Each year the Cherokee Public Library submits a report to the State Library of Iowa containing a variety of statistics and information. No matter how much I grumble about putting it together, it does give us a picture of what's been happening at the library. The numbers I am about to mention are for the months of July 2009-June 2010.
During that twelve month period we checked out 63,999 items to our patrons. Our top circulation was adult books at 27,201 mostly in the fiction genre. It was followed by the combination of DVD and VHS movies at 18,574. (Since we only own 2,476 movies, that statistic is quite impressive!) Children's books were third at 10,397.
Of items checked out 35,218 went to patrons who live in the city limits of Cherokee. Residents of other towns in the county checked out 3,297 things. Patrons who live in the rural area of Cherokee County were responsible for 12,024 checkouts. Other checkouts went to people living outside the county. Sutherland & Calumet lead the way with 1,256 items. Holstein and Paullina followed with around 650 each. I wonder if these numbers would reflect shopping patterns in town?
We have 3,699 registered borrowers with 397 added in this time period. There were 200 programs for children with an attendance of 3,026. Adult programs had an attendance of 915 for 133 events. We estimate that we had a door count of around 68,000 and a weekly average of 425 people using our computers.
Lots of numbers to digest but they only tell part of the story. What they don't tell is the number of times we've helped someone on a computer or with a question. They don't tell about the trips we've made to deliver books to shut-ins or the time we've spent calling overdues. They don't reflect the number of items such as newspapers that are read inside the building, the number of prints made on our copier and computers, the number of faxes sent out for people or the number of toilet paper rolls used in year's time.
We are proud of the service we provide and feel that it goes beyond the numbers reported to the State Library. We have a lovely facility, a good staff and a collection that reflects the needs of the community. And in 2011 we will be looking for additional ways (stay tuned for information in the spring about downloadable ebooks) to please our patrons.
The library will be closed Friday, December 24, Saturday, December 25 and Saturday, January 1. Weather permitting, normal hours will be observed on all other days through the holiday season. Please stay warm and travel safely.