Nice travel day today; the thunderstorms blew themselves out last night. A bus to downtown Minneapolis, light rail to the Mall of America, a free ride on the brand-new Red Line, a "bus rapid transit" route from MOA to Apple Valley. Visited the library, had lunch at Culver's, reversed the transit segments to get home.
OK, now for the library. This is a re-visit. The first thing I noticed was a sign on the door: This Facility is Under Surveillance." This interested me because last weekend I was discussing with my boss whether the library where I work adequately notifies people that video cameras are in use. And that discussion was based on a sign at an Anoka library.
Just beyond the lobby is a display of books called "Lucky U" books. These are similar to rental books in Ramsey County and Bestseller Express in Hennepin. But here (and I assume throughout Dakota County) these bestsellers go out for just one week, no renewal, and it didn't appear that there is a rental fee. Just beyond this is a separate room full of media, DVDs, CDs, and recorded books. A large alcove houses copiers, printers, a change machine, and a table for collating and whatever. The county law library is also here; there's a desk for a Law Librarian, but it was not staffed on this Saturday afternoon.
Continuing straight ahead I found the world language collection with Spanish books for kids and adults, Vietnamese and Russian books for adults only (I think) and an adult literacy section for those learning English.
Along the south side is a broad curved window wall with nine comfortable-looking chairs near the large-print books, periodicals, and newspapers. An interesting idea is that the current, 2013, periodicals are on slanting shelves, the kind where past issues are placed beneath/behind the latest), and older periodicals are in open bins classified by topic.
The teen area is quite large, with fiction, non-fiction, and graphic novels. There are two "diner booth" seating areas, with a prominent sign reminding users that there is to be No Food, No Drink. The non-fiction collection includes "Know Your Money Resources for Teens and Adults." It strikes me as a good idea to emphasize this topic, and I recall seeing the same sort of display in DCL branches last summer.
The teen area didn't seem to have its own computers, but there is a computer lab with 12 computers, and about two dozen more throughout the adult area. There are also at least five one-person study rooms.
The picture book bins-and-shelves are standard, but I really liked the bold green letter labels. A separate program area has three semi-circular carpeted risers, and a sign, "Please remember that this is a reading area, not a playing area." Signs on the wall remind parents that they enhance literacy for their children when they Read, Sing, Write, Talk, and Play, with examples of how each type of activity contributes to literacy.
There are two catalog computers and six Internet computers for kids. A space-themed quilt and one that appears to have Dakota County scenes, plus a smaller quilt and some fabric banners, enliven the walls.
The Bookawocky reading program is in full swing. I missed the binder in the kids' area, but on the librarian's desk I saw a bulging binder of teen book reviews. I had a nice chat with several staff before I left.
For more information, go to http://www.co.dakota.mn.us/libraries/HoursLocations/Galaxie/Pages/default.aspx or look for the library on FaceBook.
6/22/2013, bus, train, bus rapid transit, walking