Frequently Asked Questions


How many books/items are in your collection?
We have over 17,000 physical volumes/items at the library, and thousands more are available as e-books and e-audio downloads from our Bridges collection. In addition to books and DVDs, we also offer cake pans, STEM backpacks, and maker space items (in house use only). You'll be surprised by the variety of items we have at the library.

Do I need a library card to use the library?
No. You do not need a library card to visit the library. If you do not have a valid library card you are welcome to attend any programs and use library materials in-house, this includes our free wi-fi and public access computers. In order to fully access all of the resources and services of the Ida Grove Library, you would need to have a valid library card, this includes checking out materials and access to online services and resources. We encourage you to consider signing up for an Ida Grove Library card, it's truly one of the best cards you'll have in your wallet! To find out how to get a card, start with our Get a Library Card page. 

Do you have computers for public use?
Yes, we have eight public-access computers. Four desktop computers are located in the main library for adult use and four laptop computers are located in the children's library for use by children and teens. Computers are free to use, however, time limits may apply if there are other patrons waiting to use the equipment. Patrons can also print from the computers for a fee.

Can I bring my own computer/tablet to work in the library?
Yes! You're welcome to bring in your personal device. We offer several work and reading areas for patrons to use their own personal computers or devices, we also have ample charging options in the library. Our wi-fi is free and available 24/7 both inside of the library and on library grounds; there is no password to access our wi-fi.

I need to send/receive a fax. Does the library offer this service?
Yes! We can send and receive faxes for our patrons. Outgoing faxes can be sent during library open hours, incoming faxes can be received by the machine 24/7 and be picked up by patrons. If you are expecting a fax transmission, please inform the library staff. Any items received without patron name, address or contact information will be shredded. Please see our Fax Services page for more information and charges for faxing services.

I'm getting older, and my vision isn't what it used to be.  How can I keep reading?
There are a few options available. Many of our readers enjoy Large Print materials, and we have a nice selection of titles in our collection. We also receive monthly loans of additional large print titles from another Iowa library to help supplement our collection. If you have a tablet or e-reader, downloaded books can be read by increasing the font size until you can read it clearly. Other patrons prefer audiobooks, either on CD or downloaded and played from a tablet or phone. If your eyesight is deteriorating beyond simple age-related issues, please contact the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped for other adaptive devices and services.

What if I don't want my children checking out certain materials or using the internet?
As a parent, it's within your rights to want to restrict what your children read or view.  However, library staff cannot and will not limit access to anyone, even children. Unlike a school, the library staff do not act 'in loco parentis' and are not legally able or allowed to restrict access to anyone or to act as a caretaker. If you're concerned about what your children are reading, viewing, or checking out of the library, attend the library with them or screen their materials when they get home. And as always, all parents should be actively involved in what their children are accessing and viewing online.

Does the library close due to severe or inclement weather?
Occasionally. Our current policy allows for library closure during both inclement and severe weather events. This is for patron and staff safety as well as to allow city staff to plow and scoop the parking area and sidewalks. During summer weather, the library will remain open. In the event of severe summer weather, library staff will inform patrons of expected weather and seek shelter until the weather event has passed. Library restrooms have been designated as a tornado shelter for staff working and patrons in the building. Please speak with your children about what to do in the event of a summer storm, and make sure they have somewhere safe to go. As always, closings may be at the discretion of the library board and/or director. Inclement weather closings are posted on the library's Facebook page.

Is there a charge to attend a library program?
Not usually. All of our programs at the library are free and open to the public. Occasionally, we may charge a nominal fee to cover supply costs for crafting programs or special programs and presenters may bring books or materials to sell after their program, etc. 

I have a bunch of old books at home.  Can I donate them to the library?
Maybe. We have very limited space and do not have room for a lot of donated items. However, books that are current or less than 5 years old and in good condition may be donated to the library. All donated items become the property of the library and may be added to the collection, sold, or disposed of according to our Materials Selection and Collection Management Policy. We cannot accept any items that are dirty, smell of smoke or animals, contain markings or writings, or encyclopedias, textbooks, almanacs, etc.