GOLIAD – Library staff are taking opening to the public slow to ensure patrons don’t get sick.

And it’s only locals who are being let inside the door — a process that also requires the person to wear a mask.

“We are open to patrons only to come in and get a book or a movie,” said Claudine Janota, county librarian. “We are going to take it slow.

“We have a lot of older patrons who come in.”

Online access is also being restricted to outside the library.

“We would often have people come in and use our Wi-Fi all day,” she said. But they are boosting the signal so that those who wish can be outside the library and use it.

All computer use for now is not permitted inside the building. “We are in the future going to open up one of our computers,” she said.

She is also limiting access inside to only one member per family member at a time. 

For patrons like Wanda Cornish, having the library open again is a blessing.

“I like reading murder mysteries,” she said perusing the books inside and laughing to herself as she continued. “My husband said he worries when I read so many of these books.”

The book cart remains in front of the library for those wanting to pick up a read without having to go inside — a popular service for the library.

“I guess people feel more comfortable out there,” she said. 

Books checked back into the library are all wiped and cleaned before being put back on the shelf or on the cart.

“We are still wiping down all the books,” Janota said. “If we had 300-400 books everyday to shelve, I don’t think we could do it.”

The precautions against COVID-19 are also forcing the library to cancel its summer programs.

“I hate that we have to cancel our summer kids’ programs,” she said. “But I don’t see that as a good idea.

“We will typically have 20 to 50 people come out for our movie showings and anywhere from 25 to 100 kids for our Thursday programs.”

None of the supplies are going to waste, though.

“We are going to hold onto everything until next summer,” she said. 

Jason Collins is the editor at the Goliad Advance-Guard and can be reached at 361-343-5221, or at editor@mySouTex.com.

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