Summer Reading Rewards!

Summer Reading is still going. You have until August 21 to finish and come in for prizes.

Bring your phone or device that you are using with the ReaderZone app and show us your progress. Even if you only reach 25% of the goal, there is still a brag tag available.  A little something fun to carry around to show that they met their goals this summer.

Use these last few days before school starts to finish the reading program. We have 106 registered Reader Zone users! That is awesome. Watch for more reading challenges in the future.

Bring in your child and your phone, show us on the app where your child is on reaching their goal, there are different award levels. We are excited to pass out the awards.

We know we have rewards to pass out! Just look at our progress badge! This is as off July 24, 2020.




Summer Reading in the Zone has begun.  Welcome to Reader Zone! Get ready for an easy, paperless way to keep track of books your children read this summer. You can download the app or you can log into Reader Zone on any PC. Pretty cool, right? To use Reader Zone you will need a unique code that is only for Seneca Library patrons. You can find the code on our Facebook page and our website, or you can call us. Parents can add all children on the same app. This makes it easy to keep track of books read, hours read, and how far along each reader is towards the goal. Along the way readers will receive awards when they reach 25%, 50%, 75%, and then 100% of the goal. The library will be able to see each reader’s stats and know when goals are reached. We have a different reward system this summer and we will tell you all about it when you reach a goal!

We have three levels in Reader Zone for you to choose from. The levels were inspired by our summer theme, “Imagine Your Story”. Level one is Gerald’s Gnome Club for those from birth to age 5. Readers in this category need to read at least 20 books during the program. The next group, Gerald’s Tall Tales Club is for those ages 6 – 11 and has a goal of 20 books. The last group, Gerald’s Legends, is for those ages 12 – 18 and requires 8 hours, which is 480 minutes. Reader Zone has a timer that can be set while a child reads or parents can keep track and add minutes manually. Clear as mud? If you have a 10 year old who wants to read by hours, that is great. As a parent you have the opportunity to decide with your reader which level to record them in. The three levels are designated levels from the State Library for statistical purposes – the library police will not be checking your child’s age.

Because we can’t have people in our community room in June we can’t have live programs. We are very sad about this; this is not how we imagined our summer at all. Dee will be reading stories on Facebook live and we will post our schedule soon. You can mark your “attendance” for story time in Reader Zone also. We will list the story time date and book title in Reader Zone with a different code from the reading levels. Readers have 10 days to listen to the story live and record attendance and record the book as one read on the reading log.

We will have many craft grab bags during June. The bags will contain most ingredients for a story time craft (you might need a little tape or glue from home) along with simple directions. Grab a bag and make a cool gnome, hairy troll, community hero wind chime, or a sparkly crown! Bags will be limited to one per child in the preschool age range. Ask the librarians for all the details.

There will be some grab bags for our ART/STEM patrons also, including kites and mermaids. Ask at the library for all of the details.  Super fun from the library!


JUNE 5, 2020   The library will resume evening hours the week of June 8, remaining open until 8:00 pm. We will remain closed on Saturdays for a little bit longer. The public restrooms are still closed due to the resources involved with sanitizing them on a regular basis. Parents remember this when you bring your little ones to the library. Even though the county has “opened up” we still have a responsibility to sanitize high traffic areas and frequently used items. The county asks people to continue to maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet and to not go out in public if you are sick – with anything. There is also a recommendation to wear masks. Several of our pandemic precautions will remain in place as long as the virus has a presence in our county. We thank you for your cooperation and understanding.
We will still be required to quarantine returned items for 72 hours before they can be reshelved. When requesting items for hold, please keep this in mind. Your place in line will stay the same and we will notify you when any items are ready to be checked out. Please let us know if we can help you in any way.
Guess what? That’s right, courier service will begin June 8! You will be able to request items in the shared catalog again. There are still a few NEXT libraries that will not be open yet, but the majority will be sharing material. Now is the time to return all library materials, especially those items belonging to other libraries. Items requested and shared outside of Seneca shelves will be quarantined before check out. We will notify you as soon as your items are available. Have fun seeing what is new. Let us know if you have any questions.

JUNE 1, 2020  Yes, we are open to the public. But we do have a few concerns to address: *We ask that everyone wear a mask while they are in the library. If you do not have one, we do have a few for our patrons to use and take with them. *We ask that patrons practice social distancing. Parents, please help your children with this also. *Computer use is limited. We have 3 computers available to the public. Each patron has 30 minutes a day on a computer. *Please have your library card ready to use. We can scan through the plexi-glass, so we do not even have to touch your card! *If you do not feel comfortable with these rules, we can meet you at the door with your check outs. We hope to see you soon!

We are plastic wrapped at this time, for your safety and ours, so don’t be too surprised when you walk in.


Thank you for checking the website for information. We do our best to keep it current.

May the 4th Be With Us

All items returned will go into quarantine for 72 hours, then will be disinfected before returned to the shelf.

