Blog & News

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DIY @ Your Library During Teen Tech Week

Teen Tech Week is coming to Spring Lake District Library on March 9-15th! It’s a time for teens to geek out at the library while exploring new technology or familiarizing themselves with online resources (beyond Wikipedia).

Throughout the week, teens can stop by the Youth Services desk to test themselves on library trivia.  Working together and looking up answers is highly encouraged, and right answers will win a sweet treat!

Need a change of scene while studying for high school or middle school exams?  Teens are invited to come study by themselves or in groups at our Exam Crams!  We’ve having two during exams – the first is Sunday March 9th from 2pm to 4:30pm and then on Tuesday March 11 from 5pm-7pm.  If teens bring their brains and books, we’ll provide snacks.

On Thursday March 13, we’ll be having a Teen DIY Spa Day at 4pm.  After a long winter of snow and cold, kids aged 10-18 are invited to learn how to make their own lip balm and sugar scrub to help recuperate for spring.

We’re also hosting a Super Smash Bros. Tournament on Wednesday March 19 at 3:30pm! Ages 10-18 are encouraged to sign up to battle each other on the library’s big screens by Friday, March 14th.    Or if battling isn’t their style, they can stop by to cheer their friends on on the 19th.

What other things can teens do to celebrate technology this week (from

  1. Download an ebook or audiobook from your library.
  2. Visit your library’s webpage.
  3. Blog about a library book or program.
  4. Try out a book-focused site like GoodReadsLibraryThing or Shelfari.
  5. Create a soundtrack or book trailer for your favorite book.
  6. Ask your librarian to recommend a nonfiction book on an area of technology that interests you.
  7. Add something to an article on Wikipedia.
  8. Set up a podcast for a group or club you belong to. (Click the link to check out YALSA’s podcasts!)
  9. Many young adult authors welcome email from their readers many have their own websites, blogs, and Twitter/Facebook accounts. Why not send them a message in honor of Teen Tech Week?
  10. Check out some DVDs, or CDs from your library.
  11. Start a Teen Tech Club at your school or public library.
  12. Read and contribute to a blog about technology.
  13. Watch some anime or start an anime club at your library.
  14. Create a YouTube or Animoto video about your library or a favorite book.
  15. Download a newspaper article from the day you were born from an electronic database.
  16. Volunteer to help clean the computers and media at your library.
  17. Volunteer to tutor library customers who are new to using computers.
  18. Learn how to DJ music or record music with a computer.
  19. Search in a biography database for an article about your favorite musician.
  20. Learn how to use some new software.
  21. Take a class on graphic design or digital photography.
  22. Create a database of something you want to organize.
  23. Start a TwitterTumblr, or Flickr account.
  24. Check out an eReader or Playaway audio book from the library.


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Big Library Read – Keys to the Kitchen

Get ready for the third Big Library Read!  What’s a Big Library Read?  It’s when millions of eBook readers from all over the world can download and read a book at the same time.  There’s no hold list for this book – everyone can check out and download the eBook at the same time!  You can download this book at any time from Monday, February 17 through Wednesday, March 5.

This time around, they chose a cookbook: Keys to the Kitchen by Food Network star Aida Mollenkamp.  All Spring Lake District Library cardholders are invited to download and read it or try out the recipes!  There are more than 300 contemporary recipes along with color photographs, informative illustrations, and a primer to important kitchen techniques.  This would be a good book to check out on a tablet like an iPad, Kindle Fire, or Android.  If you don’t have one, remember the library has iPads available for checkout.

To check it out or learn more about Keys to the Kitchen, you’ll find it at OverDrive.  You’ll need to log in with your Spring Lake library card number to check the book out.  If you have any questions about how to check out and read eBooks, OverDrive’s help site has lots of good information.  We’ve also scheduled a class on downloading eBooks from OverDrive during the Big Library Read on Friday, February 21 at 10am.  Be sure to pre-register to reserve your place or stop in at any time for assistance.

Tax Time

Tax Form Update!

If you’re a tax season early bird, you’ll be happy to know that most of our tax forms have arrived!  We have the Federal 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ forms along their instruction books along with the general Michigan forms and Home Heating Credit forms.  We aren’t able stock all the tax forms out there, but all forms are available online either at or

Are you a senior feeling overwhelmed at the thought of doing your own taxes? The Four Pointes Center for Successful Aging (formerly the North Ottawa Country Council on Aging) is here to help!  The Center is providing trained AARP tax aides to assist seniors.  To make an appointment with a tax aide, call the Four Pointes Center at 616.842.9210.  Meetings can be held here at the library or at another location.

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Library Closing at 4pm on Monday January 27.

Due to the weather conditions, the Spring Lake District Library will close at 4pm today, Monday the 27th of January.

Even though the physical library is closed, our eBooks and eAudiobooks are always available for check-out on OverDrive.  You can also put materials on hold for pick up at the library using our online catalog.

Stay home and warm if you can, but if you have to go out, be sure to bundle up!

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Join the Great Michigan Read!

Every two years, the Michigan Humanities Council chooses a book to be the Great Michigan Read.  A statewide committee searches for a new book that was either written by a Michigan author or set in Michigan that will help us connect as Michiganders by exploring our history, present, and future.

For 2013-14, the Great Michigan Read is Annie’s Ghosts: A Journey into a Family Secret by Detroit native Steve Luxenberg.  The book has been described as ‘part memoir, part detective story, and part history.’ It follows the author’s search for the truth after he learns that his mother – who’d always claimed to be an only child – had a sister who died in a mental institution.  A story about family secrets, poverty, illness, mental and physical disabilities, immigration, surviving the Holocaust, and genealogy, Annie’s Ghosts gives insights into how our family history defines us and revealed secrets can change us.

At the Spring Lake District Library, we’ve put together a selection of programs related to the Great Michigan Read as well as having copies of the book available for check out.  We also have Annie’s Ghosts available as a Book Club in a Bag which includes 10 copies as well as discussion questions and author information.

Final-GMIR-logo-smlFor our first program scheduled to complement the Great Michigan Read book, we’re welcoming Martin Lowenberg to the library on Wednesday, January 22 Tuesday, May 13 at 6:30pm.  Mr. Lowenberg will speak about his experiences as a child and teenager during the Holocaust when he survived five concentration camps before the war ended, and he emigrated to the United States.  We’re honored to have Mr. Lowenberg here to speak to us.

On Saturday, February 8 at 1pm, the library will be hosting a genealogy workshop on how to use the US Census records to help uncover your family’s history.  Attendees are asked to bring a laptop or other wireless device to use in hands-on research following the class.

And finally on Wednesday, April 9 at 7pm, the author of Annie’s Ghosts, Steve Luxenberg, will be at the Spring Lake District Library for a presentation and book signing.  Come on your own or bring your book club, but don’t miss this one!  The Bookman will have copies of Annie’s Ghosts available for purchase if you don’t have a copy of the book for Mr. Luxenberg to sign.

The Great Michigan Read is presented by the Michigan Humanities Council with support from Meijer and the National Endowment for the Humanities.  We hope Annie’s Ghosts and the programs we’ve planned to complement it inspire conversation for you.