Training in telephone customer service includes instilling the habit of smiling. Over the years I’ve read so many explanations.

Thanks to our Ebscohost online database, I’ve even found “12 Tips on Proper Phone Etiquette” in the Dec. 25, 2017,l issue of everyone’s favorite magazine Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration News.

While our fantastic staff greets you these days at curbside with our masks, watch out for those smiling eyes and thanks so much for smiling back. We are so appreciative of the small gestures of support curbside and other-side. We are ready, willing and able to open up our building as soon as possible, and we understand and support Grand Island Mayor Roger Steele as he determines reopening plans in keeping with upcoming Directed Health Measures.

So while we have the day off today, tomorrow morning we’ll be back at it with plenty of smiles, taking bags of books and other library materials out to your vehicle. We are serving you in special and unexpected ways these days until we get back to a new normal. In the meantime, as French air conditioning experts would say, now is a good time to chill, smile and vive la différence.

I wonder what “Plan B” sounds like in French. For all you avid shelf walkers out there, browsing through our online catalog may be Plan B but it is a great way to get some library materials into your hands. Go to to explore authors, subjects and titles, oh my, to reserve materials online.

If you need some reader’s advisory help, give us a call at (308) 385-5333 or email You can also go to our library webpage at and click on Digital Library to get to Novelist for excellent reading suggestions.

We can’t drive you to curbside but we can do some of the book-selection driving for you with what we call themed book bundles. Or if you have a portable device and have never checked out one of our online books, we can get you started with Overdrive, Rbdigital, Hoopla and more.

And maybe you’ve never reserved a book online. Give us a call and we’ll walk you through logging onto your online catalog account with your card number and PIN. We’ll take you step by step through the process all the way through curbside and book return.

As we learn how to execute our Plan B, we encourage you to make your own Public Library Plan B for the next little while. Here’s what I’m calling one energized patron’s Plan B PIN plan:

”You guys are amazing, I already called the library and I now have a PIN. I am currently hearing an ebook from hoopla thanks to you guys!!! This is amazing, and I don’t have to pay a penny. THANK YOU!”

Returning materials to the library also involves Plan B these days. We now have enough experience with our Wednesday-only book return days that we’ve decided our north side return will be open two days this week, Wednesday and Saturday. We’re still working on a schedule beyond this week so stay tuned.

Our Plan B virtual Summer Reading Program is moving right along at Monday through Wednesday programs are at 10:30 a.m. Tomorrow we have “Crane River Theatre Presents:L School House Rocks Page to Stage,” followed by Baby/Toddler and Preschool Lapsits on Tuesday, and Stories and Crafts Summer Reading Enrichment Club on Wednesday. Thursday and Friday programs are broadcast at 2:00 p.m., including Big Kids Program on Thursday and Tween/Teen Program on Friday.

Don’t forget to register and log your summer reading at And don’t forget to chill, smile and vive la Plan B différence!

Steve Fosselman is the director of the Grand Island Public Library. Email him at

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