Libraries Open for Remote Book Checkout

The Cary Regional Library is offering no-contact book pickup for its patrons.

On Monday, June 15, several Wake County library locations began offering no-contact pickup for checked-out books. In western Wake, the Books on the Go service is available at Cary Regional, Middle Creek Community and West Regional libraries.

“Patrons are very excited that the library is resuming some service—specifically book pick up,” said Liz Bartlett, Cary Regional Library Manager. “Almost all ask when we might be able to open again fully (for browsing, which is what they miss most). Everyone is cheerful and happy to have books again.”

Through the service, library patrons can place holds on books using the online catalog. Up to 30 items can be requested at once. Once the books have been gathered, staff will send an email notification, saying that the books are available for pickup. Included in the email will be a link to schedule a time to get the books.

Library staff will check out the requested items and place them on a table in the lobby or at the front of the library. When patrons arrive, a Books on the Go bag will be waiting, with their name on it – ready to be taken home. 

On Monday, the first day of the program, Cary Regional Library staff scheduled about 106 reservations for patrons to pick up books. That many appointments were also scheduled on Tuesday. On both days, staff fielded dozens of phone calls every hour from patrons asking about the pickup service.

“We so appreciate the community’s patience while their libraries have been closed, and we look forward to giving everyone access to the books they want to read,” said Ann Burlingame, deputy director of Wake County Public Libraries. “This is the first phase of making libraries accessible to our customers again, and this service will allow us to continue fulfilling our library mission to instill the love of reading in the residents of Wake County.”

This service is available 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. In addition to the western Wake locations, Books on the Go is available at the following libraries:

  • Cameron Village Regional Library
  • East Regional Library
  • North Regional Library
  • Northeast Regional Library
  • Southeast Regional Library

Checked-out books can also be returned at these locations. When books are returned, library staff will enforce at least a 72-hour delay before handling library materials or making them available for checkout. 

The eight locations offering the Books on the Go service are spread geographically throughout the county. The service isn’t offered at all Wake County libraries, according to the Wake County website, because 110 library employees were called up by the county’s Emergency Operations Center and are working as Contact Tracers in support of the County’s COVID-19 response. Remaining staff members are maintaining services at the open locations.



  • gretchen best says:

    We are so grateful to have books available from Cary Regional Library again!

  • Mary Fenton says:

    I don’t remember my pin and I can’t reset it online. Is there any way to order books on line without it?

    • Amber Keister says:

      I would call your library branch directly. You can reserve books that way, and library staff can help you reset your pin.

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