Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the Libraries

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Library Service Updates as of June 25, 2020

Holds pick up
Holds pickup services are available at both library locations by appointment only.

When you are notified of holds waiting for you, schedule an appointment at your branch:

For Cedar Mill Library, go to https://bit.ly/CMLholds or call (503) 644-0043

For Bethany Library, go to https://bit.ly/CMLBholds or call (503) 617-7323

Read more about how it works in the Holds Service FAQ

Curbside Pickup Hours

Cedar Mill Library

M – Sa 10am – 1pm
T, W &  F 3pm – 6 pm
Closed Sunday

Bethany Library

T –Sa 10am – 1pm
T, W & F 3pm – 6pm
Closed Sunday and Monday

Returns

Book drops continue to be closed. Returns are accepted during curbside service hours. No appointment necessary.

Message  from Peter Leonard, Executive Director, updated June 22, 2020

Dear Friends,

Holds service turned on. Beginning June 22, users may place holds for library items at wccls.org. The holds system through our county is complex and involves multiple libraries and a centralized courier system. Since libraries are at different stages of reopening and all returns must be quarantined for 72 hours, delivery will be slower than it was before the pandemic. The automatic holds notification system will not be turned on until most libraries reach a common service level. Each library will be contacting their borrowers when holds are available and arrange the pickup process. Libraries will first focus on fulfilling holds for their users from their own local collections. This initial process is not as robust as our users experienced in the past, but a measured approach at this time keeps the system sustainable.

Your libraries set up safety protocols for staff to work in the building. Physical distancing, mask wearing, work team scheduling, enhanced cleaning and quarantining are all part of the new systems put into place. New books that were ordered in March were delivered and are now being processed.

A new system for contactless pickup. We are using an appointment model because we can serve many more users than the “call a number when you arrive” model that may be used by other businesses. During this first stage of offering in-person services, in-library use will not be available. Libraries are not allowed to offer in-library services until Phase 2 of the Governor’s reopening plan. Cedar Mill and Bethany are still devising plans for limited in-library use, but rollout will only happen if it can be done safely without endangering users or staff.

We will not be opening our bookdrops at this time. All items are checked out through the end of July and we encourage our users to continue caring for library materials at home. All materials that are returned must be quarantined for 72 hours, so slowing the pace of returns will keep the system from breaking. With 80,000 items currently in our users’ homes, accepting returns over a longer period of time is manageable. If they all arrive in a few days we simply do not have enough storage capacity to hold them for quarantine. This quantity of books would require 1.4 miles of shelving to hold them! We know many items will be returned, but keeping them a bit longer will help.

Thanks for your patience as we restore services. We miss you and look forward to seeing you again (with masks, outside and at a distance).

Please bookmark this page and check back for updates, sign up for our weekly e-news or follow us on social media to learn when services will be available and how to access them.

Your library, anytime!

Watch movies with Kanopy, read books and audiobooks with Overdrive, read the newspaper and more from any internet connection — access your library from anywhere. Contact us by email or phone: We’re happy to help.

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter For Updates

Library Service Updates FAQ

When you receive notice that holds are available for you to pickup, request an appointment as described below. Please make an appointment only if your holds are ready, or your appointment will be canceled and you will need to reschedule.

Select your pickup location, click the link, and select a pickup date and from the times available.

Cedar Mill Library: https://bit.ly/CMLholds
Bethany Library: https://bit.ly/CMLBholds

Contactless Holds Pick Up FAQ

  1. If you are picking up holds for other library card users, please make a separate reservation for each account 
  2. Appointment windows are 30 minutes long in order to limit lines and to maintain a 6 foot distance between everyone.
  3. Please wear a mask when picking up holds. Staff will be wearing masks for your protection.
  4. When you arrive, if you come by vehicle park first, then go to the table designated by your last name. If someone is already at the table, please stand in line 6 feet apart until the person in front of you leaves. Then, move forward.
  5. When at the table, look for your name on the holds tag. Your holds will be checked out to you before your scheduled pick up appointment.
  6. We are accepting returns during these appointments. Our book drop remains closed at this time.
  7. Please bring your own bag if you prefer a bag to carry your items.
  8. If you need accommodations for outdoor pickup, please contact us at (503) 617-7323.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Do I need to wear a mask when picking up my holds?
    Yes. Staff will also be wearing masks for your protection.
  • Can I return items when I pick up my holds?
    Yes, returns will be accepted during your contactless holds pickup appointment. All returns will be quarantined for 72 hours before check in and therefore returned items will show on your account for a few days upon return. Our book drops will continue to be closed.
  • What if I miss my pickup window? Please contact the library to reschedule. 
  • How often can I pickup my holds? We are limiting holds pickup appointments to 1 time per week in order to serve all patrons. 
  • Can I request new items? New items can be requested in the online catalog at wccls.org. Not all libraries are open at this time. Therefore, hold requests on items at another location may experience delays in filling. 
  • Can I get assistance with a question? If you need account assistance, book recommendations, help with e-books, online databases or other services, please contact the library by phone or email. 
  • Can I pay a fine? You can pay fines online at wccls.org. We will not be accepting payments during holds pickup. 
  • Can I come into the library? The library building is still closed to the public at this time following health authority guidelines. Check out all the library has to offer online anytime!

