The Lone Cone Library reopened its doors on Monday, but with new hours and regulations to keep the community safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are pleased to be able to welcome patrons back into the library building,” director Carrie Andrew said. “We have missed you. Although our current hours are somewhat limited, we hope to expand in coming weeks as we get a handle on new procedures. Thank you for your patience during these strange times.”

The library’s shortened hours are now 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. The hour of 11 a.m. to noon will be reserved for the most vulnerable populations only, including the elderly or immuno-compromised.

Curbside service of library materials will still be available for those who would prefer that method. Curbside materials requests will be filled and available for pickup by 11 a.m. on the next business day. 

“We will still have curbside services available to you for pick up, should you choose not to wear a mask or if you feel uncomfortable coming into the building,” Andrew said.

Additionally, the library will continue doing its free lunch pickup program for the kids, and that continues until the week before school starts. Andrew said families that want the free lunch need to register in advance online to ensure there is enough food for all participating.

As far as the new COVID-19 regulations go, masks are required inside the library. If patrons do not have a mask with them, they are not permitted to enter the building. The library will have some masks available to provide to patrons at the entryway, if folks do not have one. All library visitors must sanitize their hands upon entry. 

Inside, the staff will have four adult computers available, and two teen computers, with a limit of 45-minute sessions per patron. When patrons are done using a computer, they are asked to flip the sign over on the keyboard to show that it needs to be sanitized. Routine cleaning will take place to keep library guests safe.

Also, patrons can still reserve the south meeting room for events at the discretion of the staff, dependent on group size.

During this time, for social distancing purposes, no more than one family unit at a time is allowed in the children's area. 

Patrons are still permitted to use the bottle-filler to refill their personal water containers, but no food or other drinks are allowed inside the library building. At the same time, no guests are permitted to remove their mask at any time to drink from a water bottle. 

All library patrons will be required to have their own library cards and must only use the self-check machine.

“Our staff will not be checking out any items to patrons at this time,” Andrew said. “If you have lost your card, our staff can issue a new one, but identification verification is required, as well as a valid mailing address.”

The first replacement library card is free, and any replacement after that will be $5.

Book-a-Librarian appointments are available on a case-by-case basis using social distancing best practices to support patrons in getting their hands on the materials they need.