Home Back Issues May 2010 Libraries are flooded with visitors

Libraries are flooded with visitors

| Print |  Email
Articles - May 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010

Nonprofits find themselves competing more and more with businesses for customers, and libraries are no exception. However, Oregon’s 130 public libraries are thriving and many are expanding an already loyal customer base.

“We don’t worry about people coming into libraries,” says Jim Scheppke, State Librarian. “A downturn in the economy always turns library use up.”

The Oregon State Library found that checkouts of books and other materials from public libraries increased by 7% in 2009, reaching a new record of 55.8 million checkouts. The Multnomah County Library has the third-highest circulation rates in the country, behind Queens and New York City. Attendance in Crook County public libraries increased about 15% to 20% in the past two years according to Dave Patterson, library director. While some of that is due to the economy, Patterson credits a large portion of the increase to a new way of thinking about library customers.

“We’ve taken a lot of cues from retail,” Patterson says. “We try to have something for everyone.”

These include prominent new material displays to catch customers’ attention. Rural and metropolitan libraries also provide customers with extensive online resources, such as career centers and student resources, and free high-speed Internet, a major benefit for job seekers.

Vailey Oehlke, director of the Multnomah County Library, says libraries utilize technology to remain relevant and resourceful for their communities. Libraries around the state use everything from word-of-mouth to Twitter to inform users of new programs and materials.

Nearly 30 public libraries statewide are a part of the Oregon Digital Library Consortium, a group that pools their resources to purchase digital audio books, eBooks and digital videos. All of the materials are available for patrons of any participating library on the Library 2 Go website. While digital materials are a small percentage of any library’s resources, librarians across the state agree it’s a growing trend.

“We’re really excited that libraries are keeping up with all of the new technology,” says Scheppke.

COLLEEN MORAN
 

More Articles

Oversight? Or gaming the system?

News
Monday, July 14, 2014
AmazonBY VIVIAN MCINERNY | OB BLOGGER

Some people think Amazon’s winking eye logo is starting to look like a hoodwink.


Read more...

Green Endeavor cleans up

News
Wednesday, August 06, 2014
080614 ULnew greenendeavorBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Portland startup Green Endeavor strikes gold, inking a partnership with Underwriters Laboratories, an Illinois-based consulting and certification company with offices in 46 countries.


Read more...

Register for 100 Best Companies survey

News
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
OBM-100-best-logo-2015 150pxwBy Kim Moore | OB Editor

The 2015 survey launched this week. It is open to for-profit private and public companies that have at least 15 full- or part-time employees in Oregon.


Read more...

Managing family assets: The importance of planning ahead

News
Friday, August 22, 2014
Unknown-1BY CLIFF HOCKLEY |  OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

When business intersects with family, a host of  situations can arise. Without a clear vision and careful planning, hard-earned investments can become stressful burdens.


Read more...

OB Video: Oregon MESA

News
Thursday, June 26, 2014

ThumbOregon Business hosts an informal roundtable discussion about the Oregon MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement) program.


Read more...

South Waterfront's revenge

News
Thursday, July 24, 2014
MoodyAveBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Remember the naysayers?  Those who called the South Waterfront aerial tram a boondoggle?  Those who rejoiced at the massive sell off of luxury condos at the John Ross and Atwater Place?


Read more...

Community colleges and sustainability

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, July 31, 2014
sustainabilityBY MARY SPILDE | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

Faced with the aftermath of the “great recession,” increasing concern about the environment and dwindling family wage jobs, we have some very important choices to make about our future.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS