Cedar Rapids Public Library is opening early to serve as a warm reprieve during extreme cold weather

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The Cedar Rapids Public Library. — via CRPL Facebook page.

In response to the dangerously cold weather, the downtown location of the Cedar Rapids Public Library is opening an hour early through Thursday, Jan. 31, to accommodate anyone who needs a warm place during the day, as the wind chill drives down temperatures.

“The Library always strives to meet the needs of our community. This week we are doing what we can to ensure the safety of those who are most vulnerable,” Dara Schmidt, the library’s director, said in a statement on Monday.

The downtown library will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. through the end of the month.

The Greyhound Cafe, located inside the library, is temporarily closed while its floors are being repaired, but the library will be offering coffee, cocoa and pastries, although supplies of each will be limited.

In addition to warmth and the possibility of pastries, the library lists the following amenities available to all:

• Free use of public wifi

• Public computers and printing

• Free meeting rooms

• Free digital resources, including downloadable ebooks, audiobooks, movies and music

• Classes and training on everything from the basics of computers to 3D printing

• Resume and job search assistance

• A vast and vibrant collection of books, movies, music, and video games

The downtown branch is also currently serving as a drop-off location for non-perishable food items for the Cedar Rapids Community School District Food Drive.

The CRPL’s second location, the Ladd Library at 3750 Williams Blvd. SW, will be open its normal hours through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and is also welcoming anyone who needs a warm place during the cold weather.

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