BEAVERTON, OR (KPTV) - Like every other institution, public libraries have had to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic. In large part, they've done that by offering more online services.

The Beaverton City Library started to slowly reopen in January. People can now go in and browse for up to 30 minutes.

Katie Willard and her two sons were waiting at 10 a.m. Wednesday to go inside for their first visit since the library started letting readers back in.

The boys knew just what they wanted.

"I'm looking for books on different types of plants," said 10-year-old Wesley.

"I'm looking for rock books," 7-year-old Jude said.

Katie told FOX 12 that she appreciated that the library offered book pickups during the pandemic, but nothing takes the place of actually picking out a book yourself.

"It's important for them to browse and to find things that they are interested in, and not just have me try to pick something online and get it reserved and then if they don’t like it we’re back to square one," Katie said.

Beaverton City Library's storytime videos a big hit among children during the pandemic

(Courtesy: Beaverton City Library)

For younger children, the library's YouTube channel has been a pandemic hit. Before COVID-19, a handful watched the videos. Now the channel has hundreds of followers.

When the library closed in March 2020 to visitors, staff cranked out a series of children's videos in just two days to take the place of in-person storytime.

"We couldn't do storytime and families were just looking for something to do with their kids," said Jennifer Wolf, Children's Librarian.

The librarians have found other ways of using their YouTube channel to introduce or re-introduce the library to young readers.

There's Zoom storytime as well and the library plans to keep that up even when it fully reopens, so children can still be read to even if their families can't bring them to the library.

"We'll still have an option especially for families with very young children they haven’t been vaccinated yet. They’ll still want to come to storytime," Wolf said.

For more information about current services that Beaverton City Library offers, visit www.beavertonlibrary.org.

Copyright 2021 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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