Please visit your library branch's website for the latest hours and services. Call us or contact us at http://athenslibrary.org/homepage/regional-information/contact-us if you have any questions regarding library service during this time. For more information about the libraries' phased re-entry plans, please click here  

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FAQs

Message from the Director

UPDATED: September 20, 2020

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Dear Library User,
I am very pleased to announce that in addition to our current services, most county libraries will be moving to the next phase of the libraries re-opening plan.  Those libraries will be welcoming patrons back into our facilities for Grab and Go service beginning September 28, 2020.  

Due to the recent spike in Coronavirus cases, the Athens-Clarke County libraries will not be participating in Grab and Go service at this time.  We will, however, continue the services that are currently being offered:  Extended curbside hours, computers by appointment, document delivery, reference chat, and passport services.  The active cases and infection rates in Athens-Clarke County will be reviewed weekly with the hope of opening for Grab and Go service in early October.  Please read the full Message from the Director here.

2020 Census Deadline is September 30, 2020

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Time is running out to complete your 2020 U.S. Census! The Census directly impacts resources allocated for healthcare, education and infrastructure. It’s important to ensure everyone in our communities is counted. Completing the census is safe, secure and easy. It only takes about 10 minutes at my2020census.gov. Don’t forget: our libraries offer wi-fi access in our parking lots in case you need it, or call us to set up a computer session. The deadline to respond to the Census is September 30, 2020. Read the statement on the Census from U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham, dated Aug. 3, 2020, here.

Voter Registration Deadline is October 5, 2020

Be A VoterAre you registered to vote? The deadline to register for the November General Election is October 5, 2020. Please visit our Voter Information page for detailed nonpartisan information, including important dates related to elections, lists of candidates by county, statewide candidates, current officials, and other voter information.

Updated Services

As part of its phased reentry plan, the Athens Regional Library System continues to expand its available services while protecting the health and safety of patrons and staff.

Grab and Go: Many Athens Regional Library System branches will open for Grab and Go service starting Monday, September 28, 2020. Patrons will be able to visit their library branch to browse parts of the collection, place and pick up holds, and check out items. Unvented face masks are required. Visits are limited to one hour or less. Some branches will limit visits to 30 minutes or less. Check your local library branch’s webpage for hours here.

curbside updatedCurbside Service: Place holds at our website, through the PINES mobile app, in-person at your library, or by phone. We’ll notify you when your items are ready for pickup. Our libraries also offer curbside print pickup. Email your document to your local Athens Regional Library System branch, and we’ll notify you when it’s ready for pickup! Learn more about print pickup and find your library’s printing email here

 Book Drops: Our book drops are now open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We ask that checked-out materials be placed in our outdoor bookdrops and not brought into the buildings for check-in. We’ll hold all returned items in quarantine before checking them in, which means your return won’t show up on your account right away. Don’t worry! No fines will be charged if you’ve returned items by their original due date. Please note, our libraries are not accepting donations for the time being.

Computer Appointments: Selected branches of Athens Regional Library System offer Internet computer sessions by appointment. Reserve your one-hour session by calling your local branch library. You can reserve one session per day and up to two sessions per week. Please note you will be required to wear an unventilated face mask while at the library, and limited staff assistance will be available. Printing services will be available. Athens-Clarke County Library also offers one-hour appointments for patrons who would like to work at the library using their own device. or more information, including details on what to do when you arrive at the library for your appointment, click here. 

Athens-Clarke County Library: Passports:  The Athens-Clarke County Library accepts passport applications by appointment. Please call the library at 706-613-3650 to set up your appointment. Saturday appointments are available! 

  • Please note appointments must be made via phone.
  • Masks must be worn.
  • Only the applicants should be present.

Please check their website at https://travel.state.gov/content/travel.html for the most current information.

Resources That Promote Equity

current events resourcesThe Athens Regional Library System embraces diversity, inclusion, and social justice. These are a part of our organizational values and at the heart of our public services. We support the members of our communities who are in pain, those who are on a quest to educate themselves around the issues of race, and those wondering how to talk with children and young people about these issues. To help with those endeavors, we have developed the following list of resources. We will be adding to this list as the days go by. Much like the challenging events our communities have experienced over the last three months, the Library believes that we are in this together, and together we will see our way through. Visit our resources here

Athens Regional Library System named Georgia Public Library of the Year

The Athens Regional Library System logo with Georgia Public Library of the Year, 2017.

The Georgia Public Library Service (GPLS) has named Athens Regional Library System as Georgia’s Public Library of the Year for 2017. The award is one of five annual Georgia Public Library Awards, honoring the outstanding service and achievements of Georgia’s public libraries, librarians and advocates during the past year.

“It is once again our pleasure to recognize library colleagues and supporters who have made Georgia’s public libraries exceptional. This year’s winners of the Georgia Public Library Awards demonstrate the very best in innovation, community engagement, and tireless dedication to serving the citizens of our state, playing a vital role in creating a more educated, enlightened Georgia,” said State Librarian Julie Walker.

“I am especially pleased to congratulate the Athens Regional Library System on being selected as Georgia’s Library of the Year. The leadership team, staff and trustees of ARLS do a terrific job of working together to offer creative programming, thoughtful customer service, and strong community partnerships that benefit library users of all ages throughout the five counties they serve. This is a richly-deserved honor.”

The Public Library of the Year award, presented to the library whose staff best exemplifies the qualities needed to positively impact the lives of residents in the communities it serves, will be presented to the Athens Regional Library System and its employees at a 3 p.m. ceremony at Athens-Clarke County Library Sunday, Jan. 21.

“I am beyond proud of our library staff. It is such an amazing honor to be recognized for the hard work we do every day in each of our branches,” said Athens Regional Library System Executive Director Valerie Bell. “Every single one of our employees has played an instrumental role in winning this award. This is a beautiful tribute to staff’s commitment to our vision statement, ‘Engaging Communities … Exceeding Expectations.’ I’d also like to say a special thank you to the many community partners and patrons who wrote letters of support for our nomination.”

The Athens Regional Library System is the first multi-library system to be recognized as Georgia’s Public Library of the Year. The system serves residents in five Northeast Georgia counties – Athens-Clarke, Franklin, Madison, Oconee and Oglethorpe – at 11 branches with a combination of innovative technology and friendly customer service.

Additional awards are being presented to Carolyn Fuller of Henry County as Librarian of the Year, Rep. Terry England and Sen. Jack Hill as Champions of the Year, and Stephen Whigham of Eastman, Ga., who is receiving the first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award.

In addition to the individual presentation events, this year’s winners will be recognized at a public ceremony during the Georgia Council for Public Libraries’ annual Public Library Day at the Capitol on Tuesday, Jan. 30.

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