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Hello from Orono Public Library!

Although we are currently temporarily closed, we invite our members to explore the plethora of virtual resources in this newsletter to stay engaged, informed, and entertained.

Message from the Director

Laurie CarpenterHappy May OPL patrons! 
While the warm weather, green grass and the return of the phoebes nesting under the eaves of my side porch are cause for celebration, the fact that library services have been temporarily paused are not.
I had hoped that this communication would bring the news that we would start offering some services during the Governor's Phase I. The recommendations at the local, state and federal levels all say that we need to stay the course for now. What that means is that the physical library will remain closed for the time being, the services that we are able to provide are all virtual, and the staff continues to work remotely.
When will that change??  We are taking guidance from the local public health officials, Maine State Library as well as the Institute for Museum and Library Services which is partnering with OCLC, Inc. (a global library cooperative) and Battelle (a not-for-profit global research and development organization). This collaboration serves to carry out a research project that will consider safe reopening practices in light of COVID-19.   Libraries are unique in at least two ways:  materials are exchanged (lent and returned); and the building is a community gathering place. Some considerations in making the decision to reopen include:

  • How long does the virus live on paper, cardboard, inside the pages of a book, DVDs, plastic covers, public seating, public computers, crayons, puppets, toys, etc.?
  • How do we handle different types of materials in order to mitigate exposure?
  • How do we safely offer curbside services?
  • What are the safety issues with Interlibrary loan?
  • How many people can safely be in the library space at one time and does that include staff?
  • How do we provide all the expected services while keeping a safe social distance?
  • What are the legal and insurance ramifications of opening too soon?

There is much to consider and please rest assured that the staff is busy planning and making sure that when we do begin to offer services, that we have public health and safety as our number one priority.
We miss seeing all of you and know that many of you miss having new (physical) books on a regular basis. We are so sorry that we can’t make the return to regular library services happen sooner. When we are able to reopen, it will be cause for a celebration, albeit at a 6 ft distance, and with masks and gloves - but definitely a celebration!!

Be well and stay safe,
Laurie & OPL staff

Orono Public Library - Zooming in, Zooming out, keeping our focus!

What are we up to?  Library staff are working at home to bring you the COVID-19 version of services from Orono Public Library.  We continue to have our weekly staff meetings, via Zoom, instead of around one of the tables in the library.  

Need help with a digital service?  Have a question about your account?  Know someone who needs a new library card to access digital services?  We’re here to help.  Email, or call 866-5060 and leave a message.  We’ll get back to you!

cloudLibrary Orono Exclusives

Orono Public Library has started purchasing its own cloudLibrary titles!  Look for them on the “Featured” tab of the cloudLibrary app.  While these titles are available to borrow by patrons all over Maine, only Orono patrons can place holds on them, which should reduce your waiting time.  Look for:

  • Current best sellers such as John Grisham’s Camino Winds, Stephen King’s It Bleeds, and Jojo Moyes’ Giver of Stars

  • Highly recommended new literary titles such as C. Pam Zhang’s How Much of These Hills Is Gold and N. K. Jemisin’s The City We Became

  • Audiobooks still constantly in high demand, such as Michelle Obama’s Becoming and Delia Owen’s Where the Crawdads Sing, and Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere

  • New books for teens and kids such as Rebecca Stead’s new The List of Things That Will Not Change, Jessica Kim’s Stand Up, Yumi Chung!, and Ben Oliver’s The Loop


cloudLibrary - "The Indie Author Project"

MaineInfonet will be adding the Indie Author Project to cloudLibrary! Watch for these always-available titles on the Featured tab. 
More about the Indie Author Project, from IAP: 

“The Indie Author Project (IAP) features top indie-published books in adult and young adult fiction. The books are curated by Library Journal and library editorial boards in regions across North America and were chosen by editors and librarians from thousands of submissions. IAP Select features NY Times and USA Today best-selling authors, numerous award winners, as well as the 2019 Indie Author of the Year Ran Walker’s award-winning title, Daykeeper, in eBook and soon-to-be audiobook formats. All IAP eBooks are circulated sustainably in an unlimited, simultaneous use model to library patrons.”

Travel Tuesday is back, virtually of course!

Greg Westrich presented his program on Hiking Maine Waterfalls on April 28 via Zoom to 46 participants! 

Tuesday, May 5th at 6:00 p.m. 

UMaine Climate Change Institute Research Assistant Professor, Dan Dixon, will share slides and stories from his ice-coring expedition in the New Zealand Southern Alps. Check our Facebook page for the Zoom link on May 5th.

OPL Uke Jam met via Zoom in April and plans to do it again on May 12.  Participants took turns leading songs and enjoyed making some music together.  Email if you’d like to participate.  


Youth Services Update

Join us on Facebook Live for a picture book story Thursdays at 11 and a chapter book read aloud Fridays at 3:30.  We hosted April’s Pajama Story time via zoom, and plan to continue that monthly, email to request an invitation.  Voting has been extended for the MSBA and Chickadee awards, if you are ready to vote for either, please email Janette. 

No Pre-Reqs goes virtual!

Orono Public Library is taking No-PreReqs virtual!  We will be hosting the remaining book group discussions online using Zoom computer software.  You do not need to read the book to join in the discussion. If you are not currently a book group member, please email to sign up and be sent a Zoom invitation for each discussion.

Home Now by Cynthia Anderson
Date: Thursday, May 7th at 6:00 p.m.
Facilitated by: Linda Silka, PHD Senior Fellow, Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability
How to read the book: 
  • Buy Local - Bull Moose is selling new hardcover copies for $19.97.  I have personally used them recently - they deliver within days. 
  • Bull Moose is also partnering with for audiobooks - - they have this audiobook for $29.98
  • Amazon is offering the book at $16.99 for Kindle, $16.39 hardcover, 
  • - $29.65 on  You can also try a free 30-day trial of Audible, and access it that way.
  • An eBook and an audiobook version on cloudLibrary, but likely with holds.

American Character by Colin Woodard 
Date: Tuesday, May 19th at 6:00 p.m.

Facilitated by: François Amar, Dean, UMaine Honors College
How to read the book: Existing group members received their copy of this book before the library building closed. If you still want to read the book:
  • Bull Moose is also partnering with for audiobooks - - they have this audiobook for $28.74
  • Amazon kindle - $12.99, Amazon paperback - $12.99
  • - $21.83. You can also try a free 30-day trial of Audible, and access it for free that way.

Missing the BookPage magazine you used to grab at the library? Visit them online at:

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