The CEO's Corner - Welcome 2024!
With our new year just a few days old, I’d like to share some highlights from this past year at Burlington Public Library. We wouldn’t be the library we are without your ongoing use and support, and we’re deeply grateful to everyone who visits the library, in person or online, as part of your routine.
So, how did you use your public library in 2023? Here’s a quick look!
How You Used Your Library in 2023
BPL members borrowed over whopping 1,225,000 books in 2023! One family of eager readers saved over $27,000 by using the library in 2023! You can view your estimated annual savings at the bottom of your printed receipt when you check out books. We added this feature to our receipts this year and it has been a great way for customers to see what they are saving by using their library.
The most popular non-book items borrowed were MiFi Hotspots, Chromebooks, and iPads. When introduced in June, jigsaw puzzles were a huge and immediate hit with library members. This new collection will grow again in early 2024. Watch the shelves!
This year’s most popular event was Burlington Literary Festival’s riveting evening with R.H. Thomson, author of By the Ghost Light. And thousands of kids also came to the library to shake their sillies out at 1,367 storytimes this year—with some regularly attracting crowds of 80-plus children and their grown-ups!
Burlington Public Library's Commitment to Accessibility
The library belongs to everyone in our community, and we are committed to making our services and collections accessible to all. With that in mind, we worked with various partners to launch new offerings this year.
Visitors to the library can now pick up sensory kits to use in any of our branches. These were developed in collaboration with Autism Ontario.
We also expanded our collection of supportive reading materials to include decodable books geared to people with dyslexia, and WonderBooks and Vox Books that read aloud while you turn the pages.
Our staff are ready to welcome and support you no matter your needs—our 2023 Staff Development Day centred on training all staff to provide accessibility support and resources.
New Library Services Launched in 2023
What else were we up to? We opened our new Reading Garden at Central Branch where you can enjoy a good book in the fresh air during warmer months. Your local history is now just a click away with the Burlington Digital Archive—an online trove of maps, photos, and historical documents. This digital portal went live in the fall thanks to the incredible work of our Digital Resources & Collections team. And, for Burlington readers looking for a good book recommendation—and we know there are lots of you—give Handpicked For You a try. We launched this service to give customers personalized picks from our expert library staff.
It was an outstanding year for Burlington Public Library, and we couldn’t have done it without the continued enthusiastic support of our community and our dedicated and talented staff, who work hard to deliver the best library service possible every day. Thank you for making BPL part of your story in 2023.
We look forward to seeing you at the library in 2024! To get a jump start on your reading list for the new year, check out my favourite reads of 2023.