Beyond the Bus blog logo

Connecting with Library Services during COVID-19

Monday, March 23, 2020

Categories: Blog, Community

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has required us to make sweeping changes to our daily lives. Toilet paper is the hottest item on the market. Social distancing is the norm.

For the health and safety of our employees, riders and the general public, CATA even temporarily suspended its fixed-route services. We’re now offering free curb-to-curb rides for critically essential work or medical trips.

Other public services are adapting as well, such as Capital Area District Libraries.

Since CADL is closed through April 13, we're counting down three ways you can still connect with their services.

1. Tune in to a storytime show.

CADLtales is a kid-friendly educational series with stories, songs and learning activities. Shows are filmed at the downtown Lansing branch, so while you may not be able to visit the  branch in person, you can play these storytime shows whenever you’d like.

You can find a full playlist of episodes on CADL’s YouTube channel. Click here to learn more.

2. Go digital with download and streaming services.

Library cardholders can download or stream books, music, movies and more. No need for a Netflix subscription here. A bonus of going digital? You don’t have to go to the library to return borrowed items, so there are no overdue fees.

Explore CADL’s impressive digital library here. It even includes comic books!

3. Create your own historical adventure.

Explore our community’s history through thousands of images and documents with Local History Online. Conduct your own research, go on a virtual historical scavenger hunt or flip through photos that pre-date social media. No library card required.

Click here to start exploring.

Check out this cool piece of Lansing history! You can find more historical Lansing photos with CADL Local History bit.ly/3bEN5h6

Posted by Capital Area District Libraries on Friday, February 14, 2020

Want another look at Stevie Wonder's time in Lansing? Check out this video testimonial from Below the Stacks.

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Surprising Things You Can Check Out From Capital Area District Libraries

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Categories: Blog, Community, Employees

 
CATA CEO Brad Funkhouser and CADL Executive Director Scott Duimstra pose in front of bus
 
CATA champions community partnerships, and one of our treasured partnerships is with the Capital Area District Libraries. This library system in Ingham County has a special Library of Things, where adult cardholders can check out unique hands-on items.

Some of the unique materials you can check out from the Library of Things include:

1. A ghost hunting kit

Are there any spirits haunting Lansing? Scour the community for ghouls and ghosties with this five-piece kit:

  • Electromagnetic field meter
  • Spirit box
  • Digital voice recorder
  • UV flashlight
  • UV sunglasses

Click here for more details. Then hop on a Route 14 bus to the Turner-Dodge House to seek the ghost of Marion Turner or research these other local ghost stories. 

2. A sewing machine

Because making your own clothes and fabrics is sew cool (pun intended). Hone your skills with the Library of Thing’s Janome 525 sewing machine, which comes with too many accessories to list. 

3. Potter Park Zoo passes

CADL’s Library of Things also offers family passes to the Potter Park Zoo. One family pass provides free zoo admission for your household. The pass also covers parking!

Click here to learn more.

4. Banjos and ukeleles

It don’t mean a thang if it ain’t got that twang. These stringed instruments are just two of the many available to adult CADL cardholders. Browse the full list of instruments here. You may just find yourself taking home a guitar, keyboard, or otamatone for two weeks. 

5. A GoPro action kit

Use touch-screen and voice control features to capture HD footage on the GoPro HERO7 White camera. The camera is even waterproof up to 33 feet.

Click here to check out more camera features and all the accessories that come with the device.

6. Rokus pre-loaded with movies

What’s your favorite movie genre? The Library of Things likely has a Roku for it. A Roku plugs into your TV and allows you to stream CADL’s digital library of movies and shows.

Enjoy sci-fi, horror, comedy, drama, action films and more. Browse the full catalog of CADL Rokus here.

7. CATA 31-day fixed-route and 10-day rural service bus passes

We didn’t want to miss our chance to be part of the Library of Things! That’s why we teamed up with CADL to offer 31-day fixed-route and 10-ride rural service bus passes.

“I’m thrilled about our partnership with Capital Area District Libraries,” said our CEO Brad Funkhouser, “specifically about the opportunity to help raise awareness about CATA and CADL’s services.” 

