Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Word or Two About the Library's Programs for Adults

Last night's program with CC Carole, "The Huntress" was a full house, with several people turned away for lack of space. At the risk of tooting my own horn, over the past two years, our adult programs have been attracting larger audiences. I'm happy to report this, but given the size of the Klumpp Room, the likelihood that programs will fill up fast is becoming greater.

The fire department has an occupancy rating for the room, but considering the tables, supply cabinets, AV equipment, etc. that have to be stored there, too, in reality, the room can't handle that number without overcrowding. We set our program limit at 45-50 so that everyone is comfortable and can see and hear the speaker. And let's not even talk about parking spaces. A couple of times, I've pushed it to the maximum occupancy, but there were a lot of complaints. I'd rather see a happy audience of 50 than an audience of 80 with 30 people complaining. Wouldn't you?

All of our program publicity includes the reminder that space is limited and registration is recommended. A phone number and email address are included. We hope that newspapers will print our press releases verbatim, but we're not responsible if they don't. Our posters and website also encourage registration. A list tells us how much food to buy (we always serve a snack) and how many chairs to set up. We'd do this no matter the size of our room. A list also prevents us from getting more people than we can seat. If we take your name and promise you a seat, you'll have one. We also hope you'll let us know if you can't come so we can give your place to another person. If the list fills up, as it did for "The Huntress," we'll take a limited waiting list and call if we have cancellations.

Here's some suggestions to help you get a seat in future adult programs:
  • Sign up for the adult program email list. You'll get a notice two weeks before a program and a reminder a week before. I currently send emails to over 300 people. Your privacy is completely protected.
  • Watch the local papers for program publicity. We always take a registration list even if it's not specifically stated in the paper. Sometimes press releases get edited. We also advertise by local cable, our outside sign, posters in the library, and our Library Link bi-monthly newsletter.
  • Check the library's website weekly. It's updated at least a couple of times a week, and often upcoming programs are listed there before they are publicized elsewhere.
  • If you register for a program and then find you can't attend, please let us know so someone else can take your place. If we have a waiting list, we will likely contact you a day or two before the date to confirm you are planning to attend.
  • Arrive on time. If a program's booked up and we get unregistered walk-ins, we will seat them in any open seats at the start of the program.

Planning programs is one of the best parts of my job. I'm glad so many people come and enjoy them. With your support, we will continue to bring you great programs that entertain, educate and enrich your life.

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