Bookworms and event planners can now take a 360-degree glimpse at the Columbia County Library from almost anywhere in the world.
On Jan. 26, the county launched an online virtual tour of the library on its Web site: www.columbiacountyga.gov.
The tour is a marketing effort by the county aimed at attracting library visitors and facility rentals for events, said Sandy Boner, the county's Community Centers Department manager, who is in charge of facility rentals.
Highlights of the tour include the Children's Library, Footnotes Cafe, gift shop, computer stations and the Genealogy and History Room.
Boner said the virtual tour will give event planners from other parts of the county a better look at county facilities. Boner said crews from 360 Degree Ultimate View, an Augusta-based company producing the video, will soon get to work on a tour of the Savannah Rapids Pavilion.
"We have a lot of outside rentals anyway ... We don't only rent to locals now," Boner said.
Todd Glover, the county's management services director, wrote in an e-mail that the library tour cost about $500. The cost for other tours will vary depending on the complexity of the shoot and the number of scenes, he said.
"It is our hope that this panoramic view of our library will more than pay for itself by increasing rentals of the facility," he wrote in the e-mail.
Several virtual tours have been proposed for the future.
Lewis Foster, the county's information technology director, said sites currently under consideration are: county parks, annual county events, Savannah Rapids Pavilion, the Jabez Sanford Hardin Performing Arts Center, the Columbia County Amphitheater and Reed Creek Interpretive Park. A tour promoting donations to the county's greenspace program also is being considered.
To take the library virtual tour, go to the Web site, www.columbiacountyga.gov, and click on the virtual tour link under the What's New heading.
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