Annalise, 7, and Carys Mehlo, 3, of Bellevue paint rainbows on their windows overlooking the Ohio River Valley. Mother Alisa notes that it is not window paint, but they can scrape it off later. "It's complete anarchy around here."

These resilient Pittsburgh-area kids find ways to connect and spread joy during a time of COVID-19 turmoil

Iconic Pittsburgher Fred Rogers encouraged people to “look for the helpers” in scary situations. As Pittsburgh, along with the rest of the world, pauses to practice social distancing to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus, kids across the metro region find themselves out of school. Playgrounds are surrounded in caution tape; libraries and museums are closed; and play dates are strongly discouraged. Who, then, are the helpers? Obviously, there are our first responders, our medical workers and our other essential workers.

SUBMITTED Bayne library

From wizards to mentoring, Allegheny County’s public libraries are vital, sometimes noisy spaces

Established in 1994, the Allegheny County Library Association has 46 member libraries over 70 locations, including 19 branches in Pittsburgh. The organization brought the county’s independent libraries together with the city to help them stay relevant. Today, many of them are vibrant learning spaces for adults and children alike. To highlight the changing and varied roles libraries play for residents, PublicSource explored how four libraries serve their unique communities.