ROY -- The Weber County Library System has been stepping up efforts to publicize its summer activities, adding a revamped website and Facebook page to its assets, and the library staff has devised a new way to incite people to join in the fun.
Sarah Lovato, a librarian from the southwest branch of the Weber County Library System in Roy, agreed to dress up like a chicken and do the chicken dance in public if the library's Facebook page received a certain number of "likes."
"I think people who know me know this is not something I would do otherwise, but I really believe in what the Weber County Library System is doing," Lovato said.
Programs geared toward children, teens and adults have been scheduled throughout the summer months. These include reading groups with activities for the younger crowd and film screenings of blockbusters such as "The Bourne Legacy" or classics like "American Graffiti" for the older crowds, all of which should keep the libraries' patronage steady in the off-school months.
A recent report made by the American Library Association found that, in the recovering economy, libraries serve not only as a more financially prudent means of entertainment, they also provide a way for adults to use the Internet for employment opportunities, continuing education and government resources. The Weber County employees have chosen to use digital platforms as a way of promoting the libraries rather than simply viewing technology as a liability.
"We wanted to open up a new avenue to promote the great programs we are having. We saw Facebook as a tool to make people aware of Weber County Libraries' online presence," Lovato said.
Eventually, the Facebook "likes" contest spread to other library branches, and now one group of male librarians at Ogden's branch has promised to dress up like the rock band KISS and record a music video if they are able to achieve 1000 additional likes on Facebook by Saturday.
Lovato is confident that people will see the humor in the competition and will understand that their intention is to connect with the community and make the library an enjoyable experience.
"This whole thing is all in good fun. I hope it shows the county that we really believe in the services that the WCLS is providing," Lovato said.
Each branch of the Weber County Library System now has its own Facebook page, and a calendar of events for the five branches and the Law Library can be found at www.weberpl.lib.ut.us.