Library Manager Provides Update on Last Year’s Activities, Reach to Yelm City Council


The Yelm Timberland Library signed up 3,000 new patrons and reached an active patron count of over 7,000 people last year, according to an update provided to the Yelm City Council on March 14.

Erica McCaleb, the manager of the Yelm Timberland Library, said they had a busy year in 2022 as the library had 7,600 Wi-Fi sessions on its computers.

The library also had a total circulation of over 181,000 physical and digital items last year. In total, they distributed 11,000 books, held over 650 programs and had over 9,600 attendees at events, McCaleb said.

“All in all, we’ve been busy circulating items, helping people access resources and engaging with our community,” McCaleb said.

There were several renovation projects completed at the library in 2022, which included the “refreshing” of the children’s area. McCaleb said the children’s play area doubled in size during the project. The library also introduced flexible seating, a coloring table, a new rug, a computer station and new toys to its revamped children’s area.

The work room areas were also updated with sit-stand desks and new chairs. McCaleb added the library “decluttered” and maximized its footprint through the efforts.

McCaleb said the library debuted new collection items last year, which included plankton and fishing kits, along with kitchen tools and other items. Perhaps the most useful kit was the “Check Out Washington” kit, she said.

The kit included an Explore Washington bag, equipped with binoculars, nature pamphlets and a Discover Pass, which is required for vehicle access to state parks and recreational lands maintained by the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Washington State Department of Natural Resources.

The library also recently launched new tools for kids like Launchpad, Vox Books and Playaway.

“This technology is to help bridge the gap in learning how to read. Launchpad tablets are loaded with apps, videos, storybooks and games for kids,” McCaleb said. “They’re 100% secured. They do not have internet.”

In addition to the new technology introduced for children, the Timberland Regional Library offers its older patrons Wi-Fi. They are able to use the computers to print, scan and fax items, and can also utilize remote printing. The library, along with the other 28 Timberland Regional Library locations, allow people to use iPads at the facility as well.

McCaleb also announced the return of the annual summer reading program, which reverted back to an in-person format last summer. The annual summer activity will span from June 1 to Aug. 31. McCaleb said people of all ages can join by completing three steps.

People can visit any Timberland library location beginning on June 1 to receive a free book and activity log. Then through Aug. 31, participants can track and log 10 activities. Once the log is complete, they can return it to any Timberland location to receive a certificate of completion and prizes.

The Yelm Timberland Regional Library is located at 210 Prairie Park St. in Yelm.


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