Christina Lake library outreach service a success

The Grand Forks and District Public Library's outreach service to Christina Lake has seen success after a pilot period.

After a successful pilot period, the library outreach service from the Grand Forks and District Public Library to Christina Lake is entering its second year.

Ted Invictus, board chair for the Grand Forks Public Library Association, noted that aside from one complaint, he’s heard nothing but positive reviews.

“Everybody who has been there and is involved with the new location (at the Christina Lake Welcome Centre), which is more suitable to the requirements of a library, is happy with it and I’ve received great feedback,” he said. “I believe that it’s blossoming to become a really valuable resource.”

Invictus noted that the pilot program started last year to determine what the response from the community at the lake would be and if there was any interest.

Avi Silberstein, library director at the Grand Forks and District Public Library, concurred.

“We definitely want to improve the program,” Silberstein said. “It’s a little tricky because I am new here so I don’t have a sense of what the community in Grand Forks or Christina Lake want.”

Residents at Christina Lake can borrow books from the library in several ways, noted Silberstein, with a permanent collection of books that remain at the Christina Lake Welcome Centre.

“Folks that use that collection can also order from the collection in the Grand Forks library, so they can place a book on hold from the website,” said Silberstein. “The same applies with inter-library loans. If they want to borrow a book from UBC (the University of British Columbia), we can bring it out to the lake as well.”

To order online, rather than selecting the pickup option of Grand Forks, there is a scroll down option for Christina Lake.  Residents can also call the library to put a book on hold.

Future changes may include a permanent book return box so residents can return their books at their own convenience, though there won’t be any additional days for the service at the lake at this point.

Invictus pointed out that the biggest restraint to having more hours at the lake is budgetary.

“The requirements of having a staff member out there (at the lake) means we have to have a staff member here at the library covering the person who has left the building,” said Invictus.

The library is available to Christina Lake residents every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Christina Lake Welcome Centre.

To borrow a book, visit