Emma S. Clark Memorial Library and its grounds escaped Hurricane Sandy mostly unscathed, and the library reopened on Sunday afternoon with a reception of coffee, tea and hot chocolate for its patrons.
On Monday, after numerous patrons said the didn't have power or access to television, library administrators made the decision to stream the election coverage throughout the day in its large meeting room.
The library is also waiving fines for late items through Wednesday at least, and has set up charging stations for patrons to charge their electronics.
The building suffered a broken palladium window in its main wing but otherwise there was no damage, according to director Ted Gutmann. "We'd just had the trees done a week before," he said. "They did a good job because we didn't have any branches or trees down."
On Sunday, Bob Johnson, manager of technology systems and services, called the library's re-opening "a little bit of normalcy" for the community.
"You'd be surprised at how a little thing like a cup of coffee can go a long way," Johnson said.
Tami Dalton, a four-year resident of East Setauket, came to the library with her family to make the most of the daylight and pick up some items to keep them occupied while the power was still out. "The library opening really helps," she said.
Jordan Ballard, who lives in the vicinity of the library, agreed. "This is great, having the library open," he said. "This is the first time I was able to check email in seven days."
But Ballard touched on a more serious issue, too.
"Today was also the first day I saw a lot of the news coverage," he said. "Despite all this, I definitely feel fortunate that we weren't in a more vulnerable area."