Innovation for the Modern Library

Cutler Book Machine Sends Out 300 Books, Adds 200 Library Cards In One Day!

This library is gathering no dust with their new Brodart Library Vending Machine. This Lending Library is wonderfully located across the street from a school in Tulare County, CA and is on the kids’ way home. On day one,¬†there were kids streaming in from everywhere excited about the machine. There were about 300 kids at the grand opening event and 200 of them signed up for new library cards. This is an area where 60% of the population does not have a high school education and 80% are mono-lingual Spanish speakers. There was a whole row of books gone in under an hour and the machine was empty by end of the day. That’s 300 books in one day and by the end of the week, they knew they would have to restock the machine three times a week. This library is changing lives!

Here’s a blog posting about the Lending Library machine:

http://gathernodust.blogspot.com/2010/11/cutler-lending-library-unveiled.html

Lending Library’s Vending Machine Extending Service In Litchfield

This post taken from the Wolcott Newspaper.

Lending library’s vending machine extending service in Litchfield

BY JOHN MCKENNA REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN LITCHFIELD

Residents of Bantam no longer have to visit Oliver Wolcott Library to grab a book, an audio book, or a DVD.

Now they can do it at Bantam’s Big Value Supermarket.

The library, using two grants totaling $36,500, has installed a vending machine anyone with a library card can use to check out materials. Known as the OWL Box, it’s the first machine of its kind in the state, according to Oliver Wolcott Library’s director, Anne Marie White.

“We wanted to reach out to the people in Bantam and others in that area who can’t always get to the center of town,” White said. “Providing greater access to our materials is a goal, and we thought Big Value would be an ideal place to do it.” From the library in Litchfield to the store in Bantam is about 3.5 miles.

The machine, which is roughly the same size as a food or soda vending machine, is stationed at the entrance to the store. It is full of materials library card holders can check out by inserting their library card. Card holders from any library in the state can use the machine.

Mary Tetreault of Bantam has already dipped into the OWL Box and finds it convenient and easy to use.

“If I need something, it’s a lot easier to go there than into Litchfield,” Tetreault said. “I’m sure I’ll use it often.”

The machine has gone over well with Bantam’s senior citizens, Tetreault said. Big Value is close to Bantam’s two senior citizen housing communities and is a pick-up and drop-off point for the town’s senior citizen bus.

Grants of $25,000 from the Praxair Foundation and $11,500 from the Seherr-Thoss Foundation of Litchfield funded the purchase of the machine. Its contents are updated several times a week, White said.

The machine extends the library’s reach to Bantam at no cost to the town, which funds about half of the library’s annual budget.

“We’re offering more without adding staff and overhead,” White said.