Washington County residents are welcome to apply for a library card online anytime and gain access to an array of digital resources, including e-books, audiobooks, databases, and more.

To convert an existing E-access card to a general library card so you can check out materials, contact the library to make an appointment for curbside assistance.

Returned items will be placed in quarantine for 72 hours before being checked in. All items going out to patrons on hold will have been though a 72-hour quarantine and all staff will wear masks when processing your items.

Outdoor book drops are currently closed.  You may bring returns during our new curbside pickup hours. We ask that you wear a mask for the safety of yourself and others when returning books and to follow state and county physical distancing guidelines. Our curbside hours are:

Cedar Mill Library

  • Monday – Friday 10am to 1pm
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 3pm to 6 pm

Bethany Library

  • Tuesday – Saturday 10 am -1pm
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 3 pm – 6 pm

Thank you for your patience as we update and get our systems back up and running. You will be able to place new holds in your library account the week of June 22nd. Information on hold access and other WCCLS updates can be found here.

Disinfecting library materials may damage them. Following guidance from WCCLS, the library will put all returned items in quarantine for at least 72 hours before they are checked in and reshelved or put on hold for another patron.

Visit our Summer Reading page to learn how to track your reading and find out what fun we have planned for you all summer long! Visit WCCLS’s Summer Reading page to join fun scavenger hunts, virtual events, and online games.

The due dates for all physical materials checked out before March 20 have been extended to July 31. No late fees will be charged through September 30.

Second Edition Resale is currently closed and is not accepting donations. Visit our Second Edition Resale page and follow the shop on Facebook and Instagram to find out when and how to donate and shop.

All accounts nearing their expiration dates during our closure have been renewed through October 2020. If your card remains expired or you are having other account issues, please contact us.

Staff are available to answer your questions via email and by phone. Contact Us

Cedar Mill and Bethany Libraries are grateful for the 320 volunteers that help throughout our libraries every day of the week. New volunteer applications are welcome and will be processed when the libraries re-open. Learn about volunteering: volunteer

Ask A Librarian

by email Ask Us

by phone
  Cedar Mill Library 503-644-0043
  Bethany Branch 503-617-7323 (READ)


Have a research question?
Get help from librarians 24/7 at

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter For Updates

Message  from Peter Leonard, Executive Director, updated June 22, 2020

Dear Friends,

Holds service turned on. Beginning June 22, users may place holds for library items at wccls.org. The holds system through our county is complex and involves multiple libraries and a centralized courier system. Since libraries are at different stages of reopening and all returns must be quarantined for 72 hours, delivery will be slower than it was before the pandemic. The automatic holds notification system will not be turned on until most libraries reach a common service level. Each library will be contacting their borrowers when holds are available and arrange the pickup process. Libraries will first focus on fulfilling holds for their users from their own local collections. This initial process is not as robust as our users experienced in the past, but a measured approach at this time keeps the system sustainable.

Your libraries set up safety protocols for staff to work in the building. Physical distancing, mask wearing, work team scheduling, enhanced cleaning and quarantining are all part of the new systems put into place. New books that were ordered in March were delivered and are now being processed.

A new system for contactless pickup. We are using an appointment model because we can serve many more users than the “call a number when you arrive” model that may be used by other businesses. During this first stage of offering in-person services, in-library use will not be available. Libraries are not allowed to offer in-library services until Phase 2 of the Governor’s reopening plan. Cedar Mill and Bethany are still devising plans for limited in-library use, but rollout will only happen if it can be done safely without endangering users or staff.

We will not be opening our bookdrops at this time. All items are checked out through the end of July and we encourage our users to continue caring for library materials at home. All materials that are returned must be quarantined for 72 hours, so slowing the pace of returns will keep the system from breaking. With 80,000 items currently in our users’ homes, accepting returns over a longer period of time is manageable. If they all arrive in a few days we simply do not have enough storage capacity to hold them for quarantine. This quantity of books would require 1.4 miles of shelving to hold them! We know many items will be returned, but keeping them a bit longer will help.

Thanks for your patience as we restore services. We miss you and look forward to seeing you again (with masks, outside and at a distance).

Please bookmark this page and check back for updates, sign up for our weekly e-news or follow us on social media to learn when services will be available and how to access them.

Your library, anytime!

