I’ve heard it said that entrepreneurialism is in the DNA of Sandpoint residents. But, how many seasoned business owners, start-ups, and other professionals think of The Library as an important business resource?
We asked ourselves this question when we were selected to be the Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce’s September Business of the Month. Most people probably know that they can find thousands of resources at The Library. Finding it is another story.
“Who has the time to pore through a hundred books or databases to find what they’re looking for … if they even know what they’re looking for,” Vanessa Velez, collection development and cataloging specialist for the East Bonner County Library District, said.
“Our staff know our collection, our community resources, and how to conduct research. People can come to us in the dream stage of their business and we can help them find the resources to take the next steps.”
Not only can start-ups look to The Library, but established businesses may be overlooking a valuable resource for addressing some of their business pain points. Here are a few examples:
• Business directories and databases: Find industry-specific reference materials with information on associations, journals, trade shows, and more. Business directories equip you to build targeted sales and marketing lists and scope out your competition. Find business plan templates, accounting methods, employee best practices, and more in our online databases. Our librarians can help you navigate all of it.
• Office services such as print, copy, scan, and fax, plus Wi-Fi and desktop computers equipped with internet, Microsoft Office Suite, and other software. There may be a small fee to cover printing costs, but it is less expensive than a designer coffee. Librarians can help with connectivity issues, familiarity with new applications, and other simple technical questions.
• Legal re- search: Find industry regulations, patents, employment laws, ownership structure, and answers to lots of other legal questions from the Digital Library. Type your topic into the search field in the Legal Reference Center and get instant answers without leaving your office.
• Prototype design. Take one of our monthly 3D Printing Workshops held at the Sandpoint or Clark Fork Libraries, then download the free software on your office computer. Design a prototype and submit your order to The Library to be printed on one of our 3D printers for the cost of the filament.
• Marketing: The community meeting rooms are busy with independent and library-sponsored meetings and events. These are great occasions for networking or even sponsoring. Find social media tutorials in Niche Academy, a green tab found on the right side bar on our website. The Small Business Reference Center in the Digital Library has tons of marketing resources.
• Professional development for yourself and your staff: An ever-changing schedule of classes and workshops on topics from drone flying to small business grants is listed in our Events calendar at www.eBonnerLibrary.org. Learn a new language, Adobe PhotoShop and InDesign, Microsoft Office Suite applications and more from your desk with our Digital Library databases. Use virtual reality to study anatomy, oceanography, chemistry, art, nature, astronomy, math, and calculus in our new Explore VR room at the Sandpoint Library.
All of our library staff are helpful, friendly, and skilled at research. They can help you find the shortest distance between your question and the answer. Whatever you are looking for, even if you are not sure what you are looking for, start with The Library.
The following take place at the Sandpoint Branch, 1407 Cedar Street, unless otherwise indicated.
• Tuesday, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30 — Mother Goose, 10 a.m. Stories and singing for babies and toddlers 0-3 years old and their caregivers with stay-and-play until 10:40 a.m. Note that Mother Goose starts 15 minutes earlier. Info: 208-263-6930, ext. 1211, or email@example.com.
• Tuesday, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30 — Preschool Stories, 11 a.m. Stories and crafts for kids and their caregivers. Info: 208-263-6930, ext. 1211, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Tuesday, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30 — Robotics, 3 -5 p.m. at the East Bonner Co. Library Dist. Clark Fork Branch, 601 Main St. Info: 208-266-1321.
• Tuesday, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30 — Intro to Virtual Reality, 3-6 p.m., drop-in 20-minute sessions. Experience VR. Explore the world with Google Earth VR, swim in the deep sea, go on a virtual tour, play arcade style games or walk a plank suspended from an 80-story building - all from the safety of The Library! First come, first served. Under 18 must accompany parent consent form. Under 14 must be accompanied by parent/legal guardian. Info: Contact the Tech Desk 208-263-6930 ext.1251.
• Wednesday, Oct. 3, 10, 17, 24, and 31 — Clark Fork Stories and More, 10:30 a.m. Stories, crafts, prizes and snacks for kids ages 3-8. Clark Fork Branch, 601 Main.
• Wednesday, Oct. 3 10, 17, 24, and 31 — Intro to Virtual Reality, 3-6 p.m., drop-in 20-minute sessions Experience VR. Explore the world with Google Earth VR, swim in the deep sea, go on a virtual tour, play arcade style games or walk a plank suspended from an 80-story building — all from the safety of The Library! First come, first served. Under 18 must accompany parent consent form. Under 14 must be accompanied by parent/legal guardian. Info: Contact the Tech Desk 208-263-6930 ext.1251.
• Wednesday, Oct. 3 — 3D Printing Workshop. 4-6 p.m. at the Clark Fork Branch. Design your own 3D printed object and learn some fascinating ways 3D printers are being used. Space is limited and pre-registration is required for this beginner-level class: 208-266-1321.
• Thursday, Oct. 4, 11, 18, and 25 — Infant Lapsit, 10 a.m. A rhyme program for pre-walkers and their caregivers. Six-week session through Oct. 25. Pre-registration is required: Suzanne Davis 208-263-6930, ext. 1211, or email@example.com.
• Thursday, Oct. 4 — Writer’s Workshop: Selling to Your Niche Market, 5:30-7 p.m. Community Room B. Instructor: Captain Bill Collier, former Vietnam helicopter pilot and author of two action-packed memoirs set during that period. Presented by the Idaho Writer’s League - Sandpoint Chapter. Information and registration: firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Saturday, Oct. 6 — Sandpoint Friends of the Library Book Sale, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Support your library while supporting your book habit. Score deals on used books and media at the monthly FOL sale.
Marcy Timblin is in charge of public relations, marketing and community development for the East Bonner County Library District. She can be reached at 208-208-208-263-6930, ext. 1204.