Ransom District Library
Ransom District Library
Ransom District Library

Library News & Events

Library Events
New Genealogy Computer (with webcam!)
Computer Assistance & Classes
Visiting Patron
Michigan Activity Pass

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Library Events

  • A Widow's Guide to Healing: Gentle Support and Advice for the First Five Years - Sat., Sept. 30 at 11 a.m.
    Presented by Kristin Meekhof
    Kristin's work has appeared in Organic Spa magazine, Huffington Post, The Shriver Report, Intent, The Elephant Journal, Psychology Today, and ESME.  She is honored to be a part of the book Live Happy: Ten Practices for Choosing Joy.  This free workshop and book talk will cover healthy ways to cope with grief and loss.  Registration required.

  • Family History Month!
    October is designated as "Family History Month," and genealogists everywhere have adopted the month as their own. Whether you're new to genealogy, or have devoted a lifetime to it, celebrate Family History Month with Ransom Library at one or all of these classes.
    Please stop by or call (269) 685-8024 to register for these classes.
    • Genealogy 101 - Wed., Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.
      Interested in beginning some research on your family history? Feeling overwhelmed with where to begin? This class will help familiarize you with navigating Ancestry Library Edition, talk about the materials available to you within Ransom District Library, and provide you with some other websites to help you out. Learn the basics of genealogy (along with some tips and tricks!) to get started on your family tree!

    • Genealogy Lock-In – Fri., Oct. 13th, 5-8 p.m.
      Join us after hours to work on your family history!  We will settle in to a quiet, closed library and get some serious genealogy research done.  A few people will be on hand to answer your questions if you hit any brick walls during the night.  Our genealogy room and archives will be open for use, Ancestry Library Edition will be available, and there will be refreshments.  A limited amount of computers will be available for use, but you are encouraged to bring your own device.  Please call the library at (269) 685-8024 to sign up and let us know if you will be using one of our computers or your own by Wednesday, October 11th.

    • Digging Into Your Past – Wed., Oct. 25th at 7 p.m.
      Cemeteries are an often underused resource for genealogy research.  Portrayed as creepy places to spend your time, it can come as a surprise how useful they actually are.  Join us just before Halloween and listen to local historian Lynda Hawley talk about how to get the most out of your research by visiting cemeteries, why they are important to maintain, and how to get involved.

  • The Vikings Are Coming - Sat., Oct. 14 from noon-4 p.m.
    Presented by Norsemen of Michigan Living History Society
    The Vikings are coming to Ransom District Library.
    The Norsemen of Michigan Living History Society will be setting up a miniature camp to portray Viking history on Saturday, October 14 from ???.  Patrons will able to witness everything from blacksmithing to weaving and authentic cooking demonstrations, as well as a full armory of historical weapons.

    While there will be no raiding or looting at this camp, patrons will get a chance to learn about Viking history and the backdrop for the Viking’s show and popular books such as American Gods by Neil Gaiman and Bernard Cornwell’s books.

    Make sure to check out our Viking book display to get you ready to meet the Vikings.

  • Paranormal Ghost Tales With MiPRO - Thurs., Oct. 26 at 7 p.m.
    Back by popular demand Michigan Paranormal Research Organization will be sharing their latest cases. Do you believe in ghosts? Find out with these real life ghost hunters.

    Michigan Paranormal Research Organization (MiPRO) is a group of like-minded individuals who seek to find explanations to unknown or unusual events that occur throughout the southwestern corner of Michigan.  Formed in 2010 they have exhaustively conducted several investigations on local homes, businesses, and cemeteries looking for explanations to activity reported by others who enlist their services.

  • Cutting Cheese with the Cheese Lady - Thurs., Nov. 2 at 7 p.m.
    Presented by Natalie Fuller
    The Cheese Lady will be visiting Ransom District Library sharing the history of cheese, styles, cheesy stories and of course some tasty samples!

    After many successful seasons at local farmer’s markets, Natalie Fuller and her father, Terry St. Louis, opened The Cheese Lady store on March 17, 2011.    The location in the heart of Kalamazoo’s Texas Corners has provided the perfect setting for a unique cheese experience. 
    Registration is required and space is limited.

  • Unraveling Medicare - Thurs., Nov. 9 at 1 p.m.
    Presenter Joe Garcia of SMG Health
    New to Medicare and not sure about your options then this no pressure workshop is for you. This free workshop will go over the Do’s and Don’ts of the Medicare Open Enrollment process with a question and answer time afterwards.  Presenter Joe Garcia of SMG Health will share his knowledge and experience of over 20 years in the health industry.

