Libraries begin pick-up service, extend digital offerings amid closure

Cars park in dedicated spots Tuesday afternoon outside the Beaufort branch of Carteret County Public Library to pick up materials. (Contributed photo)

BEAUFORT — Carteret County public libraries have found new ways to deliver print and digital materials amid the novel coronavirus pandemic and subsequent branch closures.

The county libraries kicked off a curbside pickup program Monday to allow patrons to access print materials through the library. Carteret County Library Director Lesley Mason said the initiative is already off to a busy start.

“We hope to be able to slowly add services” as the state’s phased reopening continues, Ms. Mason said Tuesday afternoon. For now, all branches remain closed to the public.

To request parking lot pickup, library patrons can place a hold on materials online at or by phone with their branch. Upon arrival, patrons should park in a numbered spot for pickup, open the trunk to allow library staff to deposit the materials and call the branch with your library card number, parking space number, vehicle information and verbal confirmation of pickup. The card on hold must match the card being used to pick up materials.

In addition, branches are also mailing up to three print materials at a time to patrons who request the service. To have materials mailed to your address, call your branch.

Ms. Mason also noted the libraries are trying to expand digital offerings amid the pandemic, as well. The library system uses Overdrive to allow patrons to borrow digital books, audiobooks and materials, and beginning Wednesday, patrons will have access to the Hoopla streaming service through their library account.

After downloading the Hoopla app and creating an account using a library card, patrons can access audiobooks, movies, television series and music through Hoopla with three free checkouts per month, Ms. Mason said. To access Hoopla, download the app or visit

Wifi access remains available outside branch locations during business hours.

If you do not have a library card, you can apply for one online free of charge at


Contact Jackie Starkey at 252-726-7081, ext. 225; email; or follow on Twitter @jackieccnt.

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