Re: Feature films

HIRSCH Bonnie C (
Thu, 6 May 1999 13:23:20 -0700 (PDT)

Actually, our videos are shelved on open stacks that are high enough that
many of us need a step stool for the top shelf. We have no room for any more
spinners - the stacks are as close together as the floor load limits allow;
there are CD bins on all the window sills; there is almost no place left in
the library to just sit and read, even in the children's section. Our 1959
library was built when Eugene's population was 50,000 and circulaltion was
about 6-700 items a day. The library was designed to be adequate for ten
years. Since then, Eugene's population has tripled and our circulation has
increased to about 3,500-4,000 items a day. We are finally getting our first
branch library this fall, and the architects are designing our new library,
which should be open in 2002. Meanwhile we have an extremely creative staff
here, but a balloon can only stretch so much before it breaks.
No, we don't think of the video collection as a poor relation. Each
section of the library gets a designated budget based on the percentage of
circulation, the cost of items, and the age of the collection in that area.
The video collection gets its fair share of the budget; in addition, the
selectors for various other areas also sometimes buy videos out of their
budgets. We could spend our entire materials budget on videos, or talking
books, or art, or history, or fiction, and still not satisfy our patrons,
who tend to be highly educated, avid for more learning, and voracious
*readers* as well as video viewers.

Bonnie Hirsch
Eugene Public Library
From: Mary Gontarek --- Owatonna Public Library
To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: Re: Feature films
Date: Thursday, May 06, 1999 11:47AM

Just a quick question. Having worked in a space-challenged library myself
that past 25 years, I understand the frustrations imposed by the physical
limitations of your library. However, before we built our addition, we
managed to come up with some pretty creative ways to utitlize our limited
space. Do you put your videos out on the floor or keep them behind the desk?
We found that spinners, while not ideal, work quite well when you have
floor space. Because I don't know your situation, I don't want to presume
much but I've found over the years that if you want to find room for
you usually can! Also I have to give a great deal of credit to our director,
a videophobe who would rather be force-fed through a nose-tube than have to
and watch a video - any video! Still, he recognizes the importance of
for both the educational and recreational needs of our community. Over the
years, we have built up very strong community support and we believe that is
one of the reasons we were able to build our recent addition. If you only
think of your video collection as a poor relation to the rest of your
collection then you've already set your priorities and I'm sure my opinions
won't count
for much. One more reason to have media librarians but that was another
Mary Gontarek
Media Specialist
Owatonna Public Library
Owatonna, MN