Watch movies with Kanopy, read books and audiobooks with Overdrive, read the newspaper and more from any internet connection — access your library from anywhere. Contact us by email or phone: We’re happy to help.

Library Service Updates FAQ

When you receive notice that holds are available for you to pickup, request an appointment as described below. Please make an appointment only if your holds are ready, or your appointment will be canceled and you will need to reschedule.

Select your pickup location, click the link, and select a pickup date and from the times available.

Cedar Mill Library: https://bit.ly/CMLholds
Bethany Library: https://bit.ly/CMLBholds

Contactless Holds Pick Up FAQ

  1. If you are picking up holds for other library card users, please make a separate reservation for each account 
  2. Appointment windows are 30 minutes long in order to limit lines and to maintain a 6 foot distance between everyone.
  3. Please wear a mask when picking up holds. Staff will be wearing masks for your protection.
  4. When you arrive, if you come by vehicle park first, then go to the table designated by your last name. If someone is already at the table, please stand in line 6 feet apart until the person in front of you leaves. Then, move forward.
  5. When at the table, look for your name on the holds tag. Your holds will be checked out to you before your scheduled pick up appointment.
  6. We are accepting returns during these appointments. Our book drop remains closed at this time.
  7. Please bring your own bag if you prefer a bag to carry your items.
  8. If you need accommodations for outdoor pickup, please contact us at (503) 617-7323.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Do I need to wear a mask when picking up my holds?
    Yes. Staff will also be wearing masks for your protection.
  • Can I return items when I pick up my holds?
    Yes, returns will be accepted during your contactless holds pickup appointment. All returns will be quarantined for 72 hours before check in and therefore returned items will show on your account for a few days upon return. Our book drops will continue to be closed.
  • What if I miss my pickup window? Please contact the library to reschedule. 
  • How often can I pickup my holds? We are limiting holds pickup appointments to 1 time per week in order to serve all patrons. 
  • Can I request new items? New items can be requested in the online catalog at wccls.org. Not all libraries are open at this time. Therefore, hold requests on items at another location may experience delays in filling. 
  • Can I get assistance with a question? If you need account assistance, book recommendations, help with e-books, online databases or other services, please contact the library by phone or email. 
  • Can I pay a fine? You can pay fines online at wccls.org. We will not be accepting payments during holds pickup. 
  • Can I come into the library? The library building is still closed to the public at this time following health authority guidelines. Check out all the library has to offer online anytime!

Washington County residents are welcome to apply for a library card online anytime and gain access to an array of digital resources, including e-books, audiobooks, databases, and more.

To convert an existing E-access card to a general library card so you can check out materials, contact the library to make an appointment for curbside assistance.

Returned items will be placed in quarantine for 72 hours before being checked in. All items going out to patrons on hold will have been though a 72-hour quarantine and all staff will wear masks when processing your items.

Outdoor book drops are currently closed.  You may bring returns during our new curbside pickup hours. We ask that you wear a mask for the safety of yourself and others when returning books and to follow state and county physical distancing guidelines. Our curbside hours are:

Cedar Mill Library

  • Monday – Friday 10am to 1pm
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 3pm to 6 pm

Bethany Library

  • Tuesday – Saturday 10 am -1pm
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 3 pm – 6 pm

Thank you for your patience as we update and get our systems back up and running. You will be able to place new holds in your library account the week of June 22nd. Information on hold access and other WCCLS updates can be found here.

Disinfecting library materials may damage them. Following guidance from WCCLS, the library will put all returned items in quarantine for at least 72 hours before they are checked in and reshelved or put on hold for another patron.

Visit our Summer Reading page to learn how to track your reading and find out what fun we have planned for you all summer long! Visit WCCLS’s Summer Reading page to join fun scavenger hunts, virtual events, and online games.

The due dates for all physical materials checked out before March 20 have been extended to July 31. No late fees will be charged through September 30.

Second Edition Resale is currently closed and is not accepting donations. Visit our Second Edition Resale page and follow the shop on Facebook and Instagram to find out when and how to donate and shop.

All accounts nearing their expiration dates during our closure have been renewed through October 2020. If your card remains expired or you are having other account issues, please contact us.

Staff are available to answer your questions via email and by phone. Contact Us

Cedar Mill and Bethany Libraries are grateful for the 320 volunteers that help throughout our libraries every day of the week. New volunteer applications are welcome and will be processed when the libraries re-open. Learn about volunteering: volunteer

Your library, anytime

Watch movies with Kanopy, read books and audiobooks with Overdrive, read the newspaper and more from any internet connection — access your library from anywhere. Contact us by email or phone: We’re happy to help.

Ask A Librarian

by email Ask Us

by phone
  Cedar Mill Library 503-644-0043
  Bethany Branch 503-617-7323 (READ)


Have a research question?
Get help from librarians 24/7 at