Georgetown Public Library’s Bookmobile is out and about
“I’m the one who usually drives in my family,” Michele Harber, Georgetown’s Community Outreach Librarian, explains. “I like driving.”
And a good thing, too, because she now traverses Georgetown’s streets in a brightly colored thirty-two-foot-long bookmobile. It may not be as exciting as the ice cream truck, but Michele hopes children flock to the bookmobile just as eagerly as they run to the seller of cold, sweet confections.
The intention is that the bookmobile will keep children, even the reluctant readers, reading throughout the summer. “The library can sometimes be intimidating,” Michele admits, “but the bookmobile with one librarian—even if she has gray hair—that might not be so scary.”
Throughout June, July, and August, the bookmobile schedule caters to children on summer vacation, but from September to May, Michele will follow an aggressive schedule of forty-eight stops a month as she visits Georgetown’s older citizens. Some will be able to enter the bookmobile on their own. At other locations, Michele will cart books inside the nursing homes and living centers for patrons’ perusal.
Michele will also provide a story time for Alzheimer patients who are unable to read to themselves. “I was told they have about a fifteen-to-twenty-minute attention span, which is pretty much the same for the elementary children.”
Some people might have concerns about dealing with such disparate age groups, but not Michele. She believes that her whole life has groomed her for this position. “My mother had me when she was forty years old, and as a result of that, I’ve always been around older people, but I love children, too. Hopefully, they’ll all sense the love I have for them.”
But Michele wants people to understand the bookmobile isn’t just for the young and the elderly. It’s for everyone. “If you have a Georgetown Public Library card, you can use the bookmobile. If you’re driving down the road and see me parked at a location and you have books that need to be dropped off at the library, you can drop them off with me.” The same idea also applies to checking out a book.
“I love people and I love books,” Michele says. She couldn’t have a better job and confesses to being in her second childhood. “And I’m enjoying it!” Who wouldn’t feel the same way? She gets to drive happiness all around town. And just like the ice cream truck, the bookmobile comes with its own musical horn that plays 70 different songs. Who wouldn’t run out to see that?
The book mobile schedule can be found at the Georgetown Public Library website at www.library.georgetown.org.