Will our cyber society……the iPhones, iPads, Blackberries, Facebooks, Internet info and other such gizmos render our libraries obsolete? Perhaps not. Let me refer to information
in the annual report by Anne-Marie Despain, who is our delightful Director of Library Services.
In the last year (2009 – 2010), over 2.3 million people visited our county libraries and more than 3.9 million books and other library materials were checked out. Over 300,000 hours of computer access were provided, library staff answered more than 200,000 customer questions, and over 31,000 hours of service were provided to the community. Over 6,500 programs and activities were offered to more than 195,000 children and adults. This does not include loans of our electronic/ digital books or ―hits‖ on electronic databases. Soon we will be able to download books for free for a three week period, after which they, like Cinderella, must vanish.
Where does our Belmont Library fit into these figures? We had 554,880 items circulated.
We have 20,416 library card holders and 328,498 people visited our library. Thanks to the leadership of our Belmont Director Kathleen Beasley, the cooperation of Ed Kaufman from
―“M” is for Mystery and More, and Joan Peceimer, the Program Director for the FOBL, and the good work of Carol Hatfield, our Publicity person, we have had 20,879 attend our programs in Belmont.
Most recently we were entertained by John Lescroart who read from his latest book, Damage, which features Abe Glitsky as the protagonist. John at one time worked in our Belmont
library, attended Serra High School and went on to earn a B.A. in English with Honors at UC Berkeley in 1970. Some of you may remember him as Johnny Capo and His Real Good
Band. He performed his own songs at clubs and honky-tonks in the San Francisco Bay area. He has been known to bring his guitar and sing for us in the Belmont library. His record label
CROWART features a black feather and is pronounced the way his name is spelled Lescroart….. as opposed to ―les’kwa‖, the way it sounds. He has written 17 novels, and has been
translated into 20 languages in more than 75 countries. In the past decade he has sold more than 8.5 million books, 14 which have appeared on the New York Times best seller list. He is an interesting author and an engaging guy. We were lucky to have him visit our library and we wish him and all of you Double Good Fortune in the New Year.
by: Pat Barkett, the FOBL President