business Expo March 19 and Nixpo April 2.
The next sale at which Friends of the Christian County Library will raise funds to pay for other items not in the library's budget will begin with Friends' preview night April 15 from 7 to 9 and continue during library hours the week of April 16 through April 23. Gift books may be brought to the library and memberships obtained during library hours year around.
New places to pick up and return library materials! New times to visit the library! Two improvements in Christian County Library services are coming soon. Both are affordable ways of providing more convenient access to library services until more complete services are possible.
Thanks to the cooperation and help of the Clever City Hall, the Nixa Community Center and the Chadwick School, three new locations will soon be available to pick up items requested from the library. Whether books and other materials were delivered to these locations or checked out from the library delivery van or the library building in Ozark, any Christian County Library materials may be returned at the nearest book drop outside these three facilities.
In Nixa, the book return which has been for a couple of years in front of the Nixa High School has beeen moved to near the Nixa Community Center. The library will order new book returns to place in front of Clever City Hall and Chadwick School. The library thanks the Nixa School District and these three locations for providing a location to make returning library materials more convenient for residents.
To take advantage of the pick-up service, residents should obtain a library card. With that, requests may be placed on-line from the library's catalog at coolcat.org, choosing the Christian County Library's catalog. Library staff will pull requests, package them with a sheet showing the name of the person making the request, and deliver them to the pick-up site. Materials may then be picked up during public hours at the school and during regularly-scheduled open hours at the Nixa Community Center and the Clever City Hall. Staff there will request library card and/or photo identification before handing over the materials. The sheet will be placed in a folder for library staff to check out the requests. All requests, renewals, fees and questions should be directed to the library. All materials should be placed in the book return, not taken back into the building where it was picked up. The partners in the new service will strictly view identification and hand over the materials.
Beginning with the new year, library hours will change. Currently, the library is open until 8 p.m. on Monday and Thursday nights, closing at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The new schedule will be 8:30 to 8:00 Monday through Thursday; and 8:30 to 5:00 Friday and Saturday. This should both give added access to those people whose work day ends after four and relieve the confusion in remembering which nights the library is open.
The changes are in response to public comment on the survey conducted last summer. We hope and believe they will improve public access to library services.