On the first Sunday the larger full-service branches of the Metropolitan Library System were open, it came as a surprise to some longtime patrons.
Village Library Manager LaVetta Dent said customers weren’t exactly lining up at the door the first week.
“The first day, we didn’t have anyone walk in the door the first 20 minutes we were open,” Dent said. “Then someone came in, and three or four people followed them. They were out in the parking lot using the Wi-Fi and didn’t know we were actually open.”
Libraries began opening Sundays on May 13, the first time the system had done so in its existence. Hours are 1 to 6 p.m. Smaller extension branches are not open Sundays.
Capitol Hill manager Jana Hausburg said the goal of having branches open Sundays was to better serve visitors. After a slow start, the number of visitors has been picking up.
“That first day it was very quiet,” she said. “It has picked up since then. Our young people are starting to come in, and we’re seeing more people coming in after church. People seem to be making it a part of their weekend plans now.”
Dent said the first Sunday the Village branch was open, just 12 items were checked out. But while that number has been growing each week, she expects even more visitors as students go back to school this month.
“It gives students that much more time do whatever they need to do,” Dent said. “We also have a lot of people who come in that don’t have computers who are looking for jobs online or are filling job applications out online.”
Hausburg said there are currently no plans to add Sunday programs to the system’s menu of activities but that could change. She said there has been some interest in computer classes for seniors that could be held on Sundays.
Metropolitan Library System branches open 1 to 6 p.m. Sundays:
•Belle Isle, 5501 N Villa.
•Bethany Library, 3510 N Mueller.
•Capitol Hill, 334 SW 26.
•Choctaw Library, 2525 Muzzy Ave.
•Del City Library, 4509 SE 15.
•Downtown Library, 300 Park Ave.
•Edmond Library, 10 S Boulevard.
•Midwest City Library, 8143 E Reno.
•Northwest Library, 5600 NW 122.
•Ralph Ellison Library, 2000 NE 23.
•Southern Oaks Library, 2914 SW 59.
•Village Library, 10307 N Pennsylvania.
•Warr Acres Library, 5901 NW 63.