Informational Alert | Coronavirus Updates

Director's Message


New library at night
Hello again, CPL community! 

As May arrives, many are feeling the upswell of hope that comes with springtime! We've seen the showers, let's bring on the flowers! 

The mention of flowers reminds me of yet one more loss resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Friends of the Cambridge Public Library have canceled their popular Secret Garden Tour for 2020. They are hopeful to be able to host it in 2021 instead. Many thanks to the Friends' Board, volunteers, and gardeners, who had already done quite a bit of work towards this effort. 

In more positive news, it seems the CPL is gaining popularity for our virtual resources, services and programming! 

-Over 900 Cambridge residents have become new Overdrive users in the past six months.  

-This March, funds from the Cambridge Public Library Foundation enabled us to increase Hoopla checkouts from 3 to 15. March had 237 new registered Hoopla users - from 108 new users in February.  

-A record breaking 3479 checkouts occurred in March, up from 1730 the month before. Audiobooks remain the top checkouts, however, Hoopla's
eBook, TV Series and Comics collections are also experiencing increased usage.   

-Since mid-March, 357 patrons signed up for online Library cards- an average of about 8 per day. 

-Our new reader advisory service, Your Next Great Read, has received 162 patron recommendation requests since it began 2 weeks ago. Patrons clicked through on 245 links to the MLN catalog from our recommendation emails. 

-We are starting to receive patron questions via our new Ask Us service. 

-We've hosted 3 Virtual Family Story Times, averaging about 65-70 families actively participating in each. 

-Our first Passions & Pathways talk, where designers, scientists, engineers and business professionals share the stories and pathways to their careers, had 37 participants, while we hosted 33 at our second session. 

-Our Bullet Journaling During the COVID-19 Pandemic webinar has registered an astonishing 1000+ views! 

Registration is now open for The Hope Storytelling Project @ the Cambridge Public Library, a virtual series of 5 bi-weekly poetry workshops discussing the theme of hope. The workshops seek to help participants share their own stories through poetry, and to create community during this time of social isolation. This workshop is hosted and taught by Harvard students David Xiang and Alisha Yi.  The deadline for registration is May 24th, 2020 at 11:59 pm. Learn more here. 

The Library is also virtually hosting Porsha Olayiwola presents i shimmer sometimes, too on Monday, May 18th, 7 pm - 8 pm EST. Olayiwola is a writer, performer, educator and curator who uses afro-futurism and surrealism to examine historical and current issues in the Black, woman, and queer diasporas. A Zoom link will be emailed to registrants prior to the event. Registration is required

Thank you all for your continued patronage at the Cambridge Public Library. Wishing you all the best for the week ahead! 

Maria McCauley, Director of Libraries