Okanagan Regional Library using Discord to connect with community

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The Okanagan Regional Library has created its own Discord channel for board game lovers and community members to unite.

“When we were open, the library used to host weekly board game nights… and obviously that couldn’t happen anymore but we still wanted to be a part of the community,” said Evan Burgess, reference librarian at the Kelowna branch.

The library started a Discord server, which is an online streaming and communication platform most commonly used by gamers, to allow people to join “because people really want to be doing something right now, and we want to help people connect,” Burgess said.

The server, called ORL Gaming, is hosting Friday night board game nights starting at 6:30 p.m.

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The regional library is also making community announcements and news on Discord. The server has been running for a few weeks.

Roughly 40 users are a part of the chat.

“We don’t want to be the ones organizing things as much. We want people on the channel to organize their own events,” he said, adding aside from the main board game event, he's hoping people will host their own events.

The last session of board game players enjoyed a round of Jackbox, which is a series of party video games, and had 13 players join in.

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For those who can’t play during the round, audience members can also participate, earn points and even contribute to who wins.

Currently, the library is only offering Jackbox but that may change in the future, Burgess said.

“It’s a really good opportunity for the community to come together and people are just looking for new things, for novel things. We as a library we try to offer new services,” he said. "We’ve heard a lot of commentary from people they’re bored, their kids are bored and they want to try something else.”

A lot of new patrons have also been signing up for e-books and online programs, he said.

Join the Discord server by logging in with this link.

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