LIBRARY NOTES – February 2024

By Pamela West-Finkle

Report to the Community

February is final report time at the library—the joyous time of year in which I have the esteemed opportunity to complete a fifty page report to New York State about our library. If you come into the library and I am not at the circulation desk, it is because I am up to my elbows in statistics.

February is also the time I get to share our 2023 numbers with the Andes Community. We had 2,995 adults and 325 children physically come to use the library’s services. Our programs attracted 522 adults and 250 children; 147 adults and 151 babies and toddlers attended our weekly song and story times, and 27 individuals received technology assistance. With the added board member meetings and Gazette operations, our total number of people for the year was 4,546 visits to the library.

Internally, we physically circulated 229 adult non-fiction books, 72 Juvenile nonfiction books, 925 fiction books and 230 juvenile fiction books.  We checked out twelve audio books, 8 magazines, 816 movies, and our patrons ordered 570 books through inter-library loans.  We, in turn, provided 2,051 of our books, audio books, and movies to patrons at other libraries. That means that we checked out and checked in 4,901 items in 2023.

Nearly 200 people used our public patron computers, and hundreds of people access our library Wi-Fi every year, which is available for free 24/7 in the parking lot, on the porch, and the back deck/gazebo.

The most notable for us, of course, is the number of books we are providing to other libraries, which is about 2,000 items more than we did prior to going online in 2022. Jesslyn, Tami and I go on our daily treasure hunt for books and movies—most of which we can find.

Since some items have been misplaced it is very important that you allow us to shelve any items you have taken off of the shelf, but decided to put back.  There is a roller cart behind the circulation desk, and you are welcome to drop off items in need of re-shelving.  All returns, however, should be given to us directly at the circulation desk for processing.

To Mask or Not to Mask? That is the question….

If you’ve been to the library recently, you may have noticed that there is a “Masks Recommended” sign on the front door and that the staff has mostly been wearing masks over the last few weeks. This is because we all became quite ill with various viruses being circulated.  We are all, thankfully, on the mend now, but may continue to wear masks until the post-holiday outbreaks subside.  We do have masks available should you wish to don one as well when you come to the library.

If you are ill, we ask that you please stay home.  We are happy to provide a porch pickup service and if you have had Covid, the Flu, RSV, or the stomach bug/Nanovirus while handling our library materials, please hold on to them for a little while longer and/or put them in a plastic bag and notify us that they should be quarantined for a few days.

Song & Story Time – Tuesdays at 3:30 pm

Although I’ve had to cancel a few due to illness, I wanted to remind parents and grandparents that I provide a free early childhood music, movement, and story time at the Andes Library on Tuesday afternoons at 3:30 pm. It’s always more fun when we have a room full of friends, so please bring the little ones to join us.  Babies and young toddlers are especially welcome.  We spend less time reading stories than we do singing, dancing, and playing percussion instruments.

If you’d like to join us during the Winter months, please call or email with your contact information so that you can be notified in case of inclement weather or illness cancellation.  We also post updates on our Andes Public Library Facebook page. 845-676-3333 or

Note to the community:  if you’re looking for a quiet place to work or meet, Tuesdays from 3:30 to 4:30 is not the best time.  If you happen to be here during that time, you are welcome to use our upstairs space.

We have all the best new books for you!

On this month’s new book list, you’ll notice that we have several new titles that were recommended books in the New York Times Top 20 New Books of 2023.  We try to make a habit of ordering whatever we don’t have when the book list comes out.

Recently, you may have noticed that our new book list contains a larger selection than we have in recent years.  First, I would like to thank the patrons and community members who have been donating such lovely brand new books.  These are books by new and diverse authors writing about very contemporary subjects.  One thing that I might ask is that if you have a newly published book that you are donating, please put those inside of the library’s return drop box.  If we decide to not include them in our collection, we will most likely put them in the hardcover book sale upstairs.

The rest of our new acquisitions have been a wonderful effort by former librarian and current Board of Trustees member, Linda Lederman.  Every month, she dutifully picks from our Pre-Published lists, and provides me a list of other books to order from Amazon.  In addition, Tami Jaegel and I look into a few other new authors and special nonfiction books.

As many of you know, whatever the Four County Library system does not have, we are happy to special order for you, so if you cannot find what you want on or on our shelves, please do not be afraid to ask.  It may take a few weeks, but most times we can accommodate your order and then make it available to all of the patrons in the Four County System once it is catalogued.

Stay warm!~