Community News

APL offering mobile hotspots

Other new programs under way

Mobile hotspot available at Atmore Public Library

News Staff Writer

Atmore Public Library is gearing up for an exciting September, with new offerings that address some of the needs of library patrons of all ages.
The upcoming month will feature the availability of new technology for children and adults, as well as the resumption of a popular children’s program and the addition of a “book club” for adults who might want to do more than just discuss the books they’ve read.
The most exciting new offering for adults is the lending of mobile hotspots for those who don’t have ready access to Wi-Fi service.
“This is geared to students and people who greatly need Wi-Fi,” APL Director Hope Lassiter said. “I’ve seen, in the two years I’ve been here, that there is a need for this. I feel like there is a digital gap in our area. We are trying to close that digital gap while maintaining our purpose: to connect people to knowledge.”
The mobile hotspots may be checked out by persons 18 years old and older for one week only, with no renewals. A $25 refundable deposit must be paid at the time the devices are checked out; a library card and photo ID are required to check them out; and each must remain in circulation at least 24 hours before it can be checked out again.
Service to the devices will be cancelled by library staff if they become overdue, and borrowers must sign a user agreement before checking one of the hotspots out for the first time.
There are other restrictions and conditions that apply to the borrowing of the hotspots, including that they must not be returned in the library’s outside book drop. Those interested may obtain more information on the borrowing and use of the devices from library staff members.
High-tech tutoring
While the mobile hotspots are for older library patrons, there is also a new technology offering for library patrons of most any age, especially those who need tutoring in a specific area or those trying to keep up with classroom studies, although a person must be age 18 or older, with a library card, to check the devices out.
Playaway Launchpads, devices that are pre-loaded with various apps and that don’t require a Wi-Fi connection, will become available in September. The age-appropriate applications include math and reading, as well as those based on the Alabama Science, Technology, Math and Science (STEM) program.
“We’re trying to get a lot of different apps for different age groups,” Lassiter said. “If we see a need or if the demand is there, we will get more.”
The lending period for the Launchpads is 14 days, only one device may be borrowed at the time, and they cannot be immediately renewed. For more information on restrictions and conditions of use, contact a library staff member.
Wee Ones returns
With the return of students to classes comes the return of the library’s popular Wee Ones Story Time program.
The program is for children from birth to school age and is held every Thursday at 10 a.m. throughout the school year, except holidays. Youngsters and their parents or guardians can come and read stories to program participants, participate in crafts projects and provide general stimulation of the children’s interest in reading.
“It’s for kids of all ages, but it’s geared to those that are pre-school aged,” Lassiter explained.
More than a book
Apul other September offering is a month-long reading program for adults that is more than just a book club. Participants will meet each Wednesday at 10 a.m.
“All during the month, we’ll give them a book to read, and they can pass it around,” Lassiter explained. “We’ll have programs for the first three weeks, and on the last Wednesday of the month, we’ll have a book discussion.”
The initial meeting (Sept. 5) will feature Sarah Bliss Wright of the Alabama Humanities Foundation, who will discuss the Mt. Ida Quilt Project.
The presentation includes the history behind the making of the quilts by two groups of rural Alabama women who were “connected by land but separated by three centuries,” as well as a look at the histories of the Mallory and Welch families and at the humorous side of the effort by busy 21st Century women who created the second quilt.
The September 12 program will feature a presentation on Perdido Vineyards, which since 1972 has produced grapes for a winery in Pensacola, and the September 19 meeting will feature Mallorie Beachy, who will present a class on succulents, plants that feature some parts that are thicker and fleshier than normal plants to retain water in arid climates or soil.
The club’s final session, September 26, will be reserved for discussion of the chosen book, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman.
“I think it will be fun,” Lassiter said. “I’ve tried to mix it up, not do the same things as we’ve done in the past.”
For more information on the library’s September offerings, call 368-5234 or drop by the library at 700 East Church Street.