Due to a unanimous vote by the Gail Borden Public Library Board of Trustees on June 29 that was based on library services being critical to the community, all of the District Library buildings reopen with care as of Monday, July 6. Masks and social distancing requirements along with frequent cleaning, occupancy limits and plenty of plexiglass will help the Main, Rakow and South Elgin branches welcome visitors once again in a safe manner. In the hours descriptions below, please "walk in" virtually to see a very short video of each facility with the safety measures in place.


The bookmobile also reopened its doors July 6 to visitors, who are required to wear masks, while limiting the number of visitors aboard at the same time. 

Visits to the library buildings are quite different compared to pre-COVID to protect the health of both the staff and visitors. Visitors have found that: 

  • Masks are required for visitors age 2 years and older to enter the buildings.
  • Social distancing is required.
  • There are occupancy limits.
  • The Early Learning Center is closed at the Main Library.
  • All children 13 and younger must be accompanied by a caregiver.
  • The first hour of the day is reserved for vulnerable populations Monday through Thursday at all buildings.
  • The library building hours are slightly shortened for additional cleaning.
  • Passport Services at the Main Library are available by appointment only. To make an appointment, please call 847-429-4680.


The hours of the library buildings are as follows:


Main Library (270 N. Grove Ave, Elgin, IL 60120) 

Monday – Thursday 9 am – 8 pm          
Friday & Saturday 9 am – 5 pm                                              
Sunday Noon – 4 pm                                         

Vulnerable population hours at Main will be 9 – 10 am Monday – Thursday.


Rakow Branch (2751 W. Bowes Rd. Elgin, IL 60124)

Monday – Thursday 9 am – 7:30 pm 
Friday & Saturday 9 am - 4:30 pm
Sunday Noon – 4:30 pm

Vulnerable population hours from 9 – 10 am on Monday – Thursday.

  South Elgin Branch (127 South McLean Blvd.South Elgin, IL 60177)

Curbside service 7 days a week.

Monday – Thursday 11 am – 6:30 pm  Grab and Go 
Friday – Saturday 10 am –­ 3:30 pm Grab and Go
Sunday Noon ­– 4 pm Grab and Go

Vulnerable population hours from 10 - 11 am on Monday – Thursday

The additional curbside service at the South Elgin branch as well as Home Delivery Services will continue. Please check the web site as these services will not continue indefinitely.

Library staff will continue to thoroughly clean and disinfect tables, chairs, public desks, computers and shelving as well as all fixtures in the washrooms throughout all three buildings.

We are excited to see our customers in person again, but we urge everyone to take necessary precautions to help slow the spread of COVID-19. If you feel sick, please stay home and utilize our 24/7 eLibrary and virtual Your Library at Home programming. Please visit our website for updates about the services that we have available to customers, along with our Reopening with Care guidelines: www.bit.ly/gbpcovid19

KCT Credit Union reopened at Main on July 6.  


The Library has Reopened with Care as of July 6

Library visitors will find the following changes when they return to our buildings. These changes are temporary as we strive to provide the safest possible environment for library customers and staff. 

Social Distancing Measures—To make sure library visitors keep socially distant for safety, we have decreased seating throughout the buildings, spaced out seating in the computer center and decreased the number of computer stations available. Study rooms are temporarily closed.

The second floor self-check machine is out of service.

Passport Services at the Main Library are open by appointment only. To make an appointment, please call 847-429-4680.

Changes in Material Availability—Magazines and newspapers are not available for in-house use. Most Library of Things materials are not available for checkout except for eReaders, tablets and Hotspots.

Unattended Child Policy—For the health and safety of children visiting the library, children under the age of 13 must be accompanied by a responsible caregiver.

KidSpace Temporary Changes:

  • Toys and puppets are not available for in-library use or checkout.
  • Videogames, iPads and board games are not available for in-library use.
  • Early Learning Center playroom, dramatic play area, the Creation Station and climber are temporarily closed.
  • ELC picture book stacks are closed to browsers.
  • In-house coloring sheets are not available; kids’ crafts are take-home only.

Programs are temporarily all virtual and can be accessed at https://www.gailborden.info/your-library-at-home or at gailborden.info/events.