Des Moines Public Library More Than Just Books

DES MOINES, Iowa — The Des Moines Public Library system will turn 150 next year and staff has worked hard to hide its age.

“That is part of being a library, we have to keep up with what’s new,” said Sue Woody, community outreach manager for the Des Moines Public Library. “We have to help people navigate through the new technologies.”

Those technologies for the library are always changing and they have been ahead of the curve most of the time. Over the last ten years, the library has watched the rise and plateau of e-books but the most popular item for visitors has always been information.
“Every person who comes in the door is unique and they all have their own need,” said Woody. “One is working on genealogy project. Kids are looking for homework help. We have to be able to meet all their needs.”

One of the biggest misconceptions about the library is that books are becoming obsolete.

“Teens are reading hard copy books more than ever,” Greg Heid, Director. “We had a focus group come and meet with teens. They gathered that while teens are always online they love to decompress by ‘kicking back and hanging with a book.’ We saw that trend before but it was nice to see it be verbalized.”

Woody said there is a lot of great reading right now for teens. Teen fiction is one of their biggest rentals.

“They need a safe place to go to between school and home,” said Woody, and she hopes that the library will become that haven. “Between all of our locations there is something going on between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. targeted towards them.”

Heid said he is very happy that teens are engaging more with the library. He said that in the summer time they comprise over half of the total volunteers.

“I’d rather have a teen here interacting with other teens than outside on the streets,” said Heid.

Here is a complete list of programs they offer.

Fast Facts:

  • People used the services of the Des Moines Public Library 2,674,409 times in 2015.
  • Library card holders checked out of 1.3 million items in FY15.
  • Last year the Library Web Site was visited over 1,256,015 times in 2015.
  • The Des Moines Public Library staff answered 323,766 informational questions in 2015.
  • 750,505 computer sessions (both in-house and via our wireless) in 2015.
  • 75,991 people attended more than 3,000 library programs in 2015.
  • 176,585 of the 204,000 citizens of Des Moines own and actively use their library card
  • The library opened a new branch in 2014–  they launched our Virtual Library!  They have 7 library outlets that the public can visit at the DMPL!Referência

    Texto original retirado do site WhoTV.

    NGUYEN, Josh. Des Moines Public Library More Than Just Books. WhoTV: 13 out. 2015. Disponível em: <;. Acesso em: 14 out. 2015.

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