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Davis, California

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Pedal-powered mini-mobile libraries roll around Davis


Yolo County Public Library introduces new book bikes

Yolo County Public Library recently implemented a new service in the Davis branch, as well as the Woodland Public Library: book bikes.

The California State Library’s U.S. Institute of Museum & Library Services issued a $10,000 grant to the Yolo County and Woodland Public Library branches, which funded the book bike project.

The book bikes are custom built trailers that have bookshelves inside for library materials. These mobile-libraries are full-service libraries where people can check out books, access computer-equipped free Wi-Fi and sign up for library cards.

“Our goal is to get books in the hands of children in our community who many not have a library card or come to the library,” said Greta Galindo, Woodland Library services director, in an interview with the SacBee.

The book bikes do exactly that. The mobile libraries cleverly cater to whichever location they travel to, and even take requests from the public by phone or in-person. Dana Christy, Yolo County librarian and book bike project manager, sees the potential of the project in Davis.

“We can curate the collection to fit whatever group of folks we are going to visit,” Christy said. “We take requests for regular stops where customers can request something and we take the materials out to them.”

The book bikes also increase community outreach and help the library bring books to the public. Lower-income residents and people who are incapable of making their way out to the library can now easily access the library resources.

“One of our [Yolo County Library] big missions is ‘Equality, Equity and Service’,” Scott Love, library regional manager said. “This was another opportunity to take service [out to the community]. There is this misconception that in the digital age libraries are not as popular or needed. The reality is kind of the opposite. We are busy now than ever, we just changed how we do business and this is one example of that.”

The library also recently spurred another new service: books-by-mail. People can apply to receive library materials by mail for a month for free, and renew the books as needed.

Yolo County Library’s book bike will be stationed at Eleanor Roosevelt Circle on Wednesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and every other Monday at the Cesar Chavez Co-Op from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. The book bike has also made appearances at some Davis events, including the Davis Farmer’s Market and Davis Pride, and plans to continue expanding this year.


Written By: Bianca Antunez – city@theaggie.org


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