Library branch remains busy

In August, there were 9,593 items circulated at the Armstrong library branch.

Things are busy at the Okanagan Regional Library’s Armstrong branch, according to its new manager.

Julie White gave a brief presentation to Spallumcheen council, starting with the fact that in August, there were 9,593 items circulated at the local library branch.

“That’s quite outstanding for a branch our size,” said White, adding that circulation figures don’t completely reflect a branch’s overall activity.

While the Armstrong branch’s story time and summer reading club for children continue to be hits, programs for adults are just as popular.

“These programs are a great success,” said White. “So far, we’ve had two book launches, a pain management workshop, poetry reading, writing class and a very, very popular estate planning workshop which attracted more than 30 people.”

The branch hosts a book club once a month and it is currently offering technical training programs on Tuesday afternoons in September.

“There’s more demand for these programs than we are able to meet,” said White.

“It shows there’s a real need for introductory programs on how to use technical devices as they’ve become a huge part of our lives.”

To that end, the Armstrong branch is keen to establish community partnerships, including one with Pleasant Valley Secondary School where a teen tutors an older person on how to use hand-held devices, iPads, laptop computers and tablets.

Coming up, the branch will host a fly-tying and another estate planning workshop. They’re also exploring starting a chess club, Friday night crafts and an introduction to permaculture (developing agricultural ecosystems to be sustainable and self-sufficient).

With all of these events going on, White pointed out, the branch can get quite cramped.

“According to the ORL guidelines, updated in June, Armstrong is only at 65 per cent of required size for a branch its size,” she said.

Branches with similar operating hours to Armstrong – Oliver and Revelstoke – are bigger.

Revelstoke is at 89 per cent of its required size and Oliver is at 119 per cent.