Vineyard Haven Public Library, Martha's Vineyard
200 Main Street, Vineyard Haven, MA. 02568
Vineyard Haven Public Library

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Contactless Hold Pickup at Vineyard Haven Library

Martha’s Vineyard public libraries are committed to the health and safety of our entire community. We have worked closely together with local Boards of Health, and following local and professional guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19, to develop an island-wide plan to resume library services in phases. At this time, library buildings will remain closed to the public, and all in-person public programs and meetings are suspended until further notice.

While we are unable to welcome you into the library in person, we are happy to be able to safely provide you with books and other library materials! Thank you for your patience and understanding as we adjust library services to serve you safely as conditions allow.

How does Contactless Holds Pickup Work?

Contactless pickup of books, movies, CDs, magazines, and other library materials is available Monday through Saturday from Noon to 5pm, and until 6pm on Thursdays. Items must be requested in advance. We cannot fill walk-up requests at this time, but we will do our best to fill same day holds placed by 2pm.

Placing Holds

Placing holds is as easy as it’s ever been! There are four fast and easy ways to order library materials:

  • Browse, search, and place holds online through the CLAMS catalog
  • Download and use the new Capira CLAMS app on your mobile device (Google Play, Apple App Store)
  • Call (508) 696-4210 Monday through Saturday between 10 am and 5 pm to speak with a librarian who will help you select available books or place holds.
  • Email [email protected] with your request. Make sure you include your full name and/or library card number.

When you call or email us, you can request specific titles, or ask us to recommend titles for you. You can also request reading recommendations using our online form.

You can also join our "Standing Order" program to automatically order forthcoming books from your favorite popular authors. Just fill out the online form and library staff will add you to the advance hold list for any future books by the authors you select. Sign up for Standing Orders here:

All requests will be placed as holds on your patron account, and we will contact you to arrange for pickup when your items are ready to be picked up. this will enable us to fill requests in the order in which they are received.

Available Materials

We can only pull library materials that you’ve put on hold in advance. We cannot fill walk-up requests at this time, but we will do our best to fill same day holds placed by 2pm.

Statewide delivery between libraries has now resumed, so library cardholders can again request items from any CLAMS library for local pickup in Vineyard Haven. Delivery is operating on a reduced schedule and items are subject to a quarantine period, and it may take up to two weeks for requested material to arrive.

If you need something immediately that is available at another island library, you may wish to make arrangements to pick up at the library where the item is available. All island libraries now offer contactless pickup services.

Out of network loans through the Commonwealth Catalog are expected to resume on September 21st, 2020.

If you would like to recommend that the library purchase an item not in our collection, use the form available here to suggest a purchase.

Hold Notification & Pickup

When your hold is ready, we will contact you to set up a day and time for pick up at the library so that we can prepare your hold prior to your arrival. Pickup times are available from Noon-5pm Monday through Saturday, and until 6pm on Thursday.

Please arrive at the library within the time window assigned to you, and be prepared to show your library card or photo ID.

Patrons must wear masks and maintain social distance of at least six feet when visiting library property, and should not pick up or return items when feeling unwell. Library staff will be happy to assist by rescheduling pickup of requested items when you are feeling better.

Hold pickup location is within the entry vestibule at our main entrance on Main Street. Only one patron at a time will be allowed in the entry vestibule. Please wait in the designated area on the sidewalk until other patrons have completed pickup.

When you enter the pickup area you will find your requested items checked out and waiting for you in a bag marked with the first 4 letters of your last name and last 4 digits of your library card number. Bags will be on carts, in alphabetical order by last name.

If you are physically unable to walk to the library’s entrance, please bring or send someone who can do it for you. If you send someone else to pick up your holds, you must notify the library prior to their arrival.

We miss seeing and catching up with you, but staff will not be able to speak with you face to face during contactless pickup. If you have a question during pickup please step outside the entry vestibule and call us at (508) 696-4210, or use the doorbell to the right of the exit door.

Returning Library Materials

Items may only be returned at our curbside book drop, the book return slots at the entryway will remain closed. Please do not return library materials in the hold pickup area. If you have electronic equipment that can't be safely placed in the book return, please contact us to let us know when you would like to return the item to library staff.

