2020 Year in Review

In the best of times, Norwich Public Library plays a critical role in Norwich, connecting patrons to books and other content, to new ideas and experiences, and to one another. I am excited to share stories of how our staff drew on its long history of compassionate service to keep our community connected during this unique and challenging year. 

Please consider making a contribution to our Annual Appeal. Your contribution will make a lasting impact. Thank you, Norwich!

Lucinda Walker, Director

Grappling with New Challenges

Curbside Foyer Pickup

As the state of Vermont gradually opened up, the Library worked to create new procedures that balanced the need to protect our staff and patrons with the goal of allowing access to our collections. We also were able to offer browsing by appointment for a three-month period.

Serving Our Community 

Grab-and-Go Kits 

Throughout the summer, staffers prepared and distributed dozens of takehome crafts, often paired with educational information. These takehome crafts will have foreshadowed forthcoming endeavours for the start of 2021. Stay tuned for more!  

The Haven 

The library spearheaded sock and toiletry collection for The Haven as part of our programming around anti-bullying. We also once again collected cereal as part of 19 Days of Norwich.

Taking Our Stories Online

With support from the Friends of the Library, NPL subscribed to Beanstack, an app-based platform for logging reading, writing book reviews, and participating in community reading challenges. This summer, the #NPLJust20 challenge encouraged folks to engage in new and favorite activities for just 20 minutes a day. Upcoming reading challenges include #BooksLikeUs, a winter challenge that celebrates diverse books.

Online Events Reach New Audiences 

Peeps Diorama Contest 

The 2020 edition of our Peeps Diorama Contest went virtual and tons of creativity was put on display.186 ballots were cast and six winners were announced! 

Art History Social Hours 

We launched a series of short talks on art inspired by the Upper Valley, from Paul Sample to the Cornish Art Colony, that left plenty of time for questions and conversation from people all over. The recordings are available on our recently-launched YouTube channel.

Community Partnerships 

e-Bike Loans and Test Rides 

With help from the Norwich Energy Committee, the library once again hosted e-Bike test rides and loans from a safe distance. We’re thrilled that we helped promote green transportation alternatives and served as a catalyst for an emerging Upper Valley e-Bike coalition.

Circles Project with Norwich Historical Society

We loved being one of the host sites and co-sponsors for the Circle Project! The Norwich Historical is our co-host for programming from Vermont Humanities Council.

Expanded Access and Collections 

NPL Went Fine-Free

The library cleared all outstanding overdue fines in February to eliminate an access barrier and ensure that all our patrons can learn, imagine, and engage equally at, and with, the library. Learn more about why we made this change.

Digital Access to the NYTimes 

With thanks to the Friends of the Library, NPL is able to provide digital access to the NYTimes

Inspiring Joy and Connection


As many trick-or-treating celebrations were cancelled, librarians clad in Witch costumes joined the Town’s Norwitchy Woods Walk where dozens of Norwich residents, young and old, participated in safe trick-or-treating. 

Spotify Playlists  

Follow us on Spotify @norwichpublib to listen to our compiled playlists based on holidays and other events.

Cutting through the Hubbub 

We frequently scour the web for delightful websites and create other themed lists for watching, learning, and creating. 

The 2020 CARES Act permits individuals to deduct $300 in charitable donations for 2020, including taxpayers who do not itemize. Make your tax-deductible gift to Norwich Public Library by mail, during curbside pick-up hours, or at