Library checks out one millionth book

Don Adamek, an avid library patron, check out books Friday afternoon.

The Mesa County Library celebrated its annual milestone this month by checking out the one millionth book to a customer on Oct. 12.

It’s hard to pinpoint who that customer was, but the milestone was reached one month earlier than usual, showing that library patronage has increased significantly this year.

“We’re up by 13 percent,” said Shana Wade, public services director for the library, “That’s a lot when you’re talking about a million items.”

Wade said the increase was due to a number of factors including the increased growth of books and services available in all of its branches.

“It’s also due to the economy,” said Eve Tallman, library director, “People realize that they are not having to pull their wallets out.”

Tallman said an estimated 65,000 residents in Mesa County were library card holders, which is equal to about half of the county’s population.

The main branch of the library alone serves nearly 2,000 people per day.

Reaching the million mark so early in the year is a large motivator for library staff to continue to serve as many customers as possible. Wade said many of the staff are taking guesses at how many items will be checked out to cardholders by the end of the year.

“We are hoping for 1.5 million but it will probably be more like 1.3,” she said.

“It just shows the value that the library has to the community,” Tallman said.

This year, the library staff has focused on reaching some of the people who might not be traditional card holders, such as new retirees and young adults.

The expanded services include new books and movies, free audio books for download, E-books, more interaction with local businesses and a variety of new programs and clubs.

“We just keep reaching out the community and are supporting them in any way we can,” Wade said.

For more information about the Mesa County Library, visit


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