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City Librarian Community Message

June 9, 2020

Dear Friends,

Decatur Public Library is pleased to announce that next week we will be open for limited hours and services. On Tuesday June 16, the Library will be open from 10a.m. to 4p.m. and on Thursday the 18th from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Patrons will be able to:

  • Browse the shelves
  • Checkout materials
  • Return materials (outside drops only)
  • Pick up holds
  • Get a reference question answered, and
  • There will be limited computer access.

There will not be:

  • Any seating for reading
  • Local History Room access (but the archivist can be contacted via email)
  • On-site programs or meetings.

Curbside service continues to go strong and will continue to be offered on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This means you can place holds/requests for physical items owned by the Decatur Public Library and we will arrange a time for you to pick the items up in our parking lot without ever leaving your car.

Please see more details here: Curbside Pickup

At this time, patrons can only request materials owned by Decatur Public Library. We hope to resume services with other libraries sometime in July. We will update our website and social media accounts when this service resumes.

Please feel free also to return items at any time to our outside drop, just to the right of the automated book return. We are quarantining all materials returned for a minimum of three days, which means that no one will touch these items for 72 hours and often times longer. You will not see the items come off of your account during that time, but if you are a Decatur Public Library cardholder, we will never charge you a late fine.

The fact that these services are limited is temporary. We will work to expand services and hours a little at a time until things are back to normal. Our number one concern is the health and safety of our library users and our staff. We miss our patrons, we miss serving our community—and we are looking forward to seeing you all and serving you again in a way that maximizes your safety.

Don’t forget that the 2020 Summer Reading Challenge is underway. This is our first ever all online Summer Reading. The response thus far has been terrific. So far, we have 568 readers who have logged 47,491 reading minutes. Decatur Public Library has reading challenges for young adults and grown-ups as well.

You can find all the details here: Summer Reading Challenge

Lastly, I’d like to add that, in the wake of the death of George Floyd, the Decatur Public Library stands with the American Library Association and the Illinois Library Association in condemning racism and violence against Black people and all People of Color. Public libraries are institutions that can play an enormous role in leveling the playing field for all and furthering important conversations such as this conversation on race that our country is currently having. Decatur Public Library has every intention of being a part of the solution to the problem of racism. Statements are easy—actions are what matters. We must stay focused, and we will, on working with our whole community to fight these problems. Feel free to reach out to me at with suggestions or concerns. Shortly before the shutdown the library had formed a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee made up of staff and other stakeholders to guide the library in how to improve on these matters. Please stay tuned for news about current and future Library Anti-Racism Initiatives.

Thank you for remaining loyal DPL users—


Rick Meyer

City Librarian

Decatur Public Library

City Librarian Message June 2, 2020