masked person using a laptop at a library

Session on Reopening at the June Library 2.0 Conference

We have a great lineup of presenters at the free online Library 2.0 Small, Rural, and Independent Libraries Conference on Wednesday, June 17, from 12 to 3 p.m. Pacific time. One can't-miss session will be Library Reopening Plans, presented by Mary Soucie, State Librarian for North Dakota State Library. To cite the recent popular American Libraries magazine article — it's all about Reopening: Not "When?" but "How?"

drawing of man with an armful of books and woman reading a book in a comfortable chair in a library

About Mary Soucie

Mary Soucie

Mary has been a librarian for 26 years and has been the North Dakota State Librarian for six of those years. Her main job is to advocate for libraries with local, state, and national governments. She also serves as director of the state library, which has a large circulating collection including best sellers, the largest large print collection in the state, and a large talking book collection.

Her library passions include mentoring colleagues at all levels and from all types of libraries and connecting people. She has done a number of trainings in active shooter drills and also on managing disruptive patrons and safety policies and procedures. She is co-chair of the ARSL Governance Committee, where she is collecting shared phased reopening plans from different libraries across the country.

What Her Presentation Will Cover

Of course Mary's Library 2.0 presentation on Wednesday will cover the ways that different libraries are and will be reopening based on what librarians have shared in the ARSL and the Colorado Library Consortium CLiC communities. She plans to talk about some of the nitty-gritty details of how to open back up.

  • The role of curbside services that she believes libraries will probably continue
  • Contactless materials delivery like putting items put in the trunk when patrons arrive curbside
  • The different kinds of sneeze guards, including very low-cost ones for small libraries with small budgets
  • Where to find scarce materials like Plexiglas and sanitizing materials that are useful, like wipes
  • Some other techniques libraries will use for sanitizing library materials
  • Plans for requiring vs recommending the use of masks for patrons
  • New useful library of things offerings like take-and-make craft kits
  • Some of the new partnerships that are emerging with fire departments, hospitals, health departments, and school lunch programs
  • Long-term planning for virtual programs (like virtual summer reading programs), STEM, and public performances beyond live story time
  • The need for workforce development help post-COVID for the long economic recovery

How to Catch Mary's Session

We hope you'll join us to find out about the different ways that libraries are phasing in services. Mary believes that the new programming that we are developing for the pandemic will increase the value of libraries much more to the public for years to come. Register for Mary's session and the rest of the free Library 2.0 online mini-conference here.