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With Move To Phase 4, You're Free To Browse Library Shelves Again

Libraries in the Peoria area are beginning to reopen their doors and services to the public again with altered guidelines still in place to reinforce safety for patrons and employees alike.

The Peoria Public Library is reopening all five library locations on Monday. The libraries were open for a time as a "grab and go" service before reverting back to curbside service when the state moved to Tier 3 mitigations.

Randall Yelverton, Peoria Public Library executive director, said the library will require all visitors and staff to follow COVID guidelines.

"We are going to require patrons to have masks. We are asking them to maintain six feet of distance. Our meeting rooms are going to be closed," Yelverton said.

"But patrons can enter the library. They can browse. They can pick up their holds. They can make computer appointments. All of our digital services that we've had throughout the pandemic will be available, as well."

On Jan. 25, Region 2 that includes Peoria, Bloomington, Galesburg, Macomb and the Quad Cities, was moved out of more restrictive Tier 1 mitiations by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Yelverton said the entire staff is eager to open the doors again in a safe manner.

"We're very ready. We're excited. And the staff is ready to serve in that capacity, as well," he said.

Fondulac District Library in East Peoria also is reopening Monday.

Genna Buhr, Fondulac Library director, said  the library staff has done a great job at being flexible and responding to the unpredictability the pandemic has caused.

"As this pandemic has kind of ebbed and flowed, we've had to be responsive to whatever the current pandemic environment is," Buhr said. "I think our staff has done a fabulous job of being flexible and thinking of ways to continue to serve our community."

Both libraries will be continuing curbside pick up, while opening their library doors.

Buhr and Yelverton both said their libraries are committed to offering their patrons the plethora of resources the library has to offer, while keeping them safe.

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