Let us know how we can help you find your next good read. For kids, let us know their interest and we can pull a few books about that topic. We are here to help get books into our patrons hands, even if they cannot come in to our building.

Thank you for your patience. It’s a good day to have a good day!

Library Giving Day

The day to celebrate #LibraryGivingDay is April 23, 2020
Library Giving Day started as an idea generated by the Seattle Public Library Foundation. The concept was to create a national day of giving that public libraries would rally around and that the public would embrace. So, Seattle Public Library partnered with their strategic library fundraising partner, Carl Bloom Associates, to turn the idea into a reality.
#LibraryGivingDay is a one-day fundraising event with the goal of encouraging people who depend on and enjoy public libraries to donate to their individual library system. And in turn, that support will go toward the incredible programs, services and materials provided by local libraries all over the country.
HOW TO GIVE:  Click on our logo below, then look for  GIVE NOW to make a donation. Be sure to choose SENECA FREE LIBRARY from the drop down menu. As we know, public libraries are known for books and research materials, but they also offer many programs that promote lifelong learning, connect patrons to technology, and advance our knowledge.
Though we have been closed during the Covid-19 crisis, we continue to work to make digital resources available to our patrons.
Here is a snapshot of what happened at your library in 2019:


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Need a Library Card? You are Now Able to Self Register!

Great news! The tech gurus at Northeast Kansas Library System, our regional office, have been working tirelessly to help us all get through these challenging times. Our patrons are now able to self register for a library card online.

NOTE: Self registration allows access only to hoopla {ebooks, audio books, movies} and Flipster {online magazines}. If you want Libby {ebooks and audio books} you will have to email us and we can help walk you through the process. Any patrons that self register at this time will have to use an e-mail address that is not already in the system. These accounts will expire July 31, 2020.

To get started,  Click on NEXT Search Catalog on the front page of this website.  At the top of that page you simply click on “Click here for more information”. This link will take you to a registration site for a temporary library card that gives you access to hoopla and Flipster. Digital services for free at your fingertips.

Questions? Email us at: There is also a link for the State Library and a State Library card. Thanks to our fabulous tech staff at Northeast Kansas Library System!

Library Closing Updated 4/17/2020

4/24/2020  As we write this, Kansas is under lockdown until May 3rd. We are making plans for reopening the library, whenever that day comes. Not only will the library look different physically, our operations will too. We are spending this last [we HOPE] week in isolation making plans for serving our patrons while also keeping you, and us, safe. We are also trying to come up with a plan for our Summer Reading program. Please be patient with us, this is new territory for everyone! Right now we are trying to work around social distancing and limited event sizes. Will there be a limit to the number of people who can gather? What will that number be? If you have answers, we’d like to hear from you.

What we do know, at this point, are the guidelines we’ve been given from our regional office and the state office. The draft proposal shows five phases. We are in Phase 1 which is a total shut down. We will be entering Phase 2 as a soft reopening. For example: to start with we would still be closed to the public, but would give ‘curbside’ service for limited hours, say 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Patrons would have to place items on hold, or otherwise let us know what they want, we would pull items from the shelf and have them ready for pick up outside the library doors. And, yes, we are serious. All returned items would have to go into quarantine for at least 72 hours, then be wiped down with a disinfectant before going back on the shelf. There would still be no computer services, no copying or faxing, or anything that involves physically coming in the doors. No donations will be accepted during this phase of reopening; no books, no bubble wrap or shipping envelopes, no plastic bags. How long this phase will last is yet to be determined.This is a fluid situation and can change daily. Please check our website: or follow us on Facebook for the latest information.  The last phase will be to Return to Normal Services.

The online catalog will allow you to place holds from your home library only.  If your home library is Bern or Corning or any other library in the system, and you are used to picking up your holds in Seneca, that will not be an option. As a patron of these other libraries you would only be able to put a hold on items that library owns. At this time there is no statewide courier service between libraries. Before you begin your search, go to the box on the upper right of the search page and change from All Libraries to Seneca Free Library in the drop down menu. If you are on the Advanced Search page, look below the Collection Types area for that box.

We will be using the Community Room as our quarantine area for returned items. So that means there will be no in person programs or meetings at the library until Phase 5, most likely.

Remember all of our digital services are available as well as our FREE curbside wifi. If you have questions about hoopla, Flipster, or Libby just contact us. The drop box is now available. All returned items are kept in quarantine and then sanitized before being returned to the shelves.

REMINDER: If you don’t have a library card, you are now able to self register for a library card online. Self registration allows access only to hoopla {ebooks, audio books, movies} and Flipster {online magazines}. If you want Libby {ebooks and audio books} you will have to email us and we can help walk you through the process. Any patrons that self register at this time will have to use an e-mail address that is not already in the system. These accounts will expire July 31, 2020.

