Today is the first of my two weekends for the fall semester and business has been brisk in one regard, tours. One of the more inclement days we have seen for some time, it's raining cats and dogs, at last count there have been a dozen tour guides introducing prospective students and parents through the library on their campus tours. They come in the library valiently shaking rain from soaking umbrellas wearing inexpensive university rain ponchos reminiscent of throw-away rain gear available at football games and the Maid of the Mist at Niagra Falls and hear a variety of prepared comments from their guide.
Three categories of tour guides were in the library; newbies, regular library users, and those who have never darkened the door before the tour. New guides present a quick overview and often move their groups in and out in record speed. One of the new guides today asked me to introduce the library to their group (nice) saving me from having to gently correct errors. Guides who are library users add a bit of flair to their spiel and often point out help is available and mention more than available computers. Other guides, sadly, have obviously never darkened the library door and often present misinformation. I usually mind my own business (though it is difficult when this is a great opportunity to speak with groups) and never want to embarrass anyone or interrupt, but during one tour today I had to step in and correct a student who said our instruction classroom was an open lab available to all students at all times (sigh). I mentioned while this room is periodically made available during extended hours before and during finals, it is mainly for instruction. The young man was a bit chagrined, but the parents were reassured (they nodded happily) that the main function meant their students would be provided instruction for library use.
Morning tours seem to be at an end and the rain has subsided somewhat. I am going to order children's books and other necessities for the resource center.