The Fremont Area District Library is planning to host several fun, FREE, and festive events in December for the whole family.
We’ll host a Book Tasting: Best of the Season Bistro event on Thursday, December 1st from 3:30-5:30. Join us for cookies and cocoa in the Community Room while you browse new fiction, new teen fiction, forthcoming books and a few seasonal favorite reads. Next up for the holidays, we’ll have Drop-In Gift Wrapping set up in our Community Room from Dec. 2nd-23rd. Get all of your Christmas wrapping done -- FREE! We'll provide the gift wrap, gift bags, etc. Show up in the Community Room when it's available (check the meeting room calendar on our website or give us a call first to make sure it's open) and wrap your gifts! For our Movie Monday in December, we’ll show A Christmas Story (Rated PG; 93 min) on Dec. 12th at 2:00 p.m. Snacks provided!
Toddler Storytime, for babies and toddlers up to age 3, will have its last Fall session on Wednesday, Nov. 30th at 10:00 a.m., and Family Storytime for children up to age 5 will have its last Fall session on Thursday, Dec. 1st at 10:00 a.m. Kids can make a special Christmas craft to take home on Saturday, Dec. 10th between 10:00 and 1:00 p.m. at our Christmas Craft Saturday. Our Saturday Storytime in December will be a special Christmas Storytime, where we’ll share some favorite Christmas stories together. Join us on Dec. 17th at 11:00 a.m. for this festive Storytime. We’ll be showing an Afternoon Christmas Movie on Thursday, December 22nd at 3:30 p.m. Snacks will be served, and all are welcome.
Fit for Life Exercise Classes will continue on Mondays and Wednesdays from 12:00-1:00 p.m. through Dec. 14th. This is a free and low-impact exercise class for all levels of fitness. Junk Journaling for ages 10 and up will be from 6:00-8:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 8th. The Daytime Book Group will meet on December 1st at 12:30 p.m. to discuss Secret of Snow by Viola Shipman. The Wednesday Readers Book Group will meet on Monday, December 12th at 7:00 p.m. to discuss Redbird Christmas by Fannie Flagg. The Non-Fiction Book Discussion will meet Monday, December 19th at 6:00 p.m. to discuss Christmas in Plains by Jimmy Carter. Anyone is welcome to join these book groups. Books for these groups are available at the library’s front desk ahead of the meeting if you’d like to check out a copy and join the group.
For more information about any of these events, please contact the library at 231-924-3480 or visit www.fremontlibrary.net.
Photo and article by Donna Iverson
When it comes to holiday plants, poinsettia is Number 1. It is the best selling potted plant sold in this country. Over 70 million poinsettia plants are purchased this time of the year with most of them commercially grown in California.
Poinsettia is native to the Americas, specifically southern Mexico and Guatemala. There it grows wild as a perennial shrub or small tree, reaching two to thirteen feet in height.
Like many plants and animals, the wild poinsettia is losing its habitat as the forest land that it prefers is eroding. Soon only cultivated varieties will be available, of which there are 100 varieties and counting. The plant is named after botanist Joel Poinsett, who was the first US ambassador to Mexico. He introduced the plant in South Carolina when he sent cuttings in 1824.
Two hundred years later, poinsettias are available everywhere, including garden centers, farmers markets and in grocery stores.
As for caring for poinsettias, they need about six hours of bright indirect light and to be kept away from drafts. If these needs are met, poinsettia plants will last until Valentine's Day. The brighter the light, the more intense the floral coloring. When purchasing a poinsettia, be sure there is a hole in the bottom of the pot, as it needs good drainage,
Newer varieties also come in a variety of flower colors in addition to the traditional red. These include white, purple, salmon and variegated. As a side note, the bright flowers are actually bracts, or modified leaves.
Poinsettias are not toxic to people or animals although eating too many leaves can cause nausea and vomiting. Also the stems ooze a milky sap which can cause skin irritation in some people.
If you haven’t purchased a poinsettia plant yet, you might want to do so soon. Then you can celebrate Poinsettia Day on December 12..a holiday declared in 1851.
