Northern Grampians Libraries in St Arnaud and Stawell are pleased to welcome patrons back into the library branches.
Thanks to the continued easing of COVID-19 restrictions, patrons can visit the library branches with activities and programs starting to gradually return.
There is a density limit in each library branch and staff are running necessary group meetings in separate meeting rooms to avoid the need to shut the doors in order to host meetings.
In St Arnaud, the community meeting room has an absolute maximum of 10 with a very different layout than you may be used to in order to adhere to the strict 1.5m distance rules.
At Stawell, the community meeting room is available any day except for Wednesdays from 1.30pm to 4.30pm with a maximum capacity of five people. There is also a courtyard area for community use as well as an open area at the back of the library.
Community members are encouraged to call ahead to library staff to book a meeting room or other library service or facility to ensure all density and patron limit requirements are adhered to.
Storytime is also back for the younger members of our shire with stories at St Arnaud on the first and third Wednesdays of the month at 10.30am and the same time each week at Stawell on Thursdays and Fridays.
The next storytime theme is part of the Northern Grampians Shire Council 16 days of Activism Against GenderBased Violence program and the story and craft will be based around respect and kindness. Please book in advance as numbers are limited to 10 including children and parents in St Arnaud and 20 in Stawell.
The libraries also have a cleaning regime in place to keep our communities as safe as possible. Books are quarantined, the counter and return chute regularly cleaned throughout the day, computer keyboards are cleaned between use, and sanitiser is available.
Masks are mandatory in the library at this time in line with State Government regulations and requirements.
The change from Wimmera Regional Libraries to Northern Grampians Libraries is running smoothly with 78 new books added to the St Arnaud collection and 168 in Stawell in November alone.
To make room for all these new books we currently have a huge amount of old stock for sale inside the library and for free outside the St Arnaud library. Come down and have a look to see if anything interests you. Stawell residents have made use of taking weeded stock while the library was closed to the public, with almost all items going to good homes during the lockdown period.
The Call, Click and Collect program implemented at both library branches during the COVID lockdown has been very popular and is still available for vulnerable groups who are unable to attend in person at the libraries.
The St Arnaud Library is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 1.30pm to 5.30pm, Thursday from 10am to 1pm and 2.30pm to 5.30pm and Saturdays from 9.30am to 12pm.
The Stawell Library is open Tuesdays to Fridays from 10am to 5.30pm, Saturdays from 10am to 12pm and Sundays from 2pm to 5pm.