SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — After many months of silence, the Santa Barbara Public Library is finally filled with a little noise.
On Tuesday, it reopened to the public, so lovers of literature could browse their beloved books.
Colin Emmerson will be starting 7th grade at La Colina Junior High School this fall and is thrilled to be back inside one of his favorite spots.
“It’s really exciting,” he said. “We haven’t been in here for so long, it’s kind of like just coming in here for the first time.”
For Emmerson, the library symbolizes a second home.
“I actually read extremely quickly,” he explained. “So I can burn through maybe an inch thick book in like three hours.”
The building is operating at 25% capacity, as masks are mandatory and library-goers are limited with 30 minutes to pick out an item.
Nevertheless, that’s not stopping some from taking advantage of all the library has to offer.
Molly Wetta, the library services manager, explained the enthusiasm she’s witnessed this week.
“Everybody has been really excited to have access to the full browsing experience of all of the stacks,” she said. “To see people in-person and really just to be able to enjoy the library.”
Santa Barbara resident Taylor Hall couldn’t wait to grab hard copies from bookshelfs.
“I just like ruminating in here and checking out different things and talking to the staff,” he said. “It’s pretty great to be back in.”
One thing to look forward to throughout the summer months is SBPL’s on the go mobile library branch.
“It’s a state-of-the-art outreach vehicle, that is equipped with both books as well as power and wifi,” Wetta said. “It allows us to bring any of our services through the community to meet people where they’re at and make it easier to use the library.”
The library will launch its new van during a summer reading kick-off event tomorrow from 2:00 - 3:30 PM at Alameda Park.
To find out when the Santa Barbara Public Library is open, you can visit its website.