Ransom District Library
Ransom District Library
Ransom District Library

Library Services

What can we do for you? Scroll through and see the wide range of services that Ransom District Library provides to the Plainwell community.

3-D printing
Books for Sale
Books, movies and more to browse and to lend
Coffee  (coming soon!)
Concerts, programs and speakers
Collaboration between libraries
Copy, fax, lamination and scan services
Digital conversion of old cassettes and movies to CD, DVD or flash drive
Digital resources: eBooks, downloadable audiobooks and more
Exam proctoring
Local history, archives and genealogy resources
Meeting rooms and study spaces
Michigan Electronic Library (MeL) catalog and databases                 
Online access to your library account and the library catalog
Notary services
Public computers and broad wifi coverage in and around the library
Rocket Languages
Tax forms
 


3-D printing

3-D printers are machines that use a computer-controlled nozzle to heat material which is then deposited very slowly in layers to build up the final model. 3-D printing is being used regularly in manufacturing. Click here if you would like to see a time-lapse video of the printer in action. You can explore the software used to discover and design models, and then print them, with assistance from library staff. Perhaps you will be introduced to a new career path or invent a useful gadget by experimenting at the library! Contact us for details.


Books for sale

The Friends of Ransom District Library has a room of their own in the new library! Books, DVDs, CDs, and audio books are available to browse and purchase every day during library hours. Most books are $1 or less. Every purchase helps support your library!


Books, movies and more to browse and to lend

Ransom District Library offers a wide variety of materials for your use:

  • Audiobooks
  • Board games
  • Books for adults, teens and children
  • Cake pans
  • eMaterials--downloadable directly to your smart device or computer
    • audiobooks
    • comics
    • ebooks
    • movies
    • magazines
    • music
    • newspapers
    • TV shows
  • Genealogy, local history, and archival materials
  • Interactive movie kits
  • Large print books
  • Movies and TV series on DVD
  • Newspapers
  • Print magazines
  • Ransom Notes: community writing notebooks
  • Tablets for children in Preschool-2nd grade

Coffee

Coming soon to the new library facility! 


Concerts, programs and speakers

Part of what makes Ransom District Library a vibrant part of the community is hosting a variety of activities and events that educate and entertain. The library offers something for all ages, from infancy through adulthood. Our popular concert series takes place every year after the Super Bowl, bringing light and life into the winter doldrums. Programs, where you participate, range from an annual winter reading contest, fitness classes, crafts and hobbies and book discussions. Speakers visit regularly to inform you about various topics, such as author visits, local history, self-improvement and more.


Collaboration between libraries

In order to serve you better, Ransom District Library collaborates with libraries statewide to make it easier for you to get what you need.  This is done through reciprocal borrowing agreements with nearby libraries and interlibrary loan.

Reciprocal Borrowing: Reciprocal borrowing agreements between libraries allow patrons from one library to obtain a library card from another library. You must present both the library card from your home library and a piece of valid ID when you register for a library card.

Ransom Library has borrowing agreements with:

Inter-library loan: If the library does not have a book or other item which you need, then it is possible to contact another library who owns it and request a copy. MelCat, the Michigan Electronic Library Catalog, connects you with more than 170 libraries statewide, increasing your access to millions of books, CDs, DVDs and other materials. For your convenience, anything you order through "Mel" can be picked up and returned at Ransom.

Go to mel.org and search for the title or author. When you have found the item you need, click on “Get This Item From Mel.” You will need your library card number to request a copy. You can also contact the library and ask a staff member for assistance.


Copy, fax, lamination and scan services

Copies: The library has one copy machine for public use. The machine will make color or black and white copies. Color copies are $1.00 per page; black and white copies on letter or legal sized paper are $0.10 per page. Black and white copies on large (11 by 17) inch paper are $0.25 per page.

Faxes: You may send and receive faxes from the Library's fax machine. The fee is $1.00 per page for faxes sent and received anywhere in the United States. There is no charge for cover sheets, which are available for you to use.

Lamination: Laminating is also available for $1.00 per page.

Scans: The copy machine has a built-in scanner. Scans are free of charge. When you scan a document, it drops into a folder on the library's shared server so you can attach it to an email or copy it onto a flash drive. We suggest you delete it from the computer when you are finished with it to protect your privacy. Items are deleted on a reset only once per day.


Digital conversion of old cassettes and movies to CD, DVD or flash drive

Uncover long lost memories by digitizing Super 8 movies, VHS videos, transparencies and even audio cassette tapes. Contact us to make an appointment.


Digital resources: eBooks, downloadable audiobooks and more 

"Check out" and download audiobooks, e-books, magazines, music and video from Hoopla, Overdrive or RBDigital. These three services all have different requirements for logging in. For each one, however, you must have a resident's library card in order to use it. If you have a reciprocal library card (from Allegan, Delton, Kalamazoo, Martin, Otsego, Parchment or Portage)  please use your home library card in order to access the sites. Your home library card is your original card, from the library district in which you reside. In other words, if you live in Martin, use your Martin card.

