With cheers from staff and residents alike, the Stevenson Ranch Library joined other libraries across Los Angeles County in reopening its doors to the public Monday.
“It’s wonderful,” said Arpine Eloyan, community library manager, who noted that all the library staff unconsciously chose to wear bright colors for the celebratory day. “Everybody is so happy.”
Throughout last year’s closure, Eloyan said the library received around 100 calls daily, and she heard from countless customers how much they missed the library.
“‘We never appreciated it as much as we should,’” she recalled callers telling her. “It’s just nice for them to realize we’re here. We’re here to help them.”
While the library is unable to resume in-house programming just yet due to public health restrictions, it will continue its virtual programs and sidewalk services in the meantime, Eloyan said.
The library has, however, reopened for in-person browsing, public computer use of up to one hour per customer, printing, holds pickup and free Wi-Fi.
As Valencia resident Heather Nguyen waited for the library to reopen, she expressed her excitement, as well.
“I never realized how much I relied on the library as a place to just get away,” Nguyen said, adding that as a student, she often found herself at the library studying or even just reading. “It’s my comfort zone and really just allows me to focus on my tasks.”
County libraries have been cleared to reopen at 75% capacity, while also requiring masking and maintaining 6 feet of physical distance for customers, among other safety protocols.
And though masked, Catherine Bell and her three young boys entered the library with smiles on their faces.
“We could not wait,” Bell said, as her sons dragged her to the children’s section. “It was on our schedule: eleven o’clock on Monday, head to the library. We’ve been using the sidewalk service all year, but there’s nothing like actually coming and getting to browse, and they could not wait.”
The Stevenson Ranch Library, located at 25950 The Old Road, is open Monday and Wednesday through Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Tuesday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, visit lacountylibrary.org/stevenson-ranch-library or call 661-255-2707.