  • Are You Ready to Serve Your Community? - Thurs., Nov. 16, 2017 at 7 p.m.
    Don Black, Allegan County Commission Talk
    Residents of Plainwell, Gun Plain Township, Martin Township, Martin Village and Wayland Township are all in District #7 and are invited to find out what it takes to serve their community in an informal talk given by current Allegan County Commissioner Don Black.
    Don Black whose term ends in 2018 will be encouraging patrons to serve in their community and answering questions regarding his term.  He will be covering common points such as why not serve your community; how you can you make a difference; are you fiscally responsible, and what if you want to and have never held public office?

  • Color Me Calm “Adult” Coloring Christmas Edition - Thurs., Dec. 6 at 7 p.m.
    Release your inner child and calm down right before the holidays with this special “Christmas” coloring get-together.  We will be pulling out the coloring books and providing adult snacks and beverages but don’t worry there won’t be holiday music!


Ransom Library Begins Seed Exchange

A seed exchange is a self-perpetuating collection of heirloom seeds.  Donations of saved seeds are needed to start our library.  The more seeds in the library, the more others can experience growing their own food.  Seeds will be accepted if they are properly dried and identified.  If donating commercial seeds, please be sure that the seeds are non-hybrid and non-Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) seeds.

The seed library has officially launched!  Please stop by the circulation desk and ask us about it!

NEW Computer in the Genealogy Room

Ransom Library has added a new computer that is set up with a webcam in our genealogy room!  This will allow patrons the ability to conduct online job interviews or Skype with friends or family in relative privacy.

On Wednesday mornings, stop by and say hi to our Genealogy and Local History Department!  This is a great opportunity to learn about genealogy from our experts!

Computer Assistance & Classes

BOOK A GEEK! New at Ransom Library!  Book a private tutor for your technology questions!  Need a little help with your laptop, figuring out Excel, or downloading digital books?  Call the library at 685-8024 to set up a 30-minute session!

Visiting Patron
For Residents & Nonresidents of Ransom Library

Why Visiting Patron?
Libraries that participate in the Visiting Patron program provide borrowing privileges to other libraries’ patrons without requiring reciprocal borrowing agreements or fees. VP is similar to MeLCat borrowing but it bypasses the shipping as it allows for the immediate pickup of materials. VP replaces the Michicard program.

Visiting Patron has many conveniences:

  • Quick checkout—your home library card is already in the statewide system.
  • Using Visiting Patron will reduce the number of (library) cards in your wallet.
  • Visiting Patron provides immediate pickup on borrowed items.
  • Convenient returns—your home library will ship materials back to the lending library for free.
  • Late fines are assessed by your home library. No owing fines in multiple places.
  • Items show up in your MyMEL and you can renew in MyMEL.

How to Use Visiting Patron:
Take your ID and Ransom Library card to any participating Visiting Patron library and check out their materials directly! (Tip: Be sure your fines are below $10 and your account is not expired before you go!)

VP applies to the following residents of the Ransom Library district: City of Plainwell, Gun Plain Township, Portion of Cooper Township in Plainwell, Otsego, and Gull Lake School Districts, and all other Plainwell Schools Students.

Refer to the http://elibrary.mel.org/screens/participating.html for libraries where you can be a VP!

Nonresidents with the following local Home Libraries may use their library card at Ransom as a Visiting Patron: Allegan Library, Henika (Wayland) Library, J.C. Wheeler (Martin) Library. If your home library is not on this list please refer to: http://elibrary.mel.org/screens/participating.html

Non-Participating Local Libraries: Otsego, Parchment, Portage, Kalamazoo, Delton, Richland. If one of these is your home library, ask the staff to consider participating.

Michigan Activity Pass

Looking for a fun, educational or outdoor experience for the family this summer?  Want to save some money?  The 2017-18 Michigan Activity Pass includes over 400 parks, cultural attractions, and other venues throughout the lower and upper peninsulas!

The 2017-18 Michigan Activity Pass (MAP) runs from May 24, 2017 through May 23, 2018 and will enable library cardholders to print a pass to hundreds of Michigan's state parks, historic sites, cultural attractions, campgrounds, and recreation areas throughout the lower and upper peninsulas.  Passes can be checked out online at the Michigan Activity Pass website listed below from either at home or the library.  Michigan State Park passes (previously offered through MI Big Green Gym program) are offered at no cost and are good for a one-time entry.  There will be five passes available per attraction per library each week.  Library patrons must print out their pass, which are good for seven days.

MAP Link for Passes: michiganactivitypass.info


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  • Reserve Notices - (As Needed)
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  • Overdue Notices - (As Needed)
  • Ransom eNewsletters - (As Needed)
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Ransom District Library - 180 S. Sherwood Ave. - Plainwell, Michigan 49080
Phone: 269-685-8024 - Hours: Mon-Thurs: 10-9 - Fri & Sat: 10-5 - Sun: 1-5

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