Nevada County Library launches app

Nevada County launched its new Community Library mobile app on Monday as part of a continued outreach effort throughout the pandemic.

Penn Valley Library Branch Manager Cindy Pawlowski said the app — found by searching “Nevada County Library” in the app store — was designed to improve people’s accessibility to the libraries’ educational and entertainment resources during and between government shutdowns.

“We determined that it would help make things more accessible, but it’s also something we can use beyond that,” Pawlowski said. “Most people nowadays are using their phones more than their laptop.”

Pawlowski said County Librarian Nick Wilczek recognized the need for mobile support, then researched and connected with a private company to create the app.

Patrons can manage their account remotely by placing items on hold, checking due dates and renewing items, Pawlowski said. According to a library press release, the app also will connect county residents with ebooks, downloadable audiobooks, digital magazines and free streaming services.

Pawlowski said county residents will even have the chance to “judge a book by its cover,” something they have not been able to do since libraries closed in March. Library enthusiasts and general bookworms can interface with the mobile-friendly catalog, which features the newest additions to the library’s collection.

“A lot of people miss being able to browse,” Pawlowski said. “We have a scrolling carousel that is on the app. People can go in there, and see — visually — what books we’ve added recently.”

Pawlowski said patrons are able to click directly on the book of interest, and reserve it as soon as it becomes available.

If a patron’s friend makes a recommendation from their own bookshelf, users can scan the ISBN to determine the resource’s immediate availability countywide, Pawlowski explained.

Pawlowski said the app also provides calendar updates about upcoming library-hosted events — all remote for now.

Wilczek said the library is excited to use the app to connect with more residents during this public health crises.

“We are constantly seeking ways to improve our service to the community,” Wilczek said in a press release. “This app enables library users to access library resources and information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from the convenience of their phone.”

Pawlowski directed Android users to Google Play and iOs users to the Apple Store to download the app for free.

Pawlowski said if users do not have the library card and corresponding pin numbers required to log onto the app, they can contact the Nevada County Library to create one.

Rebecca O’Neil is a staff writer for The Union, a sister publication of the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at

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