Frequently Asked Questions

How many books/items are in your collection? -  We have over 17,000 physical volumes/items at the library, and thousands more available as e-books and e-audio downloads. 

Do you have computers for public use? - Yes, we have five public-access computers. Computers are free to use, but there is a 1-hour per person, per day limit on the library's computers. Patrons can print from the computers for a fee.

Can I bring my own computer/tablet to work in the library? - Of course!  You're welcome to bring in your personal device.  There are multiple areas to sit and use your computer/tablet, and our wi-fi is free and available during library and daytime hours (hours may vary by season, call to inquire).  We do turn off our wi-fi at night to prevent loitering in the parking area and grounds out of courtesy to our neighbors.

I'm getting older, and my vision isn't what it used to be.  How can I keep reading? - You're in luck!  You have a few options available.  Many of our readers enjoy Large Print materials, and we have many to choose from!  If you have a tablet or e-reader, downloaded books can be read by increasing the font size until you can read it clearly. Other patrons prefer audiobooks, either on CD or downloaded and played from a tablet or phone.  If your sight is deteriorating beyond simple age-related issues, please contact the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped for other adaptive devices and services.

I'm traveling from out of town, and my phone directed me to somewhere other than the library...  - Because Marcus' house/business numbers have both a North and South on the same street, it's likely your phone defaulted and you're where 106 S. Locust is rather than 106 N. Locust.  Come north a block or two and you'll see a red one-story building with a stone front.  If you get to the post office, come a block south.  If you're at the park/pool, come a block north.

What if I don't want my children checking out certain materials? - As a parent, it's within your rights to want to restrict what your children read or view.  However, the library staff cannot and will not limit access to anyone, even children.  Unlike a school, the library staff do not act 'in loco parentis' and are not legally able or allowed to restrict access to anyone or to act as a caretaker.  If you're concerned about what your kids are reading, viewing, or checking out of the library, attend the library with them or screen their materials when they get home. And as always, all parents should be actively involved in what their children are accessing and viewing online.

Does the library close due to weather? - Occasionally.  Our current policy is to close for Winter Weather when the MMCRU school system does. So, if the school dismisses early or cancels due to snow,  the library will be closed.  This is for patron safety as well as to allow city staff to plow and scoop the parking area and sidewalks.  During summer weather, the library will remain open unless tornadic weather is imminent.  In this event, library staff will try to send patrons home.  If the library is empty, staff will close the library to seek shelter until the weather event has passed.  If the library must remain open, the bathrooms will be used as a tornado shelter. Please speak with your children about what to do in the event of a summer storm, and make sure they have somewhere safe to go. As always, closings/openings may be at the discretion of the library director or staff on-duty. Please call the library to ascertain whether we are open before you make a special trip during inclement weather.

Is there a charge to attend a library program? - No.  None of the programs at the library have an admissions fee.  Occasionally presenters may bring books or materials to sell after their program, etc. but no program ever requires a fee to attend nor is any purchase required.

I have a bunch of old books at home.  Can I donate them to the library? Maybe. We have very limited space so don't have room for a lot of donated items.  However, books that are current or less than 3 years old and in good condition may be donated to the library with director permission.  All donated items become property of the library and may be added to the collection, sold, or disposed of according to the Acquisitions Policy. We cannot accept more than a few books at a time, nor any items that are dirty, smell of smoke or animals, contain markings or writings, or encyclopedias, textbooks, almanacs, etc. 

I have a program idea.  Do you take suggestions?  Sure! If you would like to present a program, attended a program elsewhere that you think would go well here, or would like to see a certain presenter or type of program or class at the library, feel free to let the library staff know!  We'll look into it and see what we can do.