By MADDY VITALE
The Ocean City Free Public Library (OCFPL) is gearing up for spring with plans to offer even more in-person events, while still offering the popular virtual presentations as well.
During a meeting of the OCFPL Board of Trustees on Monday, members discussed the continued emphasis on giving patrons plenty of choices to fill their calendars. People will still be able to view Zoom presentations from featured authors, chefs, and others. And they will also be able to watch and listen to speakers at the library.
The focus for spring, while following continued COVID-19 safety and protocols, will be on choices, OCFPL officials said.
Library Director Karen Mahar told the board during her report that there will also be a continued emphasis on doing activities outside.
Currently, the library offers StoryWalk, headed by OCFPL Children’s Librarian Taimi Kelley. Weather permitting, the popular attraction engages families in reading, while taking an outdoor stroll.
“We are getting ready for the season and preparing for the spring and the summer activities,” Mahar said.
She continued, “The city started renovating the area next to the Senior Center. So hopefully, by spring, we will have it set up so my children’s librarian can use the area. She likes to do things outside with the children.”
To kick-start the spring calendar of events, the Friends and Volunteers of the OCFPL will host its Spring Book Sale on Friday, March 18, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday, March 19, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the library atrium.
The annual sale offers patrons fiction, non-fiction, children’s books and an array of other items at discounts, including puzzles.
In addition, the Friends and Volunteers will also be providing books for the Ocean City Primary School students as special gifts they provide yearly, Friends and Volunteers liaison to the OCFPL Board of Trustees Patti Phillips explained in her report to the board.
In addition to continued outdoor programing and the spring book sale, Mahar noted that there is a new book drop at 17th Street, an upgrade from the one that was previously there. There are still two others available to patrons on the property, including one placed at the Senior Center.
This Saturday, the OCFPL Bookmobile will be at the Ocean City Environmental Commission’s Nature and Environmental Fun Day at the Music Pier. The event is from 10:30 a.m. to noon.
The OCFPL will also have a table displaying materials for people to peruse, Mahar noted.
Routinely, the library’s bookmobile makes stops at homebound residences as well as senior housing, and other locations throughout town.
Mahar remarked that the library often receives thank you notes about the services provided by the bookmobile.
The library makes stops at senior housing complexes, such as United Methodist Communities, The Shores.
“We received a nice thank you note from the residents at The Shores,” Mahar said. “They are so grateful for the gift of books.”
Some people express appreciation for the library through donations in honor of loved ones who have passed away, Mahar said.
“Throughout the year, families ask to make donations in their name to the library,” Mahar said. “It is really nice that people donate in people’s names.”
To learn more about the Ocean City Free Public Library, located at 1735 Simpson Ave. in the Community Center, visit www.oceancitylibrary.org.