@ Your Library

Recent library events, news and more.

Dragon Fiddles and Mouth Harps

Storytime with Mr. Steve & Friends started off with a bang with special guest Professor Code from Western Michigan University's School of Music. 

Professor Code shared four different instruments with us:  the Swedish nyckelharpa (keyed fiddle), the Norwegian hardingfele (Harding fiddle), the Norwegian seljefløyta (willow flute) and the munnharpa (mouth harp). 

/uploadedimages/Covers/david-code-010-160.jpgBean Bag Balance Record!

He also broke our bean bag balance record, balancing 13 bean bags on his head while counting in Norwegian!

Join us for books, rhymes, crafts, parachute games, and a surprise special guest at the next Storytime with Mr. Steve & Friends on Monday, October 26 at 6:30 pm at the Central Library.


Storytime with Mr. Steve & Friends
Steve S

Extend the Growing Season

By the time autumn arrives, many gardens are looking a bit spent and shabby. Gardeners themselves may feel a bit spent and shabby, too, but now’s the time to muster energy and prepare for next year’s growing season.

Bruce Shultz, a long-time gardener and volunteer with Fair Food Matters, spoke at Oshtemo on Sept. 14 sharing tips for how to put the garden to bed. At this time of year, we should clean up debris from annual plants, but leave parts from perennials in place. Add amendments to the soil — compost, fertilizers, leaves, lime or the like — so these nutrients have time to settle in over the winter. Autumn is the time to plant cover crops or relocate bulbs and spring flowering perennials. Pruning, too, can be accomplished now.

But Shultz also encouraged us to think about gardening year-round, not as an activity between Memorial Day and Labor Day. “Why put the garden to bed at all?” he asked.

Extend the growing season with protection. Row covers, cold frames, tunnels, cloches and straw can give you an early start in spring and fend off autumn frosts. Another way to extend the growing season is to bring it indoors. Shultz starts his garden by planting seeds and letting them get a good start under grow lights. He’s out planting peas in March as soon as the soil is soft. When the weather turns cool, in comes the large potted rosemary shrub. And, they may be old-fashioned, but they definitely work: root cellars. They store produce at a cool but not freezing temperature.

To read more about gardening year round, check out these books by Eliot Coleman.


Bruce Shultz, Fair Food Matters volunteer

The Law at Your Fingertips

As a law librarian, I’m always on the lookout for information sources (both print and online) that a lay person can read and understand without having to have a law degree. It can often be a challenge to impart complex legal concepts to the general public. Law library staff relies heavily on referring library users to our extensive collection of free bookmarks, brochures and booklets, many of which are available on racks next to the law library's entrance. We try to put the information in your hands so that you can empower yourself with the knowledge that can inform your actions and decisions. Some of our most popular handouts include: Peace of MindTenants and Landlords: A Practical GuideKalamazoo County's Friend of the Court HandbookSmall Claims Court, and many others that span a wide range of legal topics.