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Last year, a tiny virus made it abundantly clear just how connected we really are. Leave it to a pandemic to both isolate and bring a community together. Eliot may be small, but it is full of big-hearted people doing what they can for one another in such challenging times.

Though our normal patterns of community life were completely upended, this experience has forced us to create new ways of being in community with one another. The library is no different. We were forced to temporarily close our doors to the public from March through May, but were able to reopen for curbside pick-up appointments at the beginning of June. Shortly after, we opened our doors to the public with safety protocols in place (masks, hand sanitizer, and a limited number of people). Our generous community even raised the funds for a book sterilizing machine in two days flat! The last few months have been an exploration in how to continue serving the families of this town in new and creative ways.

Miss Maureen put her film school degree to good use, turning out high-quality and engaging recorded storytimes for the preschool crowd each week for the past 8 months. There are currently 28 episodes up on the Kent Room WFL YouTube channel, each around 45 minutes long. Miss Laurel’s 4-year old daughter LOVES Miss Maureen’s storytimes and knows a ridiculous amount of sign language as a result.

Though indoor storytimes are still on hiatus,  outdoor storytimes are still going strong with Miss Laurel. Families spread out on the lawn (or snow), bundled up in their winter gear, for what has become a precious opportunity to see friends in person and maintain some sense of normalcy. We may be wearing masks and respecting each other’s space, but we’re still together, learning and laughing and show-and-telling. Since many families have been home together, this has also become a beautiful intergenerational space, with siblings of various ages and grandparents often present. Families always leave with a craft to complete at home.

The library is also open for families to come in without an appointment to check out books and pick up a craft. Just ask Miss Eliza – she’ll be happy to help!

It has been an absolute pleasure serving the families of this town over the last few months and we look forward to meeting more of you. Please know that we welcome any and all suggestions for family programming. Check out the ‘Events’ page to find out what is going on each week. Subscribe to kentroom@williamfogglibrary.org to receive a weekly Kent Room schedule, zoom links, and to be notified of any last minute changes.

Love,

Your friendly local librarians