For more information on the care and feeding of poinsettias, check out https://gardenerspath.com/plants/houseplants/poinsettia-after-holidays/
A full moon hike northbound on the North Country Trail will begin at Loda Lake on December 8 at 8pm. Guests will park at the Loda Lake parking lot by 7:50 pm and the event is slated to last until 11pm. This event, facilitated by The Sunhart Center of Ecology & Design, is catered toward adults. Instructions are to dress warm and bring a flashlight. The hike is free although donations are accepted. Transportation assistance is may be available upon request.
“The new ‘After Dark’ event series is designed to connect individuals to the more traditional and spiritual aspects of nature and our world,” states Carmen Alfaro, who will lead the hike. “I hope to give individuals the opportunity to really listen to and interact with our plant and animal relatives in a way we often pass by in our daily lives.”
Loda Lake is a 72-acre preserve located in the Huron-Manistee National Forest, and is managed by the Federated Garden Clubs of Michigan. It has evolved into a unique haven for botanists and wildflower enthusiasts. North of Loda Lake, the hike will pass through secluded Manistee National Forest lands.
“I have walked this path many times and I am always amazed by the spirit of this place. I am excited to share the sacredness with others," added Alfaro.
Loda Lake is north of White Cloud. From north on M-37, turn left on 5 Mile Road, then north on Felch. The sanctuary entrance is one mile north on the right. As part of the National Forest, there is a self-service fee to park at Loda Lake. A daily, weekly or annual Huron-Manistee Recreation vehicle pass can be purchased from the Baldwin Ranger field office at 650 N Michigan Avenue in Baldwin.
Carmen Alfaro is the owner of The Sunhart Center of Ecology & Design. The Sunhart Center serves the greater Newaygo County and West Michigan areas in eco-restorative landscaping, ecological consultation and Indigenous environmental stewardship. More information about The Sunhart Center and future events can be found on its Facebook page @Sunhart Center of Ecology and Design. Contact Carmen at (231) 450-4590 or email Carmen@sunhart.org.
Photo and article by Donna Iverson
It’s November and some autumn flowers are still blooming. These include chrysanthemums, snapdragons, marigolds, petunias, zinnias, and one of my favorites: calendula.
A member of the daisy family, calendula will bloom until the first hard frost. Sometimes called pot marigolds, calendulas are easy to grow, low maintenance, prolific bloomers, and attractive to pollinators, like bees and butterflies.
Planted in early spring as seeds, calendula blooms in about six weeks. Deadheading increases flower production but come late fall, let the flowers go to seed. The plant will reseed itself. During the summer months, the flowers make beautiful cut flower bouquets. Companion plants include everything but dill, potatoes and parsnips.
Native to the Mediterranean area and east Asia, calendula is a popular medicinal plant used to treat skin conditions. Calendula cream soothes skin rashes and other skin irritations. It is so popular it can be found on grocery store shelves as well as in health food stores.
Its flowers are also edible and non toxic to humans and animals. The yellow flowers can be used to dye food, yarn and fabric, like cotton and wool.
As winter approaches, instead of cleaning out the garden beds, let the brown stems of autumn flowers be. Plant stalks provide refuge for pollinators and other beneficial wildlife in your yard or community garden.
Fremont Library to Host Michigan Notable Author John Wemlinger
Live @ the Library, a series of events including author visits and informational presentations at Fremont Area District Library is thrilled to host Michigan Notable Author John Wemlinger as he presents his newest book, The Cut.
In The Cut, named a 2022 Michigan Notable Book, Alvin Price and Lydia Cockrum literally bump into one another in the summer of 1870 and fall in love. Coming from vastly different backgrounds, their relationship encounters struggle amid the feuding farmers and powerful lumber industry in Manistee, Michigan. Additionally, a terrible storm on October 8, 1871 will sweep across the upper Midwest, setting off fires in Chicago and dozens of other cities, including Manistee. Will their love endure?
John Wemlinger will also answer questions and have books available to purchase and sign. This free program will begin in the library’s Community Room on Thursday, November 17th at 7:00 p.m.
Learn more about library events by visiting www.fremontlibrary.net or call 231-924-3480.