Phased Reopening FAQ

Racine Public Library Reopening April 19th for Limited In-Person Services
As approved by the City of Racine Health Department and the Racine Public Library Board of Trustees, Racine Public Library will be initiating a gradual reopening of the physical library building on April 19th. The library staff is deeply committed to serving the public and is looking forward to welcoming you back. (We’ve missed you!) During our phased reopening, the Racine Public Library will exercise due caution and are taking all recommended precautions as we gradually work to restore physical access to our collections, programs, and services. Please see below for what you may expect during your visit, and thank you for your cooperation and understanding of our efforts to ensure everyone’s safety.


Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Fridays & Saturdays 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
We are taking a number of precautions to limit personal contact and to follow social distancing guidelines.
  • Total building occupancy shall not exceed 50, inclusive of staff
  • Reducing our hours to ensure staff have sufficient time for enhanced cleaning
  • Reducing seating and asking patrons not to congregate
  • Reducing the number of computers available for use
  • Providing social distancing markers
  • Requiring staff to wear masks
  • Requiring all patrons over age 2 to wear masks that cover nose and mouth. This is required per the City of Racine Health Department Ordinance and the Racine Public Library Board of Trustees policy; if you do not have a mask, we will provide disposable masks
  • Using plexiglass shields at selected service points
  • Quarantining returned library materials for the recommended 24 hours
  • Increasing frequency of cleaning high-touch areas
  • Providing hand-sanitizing stations and encouraging frequent hand washing
  • Deep cleaning the library every night
  • Patrons over age 2 will be required to wear a mask to enter the building. This is required per the City of Racine Health Department Ordinance and the Racine Public Library Board of Trustees policy; if you do not have a mask, we will provide disposable masks. The mask must cover the mouth and nose.
  • Staying home if you’re experiencing symptoms of any illness
  • Observing social distancing guidelines
  • Limiting your visit to RPL to 45 minutes or less
  • Children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult at all times when in the library. 
  • Respecting the rules and following the instructions of library and security staff
Yes. At the moment, we will only be allowing 50 people, inclusive of staff, within the building. You may be asked to wait in line until we have space for additional patrons. While in line, please follow social distancing guidelines and keep six feet between you and other patrons. A staff member will let you know when you may enter the library.
Yes. We are requiring all patrons over age 2 to wear masks that cover their nose and mouth. If you do not have a mask, we will provide you with a disposable mask. If you’re unable to wear a mask, our curbside pickup service is available, as well as a plethora of online resources.
Both our Youth Services Department and Adult Services Department will be open for browsing. We encourage you to limit your time within the library to 45 minutes or less.

Patrons will then be able to utilize the self-check machines to check-out and staff will be available to assist, if necessary.
Materials on hold can be made available for pickup in the outer lobby by calling 262.636.9241 for curbside pickup when you arrive. We will allow for 5-minute parking in the circle for patrons who are picking-up holds.

Self-check machines are available in the lobby.
Curbside pickup is here to stay, so you can always call 262.636.9241 when you arrive, and the friendly staff will pull your items for you to retrieve from the outer lobby. We will allow for 5-minute parking in the circle for patrons who are picking-up holds. The pickup of holds in the lobby will be the primary way that we encourage patrons to have access to physical library materials.

Our Call Center will continue to be available during normal operating hours. Call to ask questions about our current services, place holds on library materials, ask questions about our online collections like Libby/OverDrive - Wisconsin’s Digital Library, or other questions.


No meeting rooms will be available to the public during this phase.
Yes! Study rooms will be available for 45-minute appointments. We ask that study room doors remain closed during use and in-between appointments. There will be a table and two chairs available in each study room.

Study rooms will be cleaned after each use, including wiping down the table, chairs, and doorknobs.
The Local History Room will not be available during this phase. Staff may retrieve materials for patrons upon request. You are encouraged to email with research questions so staff can prepare materials in advance of your visit.
During this phase, there will be no in-person programming or gathering and therefore, The Lab will not be available.
The children's play area will not be available during Phase 1 of our reopening. You may browse within the Youth Services Department and we encourage you to limit your time to 45 minutes or less


Yes. However, computers will only be available in the Adult Services Area. Computers in the Youth Services Department will not be available. Computers will be available for 55 minutes. No appointments necessary. Staff will clean and disinfect the computer keyboard, mouse, monitor, and work surfaces in preparation for the next patron. Patrons needing help with personal devices should call or email the tech staff at 262-619-2560 or to schedule a virtual appointment. Reference staff will maintain social distancing while assisting patrons with the computers or personal devices.
Yes. Printing, copying and faxing will all be available. There will be no charge for any of these services through June 30th, 2021.
Patrons will be offered a set of earbuds if they are asked for, and do not have their own. There will be no charge for the earbuds and patrons may keep or dispose of them as they see fit.


All returns must be returned in the library book drops either outside the Main Library or at our various locations around the service area.

The inside book drop will not be available for the time being.

Oversized materials, WiFi hotspots, Tech devices, and other nontraditional items may be returned at curbside pickup.

Following the guidelines of Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction, we continue to quarantine all returned materials for 24 hours.


No, the Racine Public Library Bookmobile will continue to act as a curbside pickup location at its various stops throughout the week:

During this phase, patrons will not be allowed on the bookmobile due to social distancing constraints. Thank you for your understanding.


Yes. Notary services will be available yet limited to times when a Notary Public is in the building.

An appointment must be made for Notary services. Please call (262) 636-9217. Please do not sign any documents prior to your notarization appointment.
We miss all of the in-person programs too! At this time though and while we are offering limited services to reduce contact and close interactions, we will not be offering in-person programs. We’ll certainly let you know when it’s safe to do so again.

Please be sure to continue to follow our social media accounts and YouTube channel for all of our various events.
Yes. All donated materials will be quarantined for a minimum of 24 hours.

Monetary donations can be made in-person, via the Library’s website, or mailed to the Library.
Yes. Patrons will have access to the Friends of the Library book sale nook. Payment for any book sale items will be accepted in the lobby.

At this moment, there has been no discussion yet about an annual Friends of the Library book sale.
Yes. We will have one microfilm reader available during this phase.
The newspapers will not be available during this phase. We encourage you to refer to our website for online digital resources accessible with your library card.