Returned items will be quarantined for up to one week before being checked in, so there will be a delay between the date of return and when the item is removed from your CLAMS account. Martha’s Vineyard libraries are always fine free, and no late charges will accrue.

The library is unable to accept any book donations at this time. Please do not place any donated items in the book return.

"Safer at Home" Services

The Center for Disease Control has indicated that older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. View the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on People Who Need Extra Precautions:

If you believe you are in this category, you may contact the library to designate a family member or friend to pick up materials on your behalf. Please contact us at (508) 696-4210 to update your account to allow someone to pick up your items.

If you do not have someone who can pick up materials for you, the library will be providing limited, temporary home delivery services. Contact the Library Director at (508) 696-4210 or email [email protected] for more information.

For library patrons who may continue to feel safer staying home, all libraries will continue to offer you digital materials, services, programs and support.

Digital Library offerings include downloadable eBooks and eAudiobooks from Overdrive, streaming video from Kanopy, Creativebug, and RBDigital, and additional resources such as Hoopla, available to all Massachusetts residents from the Boston Public Library. Library staff will be happy to assist you in getting started with these services.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know my hold items are ready for pickup?

We will call or email you to schedule pick up when your items are ready.

To support social distancing efforts, the library is operating with limited staff. Wait times for holds placed online are currently longer than usual. Thanks for your patience.

Do I need a library card?

Yes, patrons must have a CLAMS card to use hold pickup. If you do not have a regular library card, we can create one for you over the phone and arrange pickup. Call the library at 508-696-4210.

Patrons can apply for an eCard for instant access to our Overdrive eBook collection, but please note that temporary eCards can only be used for online services.

What if I have mobility issues and cannot leave my vehicle?

If a patron experiences mobility issues, we can provide an accommodation such as placing bagged items on the hood or in the trunk of your vehicle. Please request this when you call.

What materials are available for pickup?

All media materials currently on the shelf are available, including books, magazines, audiobooks on CD, DVDs, and Blu-Rays. Some items such as electronic equipment and toys are not currently available.

Can you look for specific items or provide reading suggestions?

Yes! Call us at 508-696-4211 or email [email protected] for reading suggestions. You can also request reading recommendations using our online form.

What if I have fines or I’m over the checkout limit?

We no longer charge late fines, however replacement fees for lost books cannot be waived. Patrons who have been billed for lost items may still use the Overdrive eBook collection during pandemic closure, and can contact the library to make arrangements to restore access to physical materials.

If you are over the checkout limit, please call us to see if we can make accommodations.

Can I place a hold via telephone?

Yes, please call 508-696-4210 to place your requests. If we are unable to answer the phone, please leave a detailed message including a callback number.

What are you doing to protect the safety of patrons and library staff?

The contactless pickup model we are using provides maximum social distancing for the safety of our patrons and our staff. Staff will wear cloth face coverings and clean hands frequently, in accordance with the town’s workplace safety policy and CDC guidelines.

All physical materials will be quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours prior to being returned to the collection to be reshelved or circulated to other patrons. Carts used for pickup items will be routinely sanitized.

Patrons and staff should not approach one another and respect the need for social distancing. This may feel uncomfortable, but is necessary to provide a safe, contactless pickup service. If you notice patrons in the pickup area, please remain in your vehicle or at the designated waiting area on the sidewalk until the previous patron has departed the area.

Why are you using bags for pickup items?

Bags are a temporary measure to protect patron privacy, protect physical materials, and limit unnecessary contact. Bags help separate materials to avoid the need to sort through items.

More Questions?

We understand that things are changing from week to week, so we’re keeping you informed through our website and Facebook page. To recieve regular updates on library services and programs, sign up for our email newsletter.

Still have questions? We’re always here to help! Please call us at 508-696-4211 or email [email protected] with your inquiries or special requests.

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The Vineyard Haven Public Library
200 Main Street, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568
Phone: 508.696.4210 & Email: [email protected]
Library Building is temporarily closed to the public. Library staff are available by phone or email Monday - Saturday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm.

Contactless pickup is available by advance request Monday through Saturday from Noon to 5:00 pm, and until 6:00 pm Thursdays.

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