 4/17/2020  The governor has extended the Covid-19 shutdown until Sunday May 3rd. The Library will continue to be closed during that time. * We finally have the library back in order after the carpet replacement. Now we are working on a plan to keep our staff and patrons safe once we are able to open to the public again. Our regional office and the library community in general have all kinds of suggestions. We have to decide what will work best for our community and our situation.  * We are excited to announce that patrons can self register for a temporary library account online. Look for another post on our website for details.

3.24/2020 Nothing has really changed for our patrons. We are still closed. The drop box is still closed and not back in place.  * Inside we are a jumbled mess. Not just because we miss all our patrons, but because the carpet guy is going full steam ahead. * The good thing is nothing has left the building, so we will eventually find it all back and put it in it’s place. We hope. * We’ve been busy cleaning the shelves, removing dust and dirt while they are empty. We plan to rearrange some things, so not everything will go back exactly where it was, and that will take time to work through. * We’ve been advised to quarantine items as they are returned to us. The Community Room will be used for that space, but first we have to clear out everything we moved over there when the carpet guy arrived. * Remember when we said it is like the story “If You Give A Mouse a Cookie”? We meant it. * The best way to reach us now is by email at: * We hope you are all well and are practicing social distancing. We hope you have been able to access our online resources, if you need something to read.

3/23/2020 How are you today? Our world continues to spin out of control, our control. Today’s updates: As of 4:00 pm Tuesday March 24 we will no longer check items in or out. * Library due dates have been extended to May. * We will let you know when we are ready for you to return the items you have checked out. Keep them in a safe place, but remember where that safe place is. * The drop box is still unavailable * Patrons can contact us by email at * We post often on Facebook and Instagram and, as you already know, since you are here, our website. * Thanks for checking in. * Stay safe and wash your hands!


3/20/2020 Our status is that we are now closed until further notice as advised by state and national organizations. *  As we posted yesterday, if you place a HOLD online, we will pull the items you want and check them out to you when you come up to the door. * Right now our drop box is not available. It’s been pulled away from the wall so the carpet layer can put down carpet in that spot. * We’ve added instruction videos to our Facebook page and in another post on our website. * Though we are closed, one or two of us will be at the library to answer the phone, check emails and Facebook messages, and check the HOLDS list, Monday thru Friday 10~4. *

3/19/2020 The hold feature is live again! Here are the facts:
1. You can only place a hold on items we own and that are currently in the library. Please check the status of items you want. If it is in transit or at another library right now, it will not be available until after April 5, at the earliest.
2. Any item checked out right now has a due date extended through April 20. Don’t worry about getting items back right now.
3. Items checked out right now and returned to us will be held in quarantine and won’t be accessible for some time.
4. Items can only be picked up between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm weekdays. No Saturday service.
5. Please allow us time to process your request. Don’t come until you have received an email, phone call, or text notifying you that your item is ready.
6. Item(s) will be checked out and brought to the door, no one is allowed into the library. You may need to call 785-336-2377 because we might not see you come up the sidewalk.
7. Wear your catcher’s mitt so you can catch your items when we throw them. Just kidding. But, seriously, don’t breathe on us.
8. Call if you have questions.
9. We miss you and we don’t like this anymore than you do.

3/18/2020 Our courier delivery service has been suspended until April 5. So any holds you have on your account coming from another library will not be arriving until after that date. If your hold is here already, give us a call, we can meet you at the door and get it to you.

Most libraries in our area are closed, so holds will not be filled anyway. But also know that the regional office has changed the due date of items already checked out. Don’t fret about returning items. We don’t charge over due fines.

BREAKING NEWS: The library will close at 8:00 pm this evening, March 17. We will remain closed through March 23 at which time we will reevaluate the situation. The Board of Trustees has made the decision based on information from the State of Kansas and American Library Association.

We know this is inconvenient and we do not take closing lightly.
Items on hold can be picked up. You will need to call us and let us know you are coming and we will meet you at the door.

All of our digital services are available.
We can help get you set up with hoopla, Libby, and Flipster so that you have entertainment in the palm of your hand.
Our WiFi is free and can be accessed from the curb or parking along the east side of the building.
Call us, we want to help you. 336-2377.


Instruction Videos to Help You Access Online Resources

Hoopla is a free service offering audiobooks, eBooks, movies, TV shows, music, comics, and more!

Well, we hope this video helped  you get started on HOOPLA. Below we have added information for you to get the most out of the app. We hope this helps and you get the most out of this new-to-you app!

Libby is another free app giving you access to eBooks and audiobooks. You will need to set up an account and pin with us, so call 785-336-2377– before you begin– between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm weekdays.

Here is a really quick look at how to use the online shared catalog. There is so much more than the video offers, but this will get you started. If you forgot your password, or are having trouble logging in, please call us.

Here is a quick intro to Flipster, our free online source of magazines. You use the same credentials that are needed to access our online shared catalog.

Below is a  link to  YouTube videos from Robin at our Regional Office in Lawrence about Learning Express:

Learning Express videos