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Take a trip back in time during free historical tour July 18 and August 22

Take a trip back in time during free historical tour July 18 and August 22

GRAND HAVEN, Mich.- Grand Haven’s waterfront looks very different from what it was a century ago.

In the 1870s, passenger steamers, commercial fish tugs and car ferries filled the water, and steam driven locomotives passed through town.  Several downtown buildings still maintain their original facades and ornamentation, which you can learn about during a free tour of historical downtown Grand Haven.

Tri-Cities Historical Museum is organizing the free tours, which will take place July 18 and August 22 at 6 p.m.  The hour-long event begins at the Depot Museum of Transportation, located at 1 S. Harbor.  For more information, call the Tri-Cities Historical Museum at (616) 842-0700.

Truck Petting Zoo stops at Spring Lake District Library

Truck Petting Zoo stops at Spring Lake District Library

SPRING LAKE, Mich.--Is your child fascinated by trucks?

Spring Lake District Library has a truck petting zoo scheduled on Tuesday, July 16 from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. for children of all ages.  Various types of trucks, machinery and work vehicles will be on display in the Harvest Bible Chapel parking lot next door to the library. Children will be able to touch the trucks, ask questions of the drivers and take photographs. In addition, the first 80 children will receive a plastic construction hat to take home. Visit Youth Services inside the library to find truck books and a craft.

For more information, please contact the library at (616) 846-5770, ext. 134. The library is located at 123 E. Exchange Street in Spring Lake.

Summer Reading Club event teaches kids how to make a terrarium

Summer Reading Club event teaches kids how to make a terrarium

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. -- Plants are blooming at Loutit District Library (LDL) on July 16 as Youth Librarian Assistant Susan Trittin demonstrates how to make a terrarium that grows tiny plants using a two-litter bottle.

Children ages seven and up will learn how to make their own bottle terrarium during Trittin’s program, “Groovy Gardens." Trittin will also highlight how their terrarium recycles its own water, while showing the kids how to recognize when to add water.

The program begins at 2 p.m. in LDL’s Program Room A. Materials for this program will be supplied.

School is over, but the need for blood donations is not

School is over, but the need for blood donations is not

Now that school is out, the need for blood donations is even greater.

High school and college students donate about 20 percent of the blood collected through the American Red Cross, so the organization is anticipating a drop in donations this summer.

“Just because summer is here, it doesn’t mean donating blood is on vacation, too,” said Todd Kulman, Communications Program Manager for the Great Lakes Region of the American Red Cross. “You might find there’s a lot of fun to be had in donating blood, or even sponsoring a blood drive of your own.”

The American Red Cross’ Great Lakes Blood Service Region must collect about 650 units of blood a day to meet patient need in hospitals.

Michigan Pirate Festival in Grand Haven set for August 5-11

Michigan Pirate Festival in Grand Haven set for August 5-11

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. -- Loutit District Library (LDL) and Harbor Island will be the port of swashbuckling fun for the whole family as the 7th annual Michigan Pirate Festival invades Grand Haven, August 5 through August 11.

With their theme, “Pirates Through the Ages,” pirate re-enactors from historical to fantasy personas will come from around Michigan and the Midwest to entertain everyone, from young powder monkeys to seasoned buccaneers. New to this year’s festival is the Mermaid Queen with a group of her mermaids. This is the first performance for the mermaid group in Michigan.

The pillagin’ and plunderin’ begins August 5 at 9 a.m. when LDL opens. Kids are invited to pick up a treasure map from the chest located at the Library’s Youth Services Area.

Library Summer Reading Programs present author and illustrator July 1

Library Summer Reading Programs present author and illustrator July 1

Children’s author and illustrator Aaron Zenz will share one of his books and give some tips about drawing during two library presentations July 1, as part of summer reading programs.

Materials for his programs will be supplied. Zenz will present at the Loutit District Library in Grand Haven at 10 a.m. The program will be repeated at the Spring Lake District Library, 123 E. Exchange Street, at 2 p.m.

Zenz has a passion for the art of storytelling. His understanding of the craft has been shaped by the roles he has held as author, illustrator, fine artist, college instructor, graphic recorder, and designer of multimedia, characters and toys. He creates illustrations with colored pencil, employing uncommon methods to achieve rich vivid colors.

This summer reading program event is a collaborative effort of the Spring Lake and Loutit District libraries and the Tri-Cities Historical Museum.

Cyclists raise more than $3,000 for Freedom In Motion

Cyclists raise more than $3,000 for Freedom In Motion

Four West Michigan cyclists are back home after traveling more than 270 miles to ensure others have bicycles.

On June 20, Derek Rust and Ben Hyink of Grand Haven and Todd Stelma and Doug Crysler of Rockford rode  from Rockford to Mackinac City to raise funds and awareness of the non-profit organization, Freedom In Motion.  Freedom In Motion volunteers take in donated bicycles, repairing them and redistributing them to those in need.

During their more than 15 hour journey, the four cyclists maxed out a $1,500 donor match, thanks to last minute donations.  Rust says calls are still coming in from potential volunteers, donors and clients.

For more information about Freedom In Motion, click here.