“We both bring tremendous, immeasurable value to our communities,” Brad said. “This partnership is a unique way for us to demonstrate the true spirit of public service in action."

The passes have had an immediate impact on the local community.

In the short time they've been offered, the impact of having bus passes available in our Library of Things has been...

Posted by Capital Area District Libraries on Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Click here to browse the entire Library of Things collection. CADL is changing lives, fostering creativity and encouraging skill-building with this initiative. We're honored to play a role as a community partner.

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

New CATA Bus Shelters Installed and Beautified through Community Partnerships

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Categories: Blog, Community

 

There are some things that just go together – like peanut butter and jelly, macaroni and cheese or Jack and Diane.

But it’s not often people put together bus shelters and culture. 

A recent CATA initiative used this combination to steer community ownership, champion diversity and foster neighborhood pride. Six new bus shelters were installed at high-traffic stops to address community needs. We’re profiling two of these shelters that showcase the culture and diversity of area neighborhoods.

Both of these shelters were made possible through community partnerships and funding. CATA contributed funding toward each project, while the Sycamore Park Neighborhood Association and South Side Community Coalition each received a $3,000 Neighborhood Grant from the City of Lansing.Photo of blue bus shelter located on Pennsylvania Ave

Partnering with the Sycamore Park Neighborhood Association

The SPNA approached CATA to drive safety and inclusion in the area. Their local bus stop was moved just north of Baker Street to improve accessibility and safety. We provided the community options for a new shelter, and they voted on artwork submissions. Shelter designs and artwork were voted on by the public, who chose the shelter that currently stands.

Shelter artwork was provided by local artist Nate Gonzalez, and a solar light was installed at the location in January. The shelter highlights the adventurous, creative and resourceful dimensions of Sycamore Park. 
Working Together with the Southside Community Coalition
The SSCC worked with CATA to give the community’s existing bus shelter a makeover. This shelter on Holmes and Pleasant Grove Road was retrofit with electricity and LED lighting. Its glass paneling was switched from tinted to clear, in order to promote transparency and safety.CATA CEO Brad Funkhouser, Mayor Andy Schor, and others at the vibrant bus shelterThe most defining feature is the bus shelter’s pseudo-stained glass mural, with depictions of faces in the community. Another panel depicts the newly added Beacon Soccer Field, the community coalition and kids playing in the nearby park.

The vibrant color palette reminds us how the area radiates diversity, inclusion and play. 

The Community Ownership Movement
These projects were the spark of a community ownership movement. By partnering with local neighborhoods, CATA was better able to address community needs, concerns and vision. One new shelter was installed and an old shelter was beautified to become points of pride in their neighborhoods. Local communities were involved to make this movement an inclusive one.
 
Because each shelter is unique to its respective neighborhood, local desires to use and maintain them are strong.
 
"These shelters end up being the best cared for shelters," said CATA CEO Brad Funkhouser in a recent interview. "They become a central point of identity, a sense of place for each of the neighborhoods.”
Additional Bus Shelter Projects

CATA is striving to convert more bus shelters into beacons of local culture and pride. Four additional shelters were installed in the area, including new shelters on Michigan State University’s campus and one on Michigan Avenue near the Capitol building.

Three of these four shelters have enhanced amenities, including: real-time bus tracking displays, lighting, USB ports and Wi-Fi. The shelter on Michigan Avenue is even 100% solar-powered.

Who knew bus shelters could bring more culture to a community? We’d call this a winning combination.

Both of the new community inspired bus shelters are a great example of what can happen when the City of Lansing,...

Posted by Andy Schor on Friday, December 13, 2019

To explore more ways CATA drives art and culture, check out this video testimonial from Below the Stacks.

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
123

Theme picker

Subscribe to blog updates

Submit your Story

We need your help! Submit your story about a great ride, a driver that went above and beyond or just about how CATA helps you get around and you could be featured in a future blog post.

If you have a customer experience complaint, please contact us using this form or call 517-394-1000.