You NEED to Know About These Awesome Grand Rapids Public Library Perks!

GRPL’s Library Freebies Go Beyond Books

child reading GRPL

What Do Disney Movies, Debt Forgiveness and Free Passes to FMG Have in Common?

If I told you there was a place where you could get FREE passes to museums, local theatre, and Frederik Meijer Gardens, I bet you would want to know about it…

What if I said this same place would offer you access to loads of audiobooks, movies, games and more? I guarantee your kids would love to watch a free Disney movie download.

What if I told you this same place was also willing to erase some debt this fall?

I’m not talking about a magical and generous fairy godmother… I’m actually describing Grand Rapids Public Library!

GRPL Offers Something Incredible For Kids of ALL Ages!

Grand Rapids Public Library is an incredible treasure for families in our community. You may think that you’re already using the library to its full potential because you check out movies and books or attend their storytimes, but I’m telling you there are SO many untapped resources to be accessed at GRPL!

Do you have a library card? Do your kids have their own library card? The first step in accessing GRPL freebies is getting your library card and it’s SUPER easy to do!

Seymour Library GRPL

Start With Getting You and Your Kids a GRPL Library Card

1- Go to the Library: You must live within the city limits of Grand Rapids to get a GRPL library card. You can go to any of the 8 GRPL locations to obtain a card.

2- Show a picture ID: Your ID must be valid and include your current home address.

3- Prove your current address: IF your picture ID does not show your current address, bring in a document that does like a pay stub, lease/housing agreement or a delivered piece of mail.

4- Get Your Free Card: The library will give you a free card after you do steps 1-3. There is a $1 fee to replace a lost card.

But did you know…your kids can get their own personal library card at ANY age?

GRPL has no age requirement for a child to get a library card, but the child must be present to receive one with their parent or legal guardian. Learn more about how to get your child their library card HERE.

Do you have library fees you’d love to have forgiven?

It’s time to turn over a new leaf at the library this fall!

It’s easy to rack up library fines. Ever since having little kids, I have found it’s harder than ever to return borrowed books on time! GRPL is generously offering a fine forgiveness opportunity.

If you bring in a NEW person to GRPL to get their first-ever GRPL library card between September 12-25, the library will give you $25 off any/all your library fines. Sounds like one of the easiest ways to erase some debt and start with a fresh, clean slate, doesn’t it?

No library fines? Congrats to you! GRPL will automatically donate $25 to help erase children’s cards with library fines. This is a great way to help children who really need to access the books, computers and other resources at the library, but have frozen cards due to overdue fees.

You better believe I’m going to be bringing my son into GRPL between September 12-25 to get him his first library card! Who will you bring in to get a new card?

GRPL library card

What Perks/Freebies Does the Library Offer Exactly?

Opportunities for Babies – Age 5


GRPL offers TumbleBooks to library card holders, which is an amazing resource for little kids. You can read animated, talking picture books from Tumblebooks with your children or they can watch/listen to books on their own. Kids can also play games, watch videos and read books in multiple languages on Tumblebooks.


“Pre-reading classes are a great way to engage kids in early literacy skills,” says Kristen Corrado at GRPL.

What makes GRPL pre-reading storytime classes so great? These storytimes are fun, free and full of literacy-rich activities. Your children will love singing songs, hearing stories and experiencing hand-on fun geared toward their specific age group! Check out the fall pre-reading class schedule HERE.


Get your kids wiggles out before bed and head to the Seymour Branch on Mondays 6:30-7PM this fall for Pajama Time for kids ages 3-5. Bring your kids in their pajamas with their favorite blanket or stuffed animal. They’ll be extra cozy as they sing songs and hear stories at this special evening storytime.

On Tuesday evenings from 6:30-7PM this fall you can bring your family to Pajama Time for Families, for kids ages birth to 5 years old. This is perfect for family’s with multiple aged children.

GRPL Puppets

Opportunities for Older Kids & Teens


Have you heard of Hoopla yet? Hoopla is an online streaming service that offers downloads of feature films, audiobooks, music albums, documentaries and more! GRPL patrons can use their web browser or device to use hoopla and download up to 7 items a month.

Hoopla now offers a “kids mode” setting that makes it easy to find kid-friendly, appropriate content. Turn the kids mode setting on to show only family-appropriate downloads on your device.


Kids in grades 2-5 can go to the Main Library for awesome, interactive STEAM experiences each month this fall! If your child is interested in things like creating origami, paper airplanes and balloons, then this is the program for them! Hurry–their first one is September 8 at 6:30!

Help with TRAINING, Including DRIVER’S ED

With your GRPL library card, you can access, offering training on all sorts of topics. There are different types of technology training like using photoshop, creating websites, animation, audio engineering, game design and much, more!

Your teens can also benefit from a great driver’s ed resource. They can take practice driver’s ed tests online and more HERE. Your teen will feel more ready than ever to pass their driver’s test!

There are more great library resources your teens can check out at

teens GRPL 1

FREE City Attractions, including Meijer Gardens, Circle Theatre, Riding the Rapid and More!


GRPL partners with The Rapid to provide two-way bus passes to and from the library. Teens can use bus passes to get to and form the library. Parents with children can also check out bus passes; it’s a great way to get your kids to pre-reading classes and pajama time! Just ask at the library desk about getting a two-ride swipe card for a FREE trip on a Rapid bus.


GRPL has partnered with fabulous area attractions to provide patrons with the opportunity to check out a membership to area gardens, zoos, museums and more!

Simply go to the front desk of your local library and see what passes are currently available. I happened upon the Check it Out! program last year and it’s amazed me how few families know about and utilize this AMAZING resource! Through the Check It Out! program I’ve gotten free admission to Frederik Meijer Gardens, Gerald R. Ford Museum and a theater performance.

GRPL continues to add more and more partners to this program, including Circle Theatre this year, which GRPL is very excited about.

After reading about the awesome things GRPL offers, what are you most excited to access this fall? We’d love to hear from you!

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