Johnson County Library boosts online engagement with Library OnDemand

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OLATHE, Kan. — The Johnson County Library has a new tool to give patrons a chance to enjoy local workshops on their own time.

Library OnDemand is the latest feature on the library’s website, offering free, pre-recorded presentations, workshops and Q&A sessions from experts in the community. 

Joseph Keehn, event and programs coordinator for the Johnson County Library, said many of the programs are presented live, then are recorded with closed captioning and housed on the library website for people to view on their own time.

“We saw that there was a gap, especially with presenting content that patrons would then be able to experience at the convenience of their own time,” Keehn said. 

Keehn said the library began creating virtual content during the pandemic. He said prior to launching the OnDemand webpage, the library served roughly 65,000 people online using tools like Facebook and Zoom. 

“We have an amazing staff at the library that is able to pivot pretty quickly on things and jump to opportunities. When the stay at home orders occurred on March 14th, by April 20th we were already presenting programs online,” Keehn said. 

In addition to live content on the library’s Facebook page, residents can enjoy pre-recorded presentations on topics like arts and culture, money management and community resources in Johnson County. 

“Our main purpose at the library is to provide access. One thing that we have learned during this time is that people have access online throughout the day. It’s not just a given time,” Keehn said. “Making sure that our programs are accessible at various times. One way to do that is making sure they are recorded and are available on demand.”

The Johnson County Libraries will host all programs virtually through the summer. Keehan said in-person programs are slated to return later this fall. 

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