Library services still available despite building being closed

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Deena C. Bouknight – Contributing Writer 

While the Macon County Public Library Building at 149 Siler Farm Road in Franklin might have temporarily locked its doors because of the N.C. governor’s stay-at-home mandate, library cardholders still have access to numerous resources via online services. 

For example, eBooks and eAudiobooks are available. By downloading OverDrive and/or the new Libby app on any computer, smartphone, or tablet, users can choose from and reserve a practically unlimited selection of non-fiction, educational, and fiction books. Videos and read-alongs are available through the NC Kids Digital Library option. And the Never-ending Reading Collection is a list of “always available” books and resources with no check-out limits. 

At-home tweens, teens, and young adults will find juvenile fiction and nonfiction titles in the library’s eReading Room for Kids and the Teens Digital Library.

For individuals accessing e-iNC and NC Kids Digital Libraries for the first time, there are help aids on the Macon County Public Library website:

– Getting Started with the Libby App

– Getting Started with OverDrive

– OverDrive Help Portal

Access to streaming videos for all ages, for a variety of devices and from a variety of sources, is available through the library’s Kanopy and NCLive options. 

And, most recently, the library added Universal Class, which offers more than 500 free, 24/7 educational classes in such subjects as creative and novel writing, soap making, accounting and finance, pet care, cake decorating, Excel 2019, entrepreneurship, real estate, and much more. Users of Universal Class can learn a new skill, brush up on a career endeavor, or takes classes simply to broaden the mind. Some career-oriented classes provide certification. 

Also new is NC Learn@Home, designed to gather online content and educational resources into one place for teachers, students, parents, and anyone needing enriching experiences, regardless of their location. This site is especially helpful due for kids out of school staying at home. 

For library cardholders interested in using quarantine time to delve into family history, several resources are listed under Genealogy: ArchiveGrid, DigitalNC, Heritage Quest, Historic North Carolina Digital Newspaper Collection, and more. 

In addition, Macon County Public Library has noted that Wi-Fi extends around the perimeter of library buildings and can generally be picked up from sections of the parking lots – for individuals who may not have access to Wi-Fi at their residences. Plus, overdue fines for materials due during the April 1 through April 30 stay-at-home mandate will be waived.

Anyone who does not have a library card but needs one to use eBooks or other electronic resources can go to https://fontanalib.org/contact and submit a request for a card. General information is required – name, date of birth, and a phone number. Individuals who sign up for a library card will receive an email with an account number and instructions for using eResources.

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