Library Flood FAQ

Your one-stop-shop for questions related to the library flood. 

Is the library open right now? 

No! The library is closed and all services are temporarily suspended. The drop-box is also closed. 

What should I do with the library books I have checked out?

Please keep them at home. All due dates have been extended one week and there are no late fees. {Fun fact: we don’t have late fees! We quit charging late fees a year and a half ago!} We do not have the ability to check books in or out right now. If you really don’t want them at your house, you can return them to the Northfield library. 

What if my materials were from another library?

Please keep them at home. All due dates have been extended one week and there are no late fees. If you really don’t want them at your house, you can return them to the Northfield library.

What about books/movies/things that I have requested from another library?  UPDATED 1/18

Books on hold for Lonsdale patrons are temporarily being routed to Northfield Public Library starting Friday, January 19th. Check your account to see if and when they arrive in Northfield.

What if I want or need an item right now?

Your Lonsdale library card works at any other library in the SELCO system. You can head over to any of those libraries and check out books/materials just like you would in Lonsdale. You can also place requests through the Lonsdale library website and then pick it up in Northfield or another library in our system. 

What about ebooks and eaudiobooks through Libby?

Digital content has not been affected. You can still check out ebooks like normal. 

Where are the other libraries in our system?

There are 34 other libraries in our system, the SELCO region. Here is a full listing: https://www.selco.info/find-a-library/.

When will the library be open?

Great question! We hope to provide limited services like curbside pick-up by the end of next week. It will probably be 4-6 weeks before we are able to provide in-person browsing and 3-6 months before we are fully open and providing all services. We’ll keep updating this blog post and our Facebook page with the latest information.

Why will it take so long to open?

The library had to be gutted – the flooring, walls, shelves, etc. all had to be disposed of.  We need to wait for the insurance companies to work through the claims, for the room to be put back together with new flooring, paint, shelves, etc., and then to move all of our books and materials back in. All of these steps take time. As frustrating as that can be, we are looking forward to having a refreshed space. 

I am scheduled to rent out the large room. Will I still be able to have my event there?

Unfortunately, the large event/meeting room will not be available for the next 4-6 weeks, possibly longer. All of our books, computers, and other library materials were moved into the large room so restoration crews can fix the damage to the library. Anyone with an upcoming reservation will be contacted in the next week or so. 

What about programs and events?

All library programs are cancelled until further notice. This includes the cookie decorating class, preschool storytime, toddler storytime, hands-on science, book group and writing group. We will let you know when programs will resume.

Flood?! What happened?

On Sunday, January 14, 2024, at approximately 9pm a sprinkler head in the library break room froze and water was released. The police and fire departments responded and got the sprinkler turned off, but there was already standing water in all of the library, the back storage office, and some of the small play room.

What was damaged?

Basically anything touching the floor of the library, the back storage room, and parts of the small play room were damaged. This includes all of the shelving, the desks, the tables, the wooden chairs, the carpet, some of the toys from the play room, and about 2 feet of dry wall. The entire break room (the small room behind the circulation desk) was drenched and everything in there was lost. 

How many books were damaged?

Thankfully, none of the books or materials from our collection were damaged! The bottom shelves sit 3-4″ off the ground and the water did not get that high. Unfortunately, some of our books for the book sale and the books on the sale shelf were damaged and thrown out. 

How can I help? What does the library need right now?

Thank you for your offer! Right now, we need everyone to keep their library materials at home and to have patience as we figure out how to move forward. We are hoping to have some version of a book sale or fundraiser in the near future. More information to come. As soon as we have a need, we’ll reach out! Thank you for all of your support!