August 6, 2021 – Leonardtown, Md. – St. Mary’s County Library is pleased to release the Fiscal Year 2021 Annual Report. Find the report on www.stmalib.org or directly at https://spark.adobe.com/page/nZ3Ds6XlDOALg/. The St. Mary’s County Library experienced new challenges and opportunities this year. Shutdowns and limited public service points made way for new services such as curbside pickup, grab bags of Librarian-selected materials, and virtual programs, classes, and events. The new Leonardtown Library opened after a difficult move during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic closures. Our digital content usage grew by 23% and we continued to provide excellent customer service and resources for everyone in our community!
Find the statistics, stories, and images that help us demonstrate the Library’s community impact this past year. Highlights include:
- 767,430 items checked out
- 147,143 digital items were checked out
- 1,086 hours of Lynda.com/LinkedIn Learning training
- 4,000 sessions of language learning on Mango Languages
- Over 24,000 searches on Ancestry.com
- 80,864 people visited us in-person
- Over 400 programs that over 8,000 people attended
- 20,395 curbside appointments
- Our public computers had over 12,500 sessions logged
- Free WiFi was accessed over 4,000 times.
- 48,097 card users
St. Mary’s County Library launched our app and continues to provide vital technology access.
Find our new app on both Google Play and the Apple Store. Check your account, search the catalog, save your library card number directly in the app, check out digital content, and even scan a book’s ISBN to instantly see if we have it in our collection! You can access all of our digital content with quick links to apps from Overdrive and hoopla.
Our free-to-use public computers have internet access and Microsoft Office, and we have a workstation at each location that provides assistive technology to citizens of Maryland protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In addition to computers and WiFi, we have printers at each location that can print full color, scanners, faxing capability, and laptops that can be checked out to use in the Library.
The new Leonardtown Library opened during the pandemic in August 2020 and the drive-thru was able to open earlier in June 2020. The new Library boasts two large meeting rooms, a children’s activity room, 5 study rooms, a makerspace, a computer lab, a full teen area, and a special Maryland Room to hold materials of local interest. Comfortable seating and many new computers stations also add to the welcoming atmosphere.
We helped our community stay connected! Libraries opened for computer appointments before we were able to open fully. In the spring of 2020, we extended the Wi-Fi range from our buildings and hours to be on 24/7 at all Library locations, and we continued to offer our mobile hotspots to those that needed connection. Utilized our 3D printers to produce COVID aid items such as face shields for the Charlotte Hall Veteran’s Home as part of a community partnership. Our staff answered over 1,500 calls about the COVID-19 vaccine and registered over 400 individuals to help the SMC Health Department. We leveraged grants, such as the CARES grant, to obtain cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment for our staff and the public, and air purifying units to create the safest possible Library environment.
“The last year was of course challenging for our county and country,” said St. Mary’s County Library Director Michael Blackwell, “but we responded nimbly and innovatively. We reopened after pandemic restrictions as early as any library in Maryland, stayed open as consistently as any, and monitored the situation to offer drive-up and in-person service safely while increasing our virtual programming and digital offerings. We were instrumental in passing Maryland SB432, the ‘Electronic Literary Product Licenses Access’ legislation, suggesting the legislation, providing testimony, and rebutting lobbying efforts against it. It became law in June. The first bill of its kind in the country, it will ensure increased library readers’ access to ebooks and audiobooks for Maryland and indeed all U.S. readers in a time of great demand. I’m proud of our employees who provided cheerful service in new and traditional ways to help our county residents in a most difficult time.”
Thank you for helping us have an unforgettable year!