The secret is out!
In Consumer Reports’ “101 secrets from our experts,” the magazine notes that “the public library is a resource many people overlook.
“Libraries subscribe to databases you undoubtedly don’t, and librarians can find information not easily available with a Google search or to a person without library-science training.”
Your library card has tremendous value beyond your ability to check out books, movies or other materials. With a library card, you have a virtual library at your fingertips, 24 hours a day, from home, work or wherever you have Internet access. The La Grange Park Library website, like many library sites today, has dozens of online resources available to library cardholders. Just go to our site, select Online Resources and plug in your library card number, and you can search ancestry databases, find auto-repair information, read international newspapers or learn a foreign language, among other great options. Our newest resource is Tutor.com. From 3 to 10 p.m. every day, elementary through high school students can connect with a trained tutor.
The good news is that people are beginning to learn more about our virtual library. This past year, the La Grange Park Library had 24,668 unique visitors to its website. The most popular page was our Online Resources section.
Even without going online, a call to our reference staff can give you access to library databases through trained librarians. One of our patrons who owns a home-based business recently called our reference desk when she couldn’t find the research she needed for a client online. Within an hour, our staff provided her with academic journal articles that weren’t available through the free Internet.
You can find the portal to dozens of free online resources at www.lplibrary.org/online-resources.
Dixie Conkis is the director of the La Grange Park Public Library