Vermont Snapshot Day 2016 Results!

During National Library Week, from April 11-April 16, fifteen libraries in the state of Vermont participated in Snapshot Day – a day for Vermont libraries to keep detailed statistics and photos documenting a typical day in the library. Here is what we found:

For those sixteen libraries, 7,237 people visited the library and 28 outreach visits were made by library staff. The libraries circulated a total of 5,153 items.  53 interlibrary loan requests were also fulfilled.  17 new library cards were issued and librarians answered 117 reference questions.  Topics included:

  • Seeking a phone number for a church in Gainesville, GA
  • Researching genealogy/family history for a resident of Saugus, MA
  • Giving recommendations for books on specific topics: i.e. fictional horse books, princess books, beach/vacation reads
  • Learning about the Kendama toy
  • Printing an attachment to an email
  • Finding, downloading, printing 2015 tax forms
  • Accessing and printing a boarding pass
  • Figuring out the order of books in a particular series
  • Attaching a resume to an email
  • Logging into the Unemployment website
  • Getting contact for the state department for tax assistance
  • Figuring out why the flag was at half-staff at the elementary school
  • Finding articles on race relations in Brazil
  • Researching the Japanese Art Deco movement
  • Statistics on Costa Rica’s total exports starting in 1880 in US Dollars

23 programs for children were held as well as 2 teen programs and 15 adult programs. Total attendance of library programs was 427 people.  Programs included:

For kids:

  • Preschool storytime
  • Story Rhythms for Babies and Toddlers
  • Stuffed Animal Repair
  • Kids test kitchen cooking program Mac N Cheese taste test
  • Crazy 8’s Math Club
  • Beverly Cleary birthday party
  • Monthly Crafternoon program: Clothes Pin Creatures
  • Young writers group
  • Tech Tuesday
  • Working on writing/performing an original musical
  • A visit from “Wild Thing”


For adults:

  • Monthly Travel Talk Series: Destination Oaxaca Mexico
  • Monthly Fiction Book Club
  • Knitting group
  • A volunteer thank-you luncheon
  • AARP Tax Assistance
  • Italian Conversation Group
  • A to Z Lifelong Music Program featuring the work of composer Ellen Taafe Zwilich

For teens:

  • Teen Role Playing Game
  • Dungeons and Dragons
  • Scavenger Hunt

Other general programs included an art exhibit, a homeschool group program about Russia and an all ages game night. There were also 11 meetings held on library property with 71 people in attendance.

Public computers were used 397 times. WIFI uses were hard to count for most libraries but we know that WIFI was used at the participating libraries AT LEAST 218 times.

Volunteers gave the fourteen libraries 102.5 hours of service, doing things like working at the front desk, shelving books, assisting with general cleaning, and assisting with programs.

We also took the opportunity to ask our patrons why they use the library, why they love the library, how the library has helped them and how the library has changed their lives. The results were numerous.  Highlights include:

  • I have met some new people there and can now call them friends
  • Save money by borrowing instead of buying
  • The workers are kind and nice
  • It feeds a great love/hobby in my life
  • It gets me out of the house
  • The ladies go out of their way to help us
  • Its activities cover a broad scope of interests for a town of this size
  • It helped me break out of my shell
  • I met my boyfriend here
  • Makes my parenting life easier and better
  • It has allowed my kids to experience things they otherwise wouldn’t




Some quotes from library users & staff:

“My library is a sanctuary, a safe and enlightening place, and a social center where stuffed animals are repaired, family trees are propagated and yo-yos fly! – patron, Windsor Public Library

“I tell everyone that the South Burlington Library is the best place ever!” – patron, South Burlington Community Library

“I’ve been coming here for 21 years! Best part of Fairfax. Family-oriented, child focused, learning, growing, FUN!  It’s all here!”  – patron, Fairfax Community Library

“A student came to the desk this afternoon. Last night, I had helped her find data on agricultural exports from a country in Latin America at the turn of the century.  She came back this afternoon with another data question – and said that the article we found last night was really useful and included even more data than she had found before – or knew existed.” – librarian, Middlebury College

This library helps in so many ways in my life. From finding a good cookbook, homework, history, entertainment for kids, great movies.  This library is great! Vincent, patron, Bennington Free Library

“The library is the town’s best resource.” – patron, Westford Public Library

“The library allows my family to pause and to be together with friends while playing in a beautiful learning environment. As a new mom, I also learn new things from other parents that help me be the best that I can be.”  – Amber, patron, Bennington Free Library

“I appreciate the friendliness, helpfulness, and dog biscuits!” – patron, Hartland Public Library

“I love working for the Miller Information Commons because you get to work with a great group of people to help support and expand the informational resources that are an integral part of the college” – Parker D., student worker, Champlain College Library

“The librarians help me find books. The librarians are also really nice and help out.  The library could only improve by getting more books, otherwise it is great just as it is.” – young patron, Greensboro Free Library

“Math Club is the best part of my day.” – young patron, Westford Public Library

“The Burnham Library is a community treasure. What a wonderful resource for our town.” – patron, Burnham Memorial Library

“I love, love, LOVE how belonging to the Green Mountain Consortium has expanded my choices! Thank you!” – patron, Fairfax Community Library

“A community is not a community without a library.” patron, Windsor Public Library

Seeing these statistics, we agree wholeheartedly!


What happens in a single day in Vermont libraries? How many books do you check out? What type of activities are taking place? What type of questions are being answered?

Take a “snapshot” of a day in the life of your library and help us get a picture of how Vermont libraries are making a difference in our communities!

Snapshot Day is a statewide initiative where all public, school, academic and special libraries have the opportunity to capture one day in the life of their libraries through, photos, user comments, statistics, and other data. Choose one day during the week of April 10-16, 2016 to collect your data and photos. The data you gather will be added to data gathered statewide from all types of libraries and will capture the collective impact that Vermont’s libraries have on their communities on a typical day.

Here’s some helpful info to make Snapshot Day a success at your library:

After your snapshot day, please submit your statistics using one of the two forms below to:  christine @