Curbside Services @ NPL

NPL to offer pickup services beginning May 18.

Effective Monday, May 18, NPL will offer curbside pickup services of physical library materials following allowances from the Governor’s office and the Vermont Department of Libraries. The library staff will make books, DVDs, audiobooks, and magazines available for pickup.

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays between the hours of noon and 4:00 p.m., NPL and OneCard library cardholders will be able to pick up items they place on hold in the library’s foyer entrance (a future outside location will be announced as  outdoor weather improves.) 

We ask patrons to place their hold requests using the library’s online catalog by 10 a.m. the day they would like to pick the material up. If you have not yet set up your online account, we can offer assistance and explain how to place holds over the phone. We will take hold requests by email and phone to the extent possible, but encourage patrons to use the online catalog for optimum efficiency. 

Librarians will pull materials from shelves during the mornings of Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Please know that the library will be limiting their staffing, so we ask patrons to be patient with us during this time. When your hold is ready you will receive a call or email that your item is ready for pickup. 

Email notifications through the library’s automated system will continue to be sent when an item is available for pickup. During this period, we request that these notifications be kindly disregarded. You will receive a call or email from a librarian when your materials are ready.  

For more of the nitty-gritty, please see our frequently asked questions below. We can of course answer any of your questions directly. 


How do I know if I have an online account?

Please give us a call! Your username is your library barcode number and the password is of your own choosing. If you have not set up a password, or have forgotten it, we can walk you through that. An online account also gives you access to our digital material, including AcornTV and RBDigital.

How can I renew my materials now that you are closed?

Renewals can be made via your online account! In February, NPL expanded access to allow for a second renewal on most items. We are a fine-free library. 

You can also request a renewal by emailing the circulation desk or calling the library during staffed hours.  

When will a librarian be at the library to answer my calls and emails and help me place holds on materials ? 

At this time the library will be staffed during the hours of 9:30 – 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday, to help set up online accounts, assist with e-Audio and e-Books, answer reference questions,  make book recommendations, and help you place holds on physical materials. 

Staff will only be making physical materials available for pick up on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays during 12:00 – 4:00 pm and will be using Tuesdays and Thursdays to attend to other library business at this time. 

Will you continue to offer ILL services? 

At this time we are temporarily pausing interlibrary loan services. Many of our lending libraries during these weeks of social distancing will be operating with limited staff or closed libraries and will face difficulties in fulfilling requests. Our courier delivery services have been suspended, posing additional challenges for ILL at this time. We hope to further updates in June. 

I am someone who likes to browse the library’s shelves for a book. How can you help? 

We continue to offer reader’s advisory and book recommendations by phone or email during our open hours! We would be happy to place our suggestions on hold for pick up after hearing more about what kind of book you are looking for. 

How do I return material to the library?

Please only return items to the library’s dropbox at this time. Please do not leave returned items in the foyer entrance. We will regularly disinfect dropbox surfaces. Staff will isolate returned materials on carts for a period of time before reshelving materials or making them again available for loan.

I’ve returned materials, but they still show on my library card account.

Don’t panic! The library is quarantining all returned materials for 72 hours after retrieving them from the book drop.  This means items will remain on your account for at least 72 hours after you have returned them (and perhaps longer if they are returned on Thursdays/Fridays.)

What should I do if accessing this service is a hardship or not feasible?

If you have mobility issues, you are an essential employee, or have any other difficulties accessing curbside service as described, please call or email us to discuss accommodations.

What are you doing to protect the safety of patrons and library staff?

The contactless curbside pickup model we are using provides maximum social distancing for the safety of our patrons and our staff. All physical materials are quarantined for 72 hours, per CDC guidelines, before being checked in (or checked back out.)

Library staff wash their hands before and after handling materials and are wearing masks. Patrons and staff should respect the need for physical distancing and not approach one another.  This may feel uncomfortable, but is necessary to provide a safe, contactless pickup service. If you notice someone picking up, please remain in your vehicle until the previous patron has departed.

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