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  View a list of Polk County Library Services


The Bartow Library offers all these services:

Children's Programs: Promoting literacy is the purpose behind all children’s programming at the Bartow Public Library:

  • Our Book Babies program for children 18 months to 2 yrs. uses Mother Goose Rhymes to introduce young children to rhythm, rhyme and language. 
  • Our Story Time for children ages 3-5 yrs. introduces young listeners to a variety of picture book authors, illustrators, and literary characters.
  • Our STEAM for Home-Schoolers is an educational program for those ages 9-12 yrs. being taught at home, to give them access to science and engineering studies.
All our children’s programs are fun as well as educational, and all our programs are free. All the books used in our programs are available for check out, and we encourage young readers to do just that. By helping them become stronger, more confident readers, we hope they will become life-long readers and supporters of their public library.

Collection Development: Staff members are in charge of buying and weeding the Library's Collection, however suggestions are welcome.  We also accept suggestions for our eBook collection available through OverDrive.

Computer Instruction: Computer Classes, offered monthly as four-week instructional classes every Monday afternoon, and individual help offered as One-on-One sessions, are available to the public for free.  The classes are limited by number of available training computers, so we do require pre-registration to attend the classes.  One-on-Ones are available due to best convenient time for you, and may require you to bring your laptop or tablet device for hands-on training and troubleshooting.  Please contact Reference Librarian Paul Wartenberg, (863-534-0131), for more information.  

Copy Machine & Fax Machine: Copies service is available at $0.10 / page, and are black and white at letter or legal size paper.  Faxes may be made to both local and long distance numbers with a fee of $3 for the first 5 pages, and $1 for every set of 5 pages thereafter.  Faxing service is free to any paid member of the Friends of the Bartow Library group.

Databases: The Library subscribes to several research databases which are free to Patrons with active Library Cards.  Databases include WorldBook Online, ValueLine, OverDrive, and the Gale databases provided by the Florida Electronic Library service.  Accessing the databases require using a valid and current Polk County Library Cooperative Card (your library card) barcode number and the PIN number to your account.  If you do not know your PIN you can call the library at 863-534-0131 to verify and change the number.  Click here for access to many of the resources available to Polk County Patrons and also check out the Library website to find links to addition resources.

eBooks: Electronic books are available for checkout through the Library's Overdrive collection which is available here.  OverDrive provides eBooks for lending compatible with most reader devices including Kindles, Nooks, iPads, Androids, etc.  A valid Polk County Library Card barcode number and PIN number is needed to checkout material and instruction is available one-on-one for those who desire it.  Please contact Reference Librarian Paul Wartenberg at the Bartow Public Library at 863-534-0131 to ask for assistance.

E-mail Notifications for Events: Patrons may now sign-up to receive monthly E-mails regarding events occurring at the Library.  Patrons can get on the mailing list by E-mailing the Library (, or ask in person at the Circulation Desk.

Fine Payment: Fines accrue at the rate of $0.10 / day and may be paid at the Circulation Desk. A fine total of $10 or more will prevent checkout and block access to the library's public computers.  Other fines include titles not returned to where they become LOST items, the fines for such items vary due to the different cost each book or DVD or audio material carries with it.

GED Classes: We have temporarily suspended our GED training classes. The Polk County School systems offers a GED program. Please visit their webpage at

Group Visits PolicySome children’s only exposure to the library is through school/civic group visits. We encourage you to bring your class or group to the library, but please call us ahead of time to schedule at 534-0131. You may pick up a copy of our Group Visits Policy at the library.

Inter-Library Loan (ILL): If an item is desired from outside the Polk County Library Cooperative, an Inter-Library Loan request may be placed to have the material sent to the Bartow Public Library.  Certain titles - movie DVDs, audio discs, rare or reference holdings - might not be available for ILL request.

Meeting Rooms: Meeting Rooms are located on the 2nd floor of the Bartow Public Library and are given in priority to Library events, however, they may be used by non-profit organizations. The rooms are booked on a first come first served basis at $60 / day with a $4.20 tax, (though tax-free organizations may forgo this cost), and payment must be made by the day of service. The rooms are available for booking from Monday through Thursday, 8:30am to 7:00pm as well as Fridays and Saturdays from 8:30am to 4:30pm. Also, no fees may be charged to attendees and no sales to the events are allowed. Reservations must be made at least 7 days in advance and any loss or damage to Library property in excess of $50 must be reimbursed. To reserve a room, you may contact the Information Desk at the Bartow Public Library for any questions you may have and must come in person to fill out a reservation form.

Public Computers: The Bartow Public Library has 16 public access computers available to patrons.  A person may login to a computer on a first-come first-served basis using their last name and library card barcode (ID) number.  If you did not bring your library card or do not remember your number, then you can ask at the  Circulation Desk in person upon presentation of a valid photo ID to have your ID number given. 

No one under the age of 12 is permitted to use a public access computer without adult supervision.  The library's Children Area has four dedicated computers for children to access KidZui (a family-researched access to learning games), World Book Online for Kids, and TumbleBooks (Easy Reading eBooks).  

Patrons have access to the computers for four one-hour sessions per day, but may request more time if a genuine need arises.  Guest passes may also be created for individuals living outside of Polk County.  You must provide photo ID showing you reside from outside the county.

Receiving a Library Card: To receive Library Card a patron must show a valid photo ID that also contains a current mailing address within Polk County, or a photo ID and another document showing a current residence within the county.  For patrons under the age of 18, a guardian must show valid information and agree to be responsible for the items the minor checks out.

Renewal: The standard Loan Period of a Bartow Public Library item is 2 weeks, though an item may be renewed up to 2 times providing there are no other patrons with Hold Requests on the material.

Study Rooms: The Bartow Public Library has three study rooms that can be used on a first -come first-served basis, though patrons are reminded that the rooms are not soundproof and are asked to please keep their time usage to a courteous length. 

Wireless Internet: Wifi is available within the Bartow Public Library for patrons who prefer to bring their own laptop computers and tablet devices.  The wireless is free but it is unsecure.

Young Adult Programs: The purpose of programs for teens is to motivate creativity, inspire independent learners, and foster a sense of community. Teen programs cover middle school and high school students, ages 13 to 18. Teen programs are designed to be fun, innovative, and creative; all programs are free. Materials relating to the programs are available at the library and teens are encouraged to check out the materials. This also includes having a Teen Advisory Board, which counts towards volunteer hours for scholarship and school requirements.  We encourage teen to contribute to this interactive world by having teens take an active role in their library collection and library service experiences.




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Last updated: 10/4/2016 3:34:12 PM