This is a little bit like in LIS 701, when I had to go visit a library and write a paper about my observances. This time I visited the Oak Lawn Public Library's Website. This process has come full circle for me, since I did write a paper in 701 about this library, I did my reference slave time there, and have made friends with a few of the librarians. I really am a fan of this under utilized library, and I personally advocate for it every chance I get. I live in Chicago, so this is not my local library, but I do have a reciprocal card for them.
Once again, OLPL did not let me down. OK--I do have a few problems with their design--BORING! But the information provided therein is amazing! It is everything the library has to offer right at your fingertips...
The general information is useful, but they go into such detail to list every periodical the library subscribes to, the full OPAC is available, and they have even listed available pamphlets and brochures. All of this could save a person a trip to the library, as they can check availability online.
In the reference section, you will find a page entitled "Ask A Librarian." By leaving your card number, contact information and general info, you can ask a reference question and get an answer back by e mail on the following business day. The youth services has orgainized reference databases for the kids, as well as over 700 websites of interest. The fiction department has listed new titles, bestsellers and the various bookclubs that meet at the library.
They have a page devoted to local history in which you can review obituaries, old newspapers, photo archives and even the minutes from local governmental meetings. This is an old neighborhood, and the library is building on available research to save steps for anyone interested.
Finally, they link to various sites in the community, including the government offices, schools, churches and medcical centers. My mom would say that this website is "as handy as a small skillet," (you will just have to imagine the irish accent, since I can't replicate it in type). I myself have visited the site many times since I discovered it a few weeks ago, and even saw my husband on it for information on a restaurant...