Wiesbaden Library offers window to many worlds

It’s a multi-dimensional portal to worlds far and wide.

Karl Weisel/USAG Wiesbaden
Marco Marques checks out books for a patron at the Wiesbaden Library.

It’s a physical place — and at the same time a virtual reality.

That’s right, today’s Wiesbaden Library is a lot more than simply a collection of hard-copy books, CDs, DVDs and reference materials.

“The library has really evolved,” said Wiesbaden Library Director JoAnn Ogreenc. In addition to now offering around-the-clock access to online resources ranging from genealogical services to language lessons, test preparation to tutorial services, the library is also a place where people come together for recreational, cultural and children’s activities.

“What we’re really concentrating on is being a gathering place — America’s living room — a place where people can get together,” Ogreenc said.

During a grand reopening of the library last year, patrons learned more about the opportunities available through the library and the updates made to enhance the overall library experience.

“Over the past three years we’ve been redesigning the library to make it a more flexible space,” Ogreenc said, explaining that this gives the staff and patrons the ability to more easily move things around for various functions and events.

“We’ve redone the computer stations to allow for more privacy.” Other features include USB charging stations, memorable quotes on the library walls and more comfortable study and relaxation areas.

“Expand and explore — that’s what it’s all about,” Ogreenc said, pointing to the wide range of free materials and services available — both physically and at the click of a computer mouse.

“We have books, video games, select movies, audio books for those long drives and an exceptional children’s selection including Spanish-language books,” she said, adding that e-books, audio, video and e-magazines and newspapers (including nine major U.S. dailies) are also featured.

“Anytime someone comes in we let them know there are a host of online tests they can do,” including CLEP and GRE preparation, she said.

A handout available at the library front desk provides a handy showcase of online resources and how to get connected to gain access. Whether looking for a small-engine repair guide or brain training, downloadable e-materials or business or history texts — it’s all listed in the 2019 Online Resources Guide.

Regular features at the library include preschool and Spanish language story times, American Girl Doll socials, Lego block parties, “Maker” arts and crafts classes and holiday book events.

“We’re also partnering with Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers to offer life skills programs,” Ogreenc said, pointing to a project where BOSS members make bean bag chairs for their barracks rooms.

Community members are encouraged to see the options for themselves during the library’s regular opening hours, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday in Bldg. 1029 on Clay Kaserne — or anytime online through mwrlibrary.biznet.com.