Harbin Memorial library set to reopen Jan. 14


It’s been a long time coming, but Muhlenberg County Public Libraries is finally ready to unveil the new Harbin Memorial library in Greenville.

For the past two and a half years, Muhlenberg County Public Libraries has been working on major renovations to the building that houses Harbin Memorial. The library had been experiencing structural and space issues before renovations began, forcing the library to do something to alleviate the problems. The new building should be a more secure and spacious solution that will benefit the community for years to come.

Library director Janet Harris said, “We are so excited about what we’ve done with the building. We can’t wait for everyone to come see it!

The library will host an open house this coming Friday, Jan. 11, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and will reopen to the public with regular business hours on Monday morning at 8:30 a.m. Light refreshments will be provided during the open house, and there will be a ribbon-cutting at 4 p.m. No library services, such as item checkout or computer use, will be available during the open house, Harris said, but it will give everyone a chance to walk through the much-changed building and see all the improvements.

Harbin Memorial is still located in the same building at 117 South Main Street in Greenville, but the building received a face-lift inside and out. Some interior walls were also removed to create more space; the library expanded into the building next door that previously housed the library’s History and Genealogy Annex. The Annex is relocating to the also newly renovated lower level of Thistle Cottage and will open there soon.

The library has also made technological improvements to streamline services and allow staff more time to focus on providing new services and events to the community. The library installed self-service checkout kiosks for patrons who want to get in and out more quickly without having to wait in line, but Harris noted that librarians will still be available to help patrons who need or want assistance. “We understand that changes like these can take some time to get used to, but we think it will be a huge improvement in the end,” she said. “Once you’ve done it a time or two, the self-checkout system is very easy and quick to use.

“We will, of course, still be on hand if we are needed, but we wanted to give patrons more options.”

A self-service pay machine is also available for patrons who want to print or copy documents, eliminating the need to wait in line at the desk to pay for these services.

Harris stressed that even though more library resources have a self-service option now, no changes are being made to the library staff. “We’re still going to be here!” she said. “If you need us, please don’t hesitate to ask. And when we aren’t assisting patrons, we will be working to improve and expand the services we have available.”
These improvements have already been implemented at the Central City library.

Once reopen to the public, Harbin Memorial library will operate with regular business hours of Mon.-Fri. 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. (open until 6 p.m. on Thursdays) and Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

For more information about the newly renovated Harbin Memorial library or any other questions about the library’s services, contact the library at 270-338-4760.

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