To find out more, visit our eBooks and audiobooks page, or contact us for assistance.


Exam proctoring

The Library is happy to proctor exams for people involved in distance-learning programs. Please contact the Library about having your exam proctored before making arrangements with your school.


Local history, archives and genealogy resources

The Sandy Stamm Local History Room, named after our venerable Plainwell expert, contains historic local newspapers, yearbooks, family histories and more. Our materials complement our subscription to Ancestry.com Library Edition and offer a quiet place to do your studying or research. It offers a table with four chairs - the perfect size for just a few people. If you would like to reserve this room, give us a call or use the Meeting Room Reservation Form and make sure to specify that you are interested in the Genealogy Room.

Sandy herself can usually be found in the library on Thursdays from 10 am until 2 pm. If you have questions for her, it is best to leave a message with library staff.

Local historic newspapers are now available electronically! The electronic format, consisting of PDF files, is available in the library on all public computers.  (Note: this is not accessible online.) The electronic papers are searchable (such a wonderful, time-saving feature!!) and can be printed.

For more information about this unique corner of the library, head to the archives page.


Meeting rooms and study spaces

There are numerous spaces that can be reserved in the new facility:

  • The Hill Performance Room
  • The Gretta A. Burchfield Conference Room
  • The Sandy Stamm Local History Room
  • Three study rooms

Please read our Meeting Room Policy before filling out the Meeting Room Form.


Michigan Electronic Library (MeL) catalog and databases

Help your kids with homework, encourage your teen to practice for the SAT or armed services test, create a resume, repair your car, study for your GED, research a health problem and more! There is a vast amount of useful information right at your fingertips, available to everyone who lives in the state of Michigan. The Michigan Electronic Library (MeL) can help you find the resources you need.

MelCat, the Michigan Electronic Library Catalog, connects you with more than 170 libraries statewide, increasing your access to millions of books, CDs, DVDs and other materials. For your convenience, anything you order through "MeL" can be picked up and returned at Ransom.

You can place a request, check due dates and request item renewals online from home! Go to www.mel.org, click MyMel to log in. Or go to MyMel directly. Just select your library (Ransom District Library) from the drop down list and log in with your name and library card number.


Online access to your library account and the library catalog

You can access the library catalog from home! Look for it at the top of our website, or by selecting the "Catalogs and eMaterials" menu and selecting "Library Catalog."

You can start by scrolling over "Library Catalog," then clicking "My Account." Just enter your library card number as both your username and password. Once into your account, you may view  and renew the materials you have currently checked out.

You may also reserve materials online. Just search our catalog, locate the item and enter your library barcode number for your username and password. This can also be done through the catalog computers inside the library, or you can contact us for assistance.


Notary services

The library has a Notary Public on staff. The service is provided for free. Please call to check the Notary's availability and schedule an appointment.


Public computers and broad wifi coverage in and around the library

The library has desktop computers available for public use. They have internet access, a CD drive, printing ability, and Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Publisher.)

  • Computers are available on a first come, first served basis.
  • A library card is needed to access the computers.
  • Guest passes are available for all library visitors, including those who forgot their library card!

Printing is available. Black and white prints on letter or legal sized paper are $0.10 per page. Black and white prints on large (11 by 17) inch paper are $0.25 per page.

When the new library was built, expansive wifi improvements were added. There is wifi access throughout the building, and the signal is available on the patios on the west side of the building as well as in the parking lot! You have wifi even when the library is closed.


Rocket Languages

Rocket Languages is an award winning interactive online language learning system. You can download or stream over 62 hours of interactive instruction in Spanish, Arabic, French, German, Mandarin Chinese, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, and American Sign Language. Rocket Languages allows you to learn on your own terms and in your own time. You will be speaking and improving your language skills with every lesson by taking part in the modern, everyday conversations that make up our Interactive Audio Course. In addition, you will learn to speak the language naturally with our language and culture lessons and you can also build on your vocabulary and improve your audio recognition of common words and phrases

Rocket Languages is your ticket to:

  • Speaking with a perfect accent!
  • Understanding when spoken to
  • Cutting learning time up to 50%
  • and having FUN while doing it!


To begin, click here.


Tax forms

Tax forms are available in the library lobby and at the drive-up window until the end of April. There is no charge for tax forms. Availability of tax forms is dependent on when the government ships them; they have usually arrived by the end of January. Printed instruction booklets are no longer available from the IRS. Instructions and lesser used forms are available on the internet, and staff can print them for you, free of charge.    


 Contact us for more details on any and all of these services!

 

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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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