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Checkers Morton Jazz, Brad Lancaster Magic, Book Sale and More at HPL


April is full of activities for kids, teens and adults, plus live music, live magic, games, classes, clubs — and a book sale you won't want to miss!

Celebrate Jazz month April 9 at 6:00 p.m. with the renowned Checkers Morton group. What you will hear is a band of friends who have played together under this moniker for 40 years. You will hear music from the heart and soul — inspired by the flow of energy that originates at our Source.

Checkers Morton’s “Abramelin.” Cell phone video by Niki Myers Hansen.

Original compositions by all of the members of the band, ranging from Dan's light hearted “Padge” to Gus' deeply inspiring “Little Raga.” You will hear this amazing music performed on wood, reeds, brass, ivory and primal drums. Checkers Morton is Dave Collee on bass, Gus VanStee on keys, Jim Beegle on trumpet, flueglehorn, congas and flute, Dan Giacobassi on saxes, flute and shakuhachi and Tim Froncek on the drums.

Checkers Morton came together in the early autumn of 1972 on the shores of Lake Michigan in Grand Haven. The power of the lake and the power of Free Music forged a bond that is still strong today. For more information see their Facebook page. You may be a different person when you leave this special performance.

Checkers Morton’s “Lake Effect,” recorded by Kurt Ehinger at West Michigan Jazz Society”s “Jazz at the Zoo” 2015.

We have activities for kids, teens and adults at HPL every month!

April 2 through 6, Spring Break Activities. Take a well-deserved break from school and pop in to the library for a fun, new activity every day. We’ll keep busy with building, playing, and crafting. Supplies will be available the whole day.

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Girls coding club meets Mondays at HPL.

Mondays, April 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Girls Who Code. Did you know Hackley Public Library has a coding club just for girls? We are an official host site for the international Girls Who Code organization. The club is open to students grade six and up. In the club, girls will master the basics of coding like loops, variables, functions, and conditionals to name a few. We will meet every Monday evening through the end of May.

Wednesdays, April 4, 11, 18 and 25, 1:00 to 2:00 p.m., Tips and Tricks for Phones and Tablets. Having trouble with your tablet? Flustered by your phone? Bring it to HPL on Wednesdays at 1:00 to get tech help. Walk-ins welcome.

Thursdays, April 5, 12, 19 and 26 at 10:30 a.m., Preschool Storytime. Join us for stories, songs, movement activities, and a craft just for little ones.

Saturday, April 7, 10:30 a.m. to noon, Computer Class: Publisher. Learn how to make flyers, newsletters and more using this popular software. De’ondra Pentecost will show you how.

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Saturday, April 7, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., Minecraft. What kind of parties do Minecraft players have? Block parties! Don’t miss out on all the fun! Be one of the 20 players by registering online here or calling (231) 722-8014.

Monday, April 9, 6:00 p.m., Checkers Morton. Celebrate Jazz month in April with the renowned Checkers Morton group.

Saturday, April 14, 2:00 to 3:00 p.m., Monthly Makers — K’nex Roller Coasters. Grab a few friends or come as a family and tackle our roller coaster building challenge. Each group will have the chance to build a two-foot tall roller coaster! This activity works best for age eight and up. Anyone younger will need adult assistance.

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Friday and Saturday, April 20 and 21, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Used Book Sale. Low, low prices and a huge selection of books and all kinds of media. In the library’s lower level meeting rooms.

Saturday, April 21, All Day Board Games. Assemble your battleships, shuffle your Uno cards, and lay out your Checkers set. We’ll have all sorts of fun board games available for you to enjoy. Play an old classic or discover a new favorite!

Sunday, April 22, noon to 3:00 p.m., Fabulous $3 a Bag Used Book Sale. All you can stuff in a bag for just $3.00. We provide the bags.

Saturday, April 28, 10:30 a.m. to noon. Computer Class: Powerpoint. Your presentations can be as good as a fifth graders! Find out how to do it using this easy and popular software. Call the library (231) 722-8000 to save yourself a place at this hands-on class.

Saturday, April 28, 2:00 to 3:00 p.m., Brad the Magician! Magician Brad Lancaster is ready to dazzle and amaze! This family-friendly entertainer will have you baffled and bamboozled as he encourages the love of reading through magic.

Brad Lancaster is an experienced Multi-Award winning Grand Rapids Michigan magician and puppeteer with a career that spans over 30 years. His television credits include numerous local and national appearances including the Statler Brothers Show, Arsenio Hall Show, Bozo Show, AM Chicago, WGN TV News, WOOD TV News, Fox TV News, and many more.

Brad has appeared as the opening act for such stars as Gary Shandling, The Righteous Brothers, Patti Labelle, Sinbad and Sheena Easton.

Above, Magician Brad Lancaster on Fox 2 News during the Michigan State Fair, 2014.

Brad has many theatrical credits including training at the Goodman Theater, Black Ensemble Theater, Second City Improv, as well as leading roles in Spellbound, A Raisin in the Sun, Kintu and the Law of Love, A Day of Absence as well as director and lead Puppeteer in a Puppet Production of Peter and the Wolf with the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra.

Look forward to clean humor, quick wit and surprise in this illusion and entertainment show.

Founded in 1890, the Hackley Public Library is located at 316 W. Webster Ave, in downtown Muskegon. The library is open noon to 8:00 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, and 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Hackley Public Library will be closed on December 23, 24 and 25 plus December 31, 31 and January 1. We’ll be open usual hours December 26, 27, 28, and 29, and starting again on January 2. The Hackley Public Library is dedicated to promoting knowledge, understanding, and wisdom, combating ignorance, intolerance, and indifference, promoting the free exchange of ideas, and conserving our national and local cultural heritage. The mission of the Hackley Public Library is to inform, inspire, and delight our diverse community by providing information, knowledge, literature, new technologies, and traditional and innovative programs. Visit them online at and on Facebook at HackleyPL.

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Jazz: Midnight, with art inspired by jazz album cover design, drops readers into the late night music clubs of 1957. From Gary Scott Beatty. Click here for Jazz: Midnight.

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Muskegon is locally owned and produced. Gary Scott Beatty, editor and publisher. Contents and design © Copyright Gary Scott Beatty, 1509 Princeton Rd., Muskegon, Michigan 49441.

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