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Updates on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Updated 7/8/2021

Audio-Reader is excited to announce our reopening plans! Phase 1 begins August 16th. Baehr Audio-Reader building will by open by appointment only Monday-Friday from 8:30 am - 2:30 pm. 

During Phase 1: 
  • Priority will be given to weekly programs and certain special requests.
  • Day-of programming will remain remote throughout Phase 1.
  • Telephone Reader volunteers will remain remote indefinitely.
  • Book readers will be able to reserve two slots per month.
  • Live reading and front desk volunteer assignments will be added upon further review at a later date.
 
Phase 2 will begin September 27th, 2021. The building will be open by appointment only Monday - Friday from 8 am - 5 pm. During Phase 2 volunteers reading weekly or day-of programming will be able to reserve studio time.
 
To schedule your studio time, contact Alison abd@ku.edu 785-864-4604 (please leave a voicemail).
 

Some Long-term Changes at Audio-Reader

  • Audio-Reader will no longer be open on weekends or holidays.
Instead, we will utilize home readers to create day-of content and holiday programming while the building is closed.
 
  • Live reading will not return in the same way post-COVID.
As we move through re-opening phases, a select few live assignments are expected to return. More details to be announced.
 
  • All Telephone Reader assignments will now be completed remotely.
The vast majority of Telephone Reader volunteers have been reading from home since before the pandemic, and we plan to continue with remote assignments that can be completed over the phone.

  • A review of our Special Requests program is underway and assignments will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
We are excited to partner with Kansas Talking Books to help distribute Special Requests publications. This program will continue to offer flexibility in making unique publications accessible to our patrons.
 

Health & Safety Precautions for Studio Users

When not recording in your studio, masks are encouraged and highly recommended for unvaccinated individuals (refer to KU guidelines)
 
Volunteers will be responsible for cleaning studio spaces before and after their studio booking:
  • Wipe down surfaces
  • Lysol spray microphone pop filter
  • Cleaning materials and gloves will be provided in each studio
 
The coffee bar will remain closed – please plan to bring your own refreshments. You may fill water bottles at drinking fountains on site.
 

A New Way to Volunteer: Reading from Home 

Interested to give digital home reading a go? Here are a couple of things to bear in mind, for all prospective home readers:

  • Home readers must be existing Audio-Reader volunteers who have passed the reading audition and completed new volunteer orientation. Prospective new volunteers, please visit this page to sign up as a volunteer
  • You'll need a quiet place in your house to record
  • Access to high-speed internet at home
  • Good options for both recording and reading devices (this can either be one good computer, or a phone and another reading device like an iPad)
  • Home readers will need to be comfortable with reading their publications from the internet
  • Finally, you'll be expected to communicate via email, navigate online platforms like Dropbox and be able to troubeshoot technology issues independently

If you think any of the above sounds like a good fit for you, please email abd@ku.edu for instructions on our Home Reader Survey. This will help us assess which volunteers have what tools available, and how we might work to help you create a home reading option.


Go Further with your Home Recording Setup

Purchase your own affordable "Plug and Play" home studio kit

Audio-Reader highly recommends Audio-Technica's bundle product that includes a microphone, headphones and a handy boom arm, that can all be connected by USB, so audio signal handling is extremely user-friendly. This microphone produces excellent quality home recordings and allows you to build a home studio that is comfortable and very effective.

This is the same technology some Kansas Public Radio hosts have been using to record from home, and we have good experience helping folks get this started quickly and easily.

Check out the Home Recording Kits here and email nickcarswell@ku.edu if you have any questions


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Upcoming Events
Audio Description of On Your Feet! at Starlight, KC
Saturday, September 11, 2021 - 20:00
16th Annual Lawrence Area Partners in Aging Senior Fair
Tuesday, September 14, 2021 - 10:00
2021 Sunflower Fair - NCFHAAA
Tuesday, September 21, 2021 - 08:30