Special Events


Let’s Chat Breakout Sessions

Less formal than a breakout session, but more structured than an unconference, Let’s Chat sessions are a chance for important library topics to be discussed. The topics and moderators have been selected for you, but you get to choose your participation level. Jump in and share your thoughts, opinions and experiences – or sit back and take some great notes about what others are doing in the library community.  Moderators will share what they are doing and why and then open the floor for interaction by the audience.  Add your two cents and Let’s Chat!


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Willkommen to Frankenmuth!
5:00 - 6:00 p.m.
(Welcome to Frankenmuth!)
How does winning fabulous prizes for completing a scavenger hunt sound?  How about if free drinks and snacks are provided?  Join the Great Lakes Bay Regional Convention and Visitor’s Bureau as they welcome you to Frankenmuth.  This early bird welcome reception is free and open to any Spring Institute Conference attendee – no pre-registration required!  Meet up with your colleagues and network in a fun new way as you learn more about Frankenmuth and the Bavarian Inn.  Looking for more?  Stick around after the welcome reception and help SI give back at our Evening with an Author event for only $10.00!
Sponsored by:
Evening with an Author
Ticketed Event:  $10.00 per person
6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

SI presents its first Evening with an Author fundraising event.  Join us Wednesday, March 29, 2017 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. as we mix and mingle with several local Michigan authors.  Learn about their works, eat a little, drink a little and know that 100% of your $10 ticket price is helping SI Give Back to the community. Half of the ticket price will go to the MLA Scholarship fund where your dollars will help another library professional afford a future conference. The other half will support local children’s literacy efforts through the Flint and Genesee Literacy Network.  Kick off the conference right by meeting these local Michigan authors:

Ruth McNally Barshaw:  Leopold the Lion, The Ellie McDoodle Diaries
Clay Boura:  Leave it to Beamer Series
Cheri Hallwood:  Winter’s First Snowflake, The Curious Polka-Dot Present, One Wish for Winifred Witch, Frogwilla, A Treefrog's Story
Linda McLean:  Wanda and Winky
Beth Rodgers:  Freshman Fourteen and Sweet Fifteen
Michael Spradlin:  The Enemy Above, Into the Killing Seas, I.Q.: Alcatraz
Samantha Wilcoxson:  Plantagenet Princess, Tudor Queen and Faithful Traitor


Thursday, March 30, 2017


Cool Things My Library Does, Sponsored by Vox Books
This is a free event, but pre-registration is required
5:00 – 6:30 p.m.

Discover and explore what “cool things” other libraries in our great state have going on!  Browse exciting projects and new ideas at each table. Spend some time learning about the ones that pique your interest and find out how you can implement these great programs, projects and concepts at your own library. This strolling reception will inspire your mind while filling your belly!  Light appetizers and beverages available.

Event Sponsored by:


Check out these cool things...
All About That Book
Jill Lansky, Kalamazoo Public Library; Andrea Vernola, Kalamazoo Public Library
Branching Out:  Programs in a Box at the Lapeer District Library
Dena Moscheck, Lapeer District Library; Lorry Traver, Lapeer District Library – Metamora Branch
Family Tech Night
Hillary Berry, Paw Paw District Library; Whitney Hagen, Paw Paw District Library
Huge Programs You Can Handle
Claire Lopiccolo, Rochester Hills Public Library
Let Your Geek Flag Fly!
Nisa Kesseler, Petoskey District Library
Let’s Play
Diana Wenger, Grand Rapids Public Library
Low Cost, Zero Talent Photo Booths to Promote Library Programs
David Palma, Kent District Library
Library + Robotics Team = Awesome Partnership
Janice Heilman, Howell Carnegie District Library; Kim Portuesi, Howell Robotics
Making a Makerspace Work for any Budget!
Dawn Heerspink, Kent District Library; Courtnei Moyses, Kent District Library
Pick 2 Tuesdays
Ashley Lehman, Ferndale Area District Library; Jordan Wright, Ferndale Area District Library
Robot Invasion:  Incorporating Ozobots into Youth Programming
Killian Weston, Bloomfield Township Public Library
STEAM Maker kits
Kara Pauley, Dowagiac District Library
Ann Chapman, Capital Area District Library - Haslett
Teen Filmmaker Festival
Stewart Fritz, Kalamazoo Public Library

Friday, March 31, 2017

Just Lunch - Trivia Challenge
This is a free event, but pre-registration is required

12:20 – 1:50 p.m.

Net·work (verb):   interacting with other people to exchange information and develop contacts.

Networking.  The mere word becomes the antithesis of fun for most people, but it sometimes is a necessity to further your career.  Join your colleagues in an ultimate anti-networking lunch.  This fun, lively and entertaining lunch will make you forget that you’re, dare we say, networking!  This table vs. table trivia challenge will offer opportunities to collaborate, connect and engage with your fellow librarians. Winners take home bragging rights but everyone leaves as a networking champion!