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At the Library: Soon you can pick up books at the library again

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stack of books

When I was in high school, I was always on the committees responsible for planning assemblies and school dances — and I handled the role with all of the teenage reverence the position demanded.

Now that I’m (ostensibly) an adult, when I think back on the projects, deadlines and teamwork that were part-and-parcel with my time on all of those long-ago committees, I can’t help but to see definite through-lines to my work with the library.

Especially now that Yakima Valley Libraries has completed requirements that allow us to provide contact-free curbside pickup of library materials, I’m seeing that same level of teamwork and collaboration that I loved to be part of as a teenager, as library staff and management pull together to get this new service off the ground.

Many of you are probably already aware that our timeline for offering contact-free holds pickup began this week, but as we draw closer to offering full pickup service, I wanted to share a more detailed overview of what you can expect in the coming days.

Beginning on Saturday, Aug. 22, we will reactivate the option for you to place new requests for library materials, online or by phone.

Then, beginning on Monday, Aug. 24, our online appointment scheduling system will be available for you to select a day and time to pick up your requested materials.

If needed, you can also call your preferred community library and staff will schedule a pickup appointment for you over the phone.

However, before you make an appointment to pick up requested materials, please be sure that your library materials are in “held” status on your library account.

This step is important as it ensures that your items have arrived at your preferred community library and are available for pickup.

A tip about verifying that your holds are ready: If you already receive email and/or text message notifications from the library, we will use one or more of those methods to notify you when holds are ready.

Alternatively, you can also check your account status online or call your community library to confirm that items are ready for pickup.

When you arrive at your preferred library for your pickup appointment, look for the yellow “Contact-Free Holds Pick Up” signs. In order to ensure a fully no-contact pickup, we ask that you remain in your vehicle and call the phone number on the sign. At that point, library staff will verify your identity, and will prepare your library materials for you.

Library materials will be checked out on your account, and a library employee will place the materials outside the library in a designated no-contact pickup location. Once staff have returned to the building, you can exit your vehicle to collect your library materials.

Please also note that library staff are not permitted to accept returns in-person; instead, we ask that you place returned materials into an outdoor book return.

For more information about contact-free curbside pickup, visit www.yvl.org/pickup, and remember that we will not be accepting pickup appointments online or by phone until Monday, Aug. 24.

In closing, I’d like to add that this service is as new to us as it is to you, so we appreciate your patience, understanding and cooperation as we get things up and running.

We’re looking forward to serving you again very soon!

• Krystal Corbray is programming and marketing librarian for Yakima Valley Libraries. She and other library staffers write this column for Thursday’s SCENE section. Learn more at www.yvl.org.

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