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Where is the library?
The library is located at 201 East Merchant Street in downtown Kankakee. It is the first 4 floors of the Executive Centre. For a map, click here.

What are the library's hours?

Click here for library hours and holiday closings.

Who is eligible to get a library card?
Any resident of the City of Kankakee is eligible to get a library card. Proof of address is required before getting the card. A Kankakee postal address is not necessarily inside the city limits of Kankakee. Individuals who reside in an area not served by a public library, but do pay property taxes on land owned within the city limits can get a free card by presenting a current property tax receipt. Individuals living outside the Kankakee city limits, who do not own city property, and who do not reside in a library serviced area, can buy a card for one year for $180.00.
Fines and Fees

What do I need to bring with me to get a card?
To prove your residency in the City, you will need to bring a photo ID and two pieces of mail from a business or agency that has your current address on it. The mail must be newer than 30 days old.

Aren't public libraries free? Why can't I get a free card?
Many of the programs and services we offer are free to everyone. These programs are Internet services, periodical and book browsing, author visits and speakers, reference and readers' advisory services. You must have a library card to check-out materials. The Kankakee Public Library is paid for by the property tax dollars of the citizens of the City of Kankakee. Persons living outside the city limits pay nothing to our library. A common misconception is that persons who pay taxes to school district 111 should be able to get a library card for free. The Kankakee Public Library gets no income from district 111, so those in district 111 living outside the city limits must still pay for a card.

I have a card from another public library. May I use it in your library?
Yes. Any holder of a card from a public library recognized by the Illinois State Library may checkout materials. Libraries around the state have agreed to reciprocal borrowing policies that makes this possible. However, if you do not have a Kankakee Public Library card, a one dollar fee is required for internet usage.

When will my library card expire?
A Kankakee Public Library card issued to a patron who resides within the Kankakee city limits is valid for 2 years. Library cards for non-residents are valid for 1 year. When your library card expires, keep it and it will be renewed. If you lose your card, report it to the Circulation Department immediately to prevent unauthorized use. Each replacement card is $3.00.

How long may I borrow materials?
Most books and periodicals can be checked-out for 2 weeks.  Ready Reference and Genealogy can not be checked-out. 

How can I find out if the library owns a particular item?
You may call the library and we will be happy to look the item up for you. Also, you may go directly to the PrairieCat online catalog and look for materials yourself. ENCORE allows users to look for items in the Kankakee Public Library, Kankakee area libraries, and libraries throughout PrairieCat. Patrons can also renew items in PrairieCat and check the status of their account.

How many items may I check out at one time?
We ask that our patrons use their good judgment when checking out print materials.  Some restrictions may be placed on high demand materials.

How may I renew my materials?
Materials may be renewed in person or over the telephone by calling 815-937-6901.

What if my materials are late?
Return them, and/or contact the Library as soon as possible. The book return in front of the library's main entrance is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When materials are seriously overdue (more than three weeks) replacement and processing charges are added, and your account may be sent to a collection agency. Once materials are returned, overdue fines stop accumulating. We do have a one day grace period on print materials. Currently fines are 10¢ per day for books, and $1.25 per day for videos/DVDs. Patrons with fines over $5.00 are not allowed to check-out materials until the fines are paid. You can also look at our complete Fines and Fees schedule by clicking here.

Is there an outdoor book return?
There is an outdoor return box in the parking lot of the library. The slot on the left is for print items. The slot on the right is for CDs, DVDs, and other Audio-Visual materials. Please be sure to put the materials in their correct slot to avoid damage.

What if the material is damaged or lost?
Contact the Library as soon as possible. In most cases, you will be charged for the lost or damaged material as well as a processing fee which covers the costs to order, cover, catalog, and generally prepare a new copy for our collection. You can also look at our complete Fines and Fees schedule by clicking here.

Does the library have internet access? What are the rules?
Check our Internet Policy page for more information.

How can I find out about library programs?
Many events are noted in the Daily Journal. All programs are advertised in the library well in advance of the event. This web site will also note any upcoming programs. Click on the "MainEvent" button on the homepage, here to check the calendar of events, here to read our FaceBook page, or here to read our Twitter page.

Does the library have past issues of the Daily Journal?
Yes. The library collects the Daily Journal for 4 months on paper. After that, it is transferred to microfilm. The library has a collection of the Daily Journal and its predecessor papers spanning from the 1850's to the present on microfilm. Current issues are available at daily-journal.com via subscription.

Will library staff look for obituary notices for me?
Yes. We prefer that local patrons come to the library where staff will be happy to help them do their own research. However, homebound or long distance patrons can request an obituary search by requesting one by emailing our genealogy researcher Carol Zoladz. Be sure to give as much specific information as possible. We must have at least the year and month of death to do a search. We can not search more than 3 names per request.

Can the library help me find other information?
Yes. The Kankakee Public Library has a Reference Department to answer patron's questions. We are happy to render homework help, research assistance, or to simply satisfy curiosity. You can call the Adult Services department at 815-939-4564 or ask a question online by emailing the Adult Services department.

What is available for children?
We are proud to have a fully staffed Youth Services Department with a collection of over 30,000 books for children, ten computers (6 with age appropriate software, plus four with PrairieCat and report writing software). For more information about Children's Events call 815-937-6960

What is available for teens?
The "Teen Zone," located near our cafe, offers an inviting place for young adults to study, read, or check-out the latest material geared to teens. For more information about Teen events call 815-928-7792.

Does the library comply with ADA?
We are proud to say that the Kankakee Public Library is compliant with all ADA requirements.

I've got another question about the library. Where may I ask it it?
You can ask more questions by calling the library 815-939-4564 or emailing the appropriate supervisor. You can find the supervisor guide here.