2016 Annual Report

Dear Friends,

Reflecting on all that was accomplished during 2016, we are proud and honored to work with such a talented and dedicated staff serving the needs of  a supportive and engaged community.  The role of the public library is ever-evolving, and we embrace the challenge of remaining essential to you by providing vital and valued resources, services, and programs.

2016 was a memorable year with opportunities to honor the past, celebrate the present, and embrace the future. We marked the ten-year anniversary in our “new” building and built on the success of legacy programs liked Authors in Chelsea and the Midwest Literary Walk. We highlighted community history through exhibits and digital resources. We worked to improve your library experiences through facility and website upgrades and redesign.

We secured resources to better keep our community connected. Responding to and anticipating the needs of the community we serve, we introduced new collections and sustainable initiatives. To ensure future success, we created our community-driven 2017–2019 Strategic Plan, which will inform our programs, services, and resources for the next three years.   

Thank you for helping create a memorable year at your library! We are proud of what we accomplished with you and are excited about the future.

Our commitment to you is to deliver on our mission to engage, inspire, and equip through evolving services and resources. We hope to see you at the Library or out in the community soon!

Lori Coryell
Library Director

Jerry Wilczynski
2016 Library Board President
Lyndon Township

Board of Trustees

Anne Merkel
City of Chelsea

Charlie Taylor
Dexter Township

Tryntje Helfferich
At Large

Susan Lackey
At Large

Jan Carr
Sylvan Township

Elizabeth Sensoli
Lima Township


WWI Centennial logo

For more information about this project, click here.

“I enjoyed putting that (article about the WWI Centennial Project) on the front (cover) — such a great thing you all are doing. As a daughter of a WWII Veteran (passed) I know he would have really appreciated this recognition.”

– Wendy Wood, Sun Times News Managing Editor

“The library is just outstanding in every way. I can hardly believe the very many events they provide and how well they do them all — from big things to little things…. Very creative and ambitious staff.”

– CDL Patron

A portion of Ralph Guenther’s collection of 100,000+ local photographs are now available online. New photos are added continuously.

WWI Project: Through the Michigan Humanities Council and Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau CTAP grants, CDL celebrated our shared history and honored all those who served and supported our troops in World War I with a digital project and banners displayed throughout Chelsea.

Michigan in the Civil War Exhibit created by the Detroit Historical Society

2016 by the Numbers

Midwest Literary Walk

Thanks to the Midwest Literary Walk, Chelsea was named one of the “30 Great Small Towns for Book Lovers” by AboutGreatBooks.com. This event showcases nationally acclaimed authors, and has drawn more than 2,600 attendees to downtown Chelsea businesses since its inception in 2007.

Image of Mark Sweetman

Comedy Showcase continues to entertain hundreds annually during June’s Sound & Sights since 2009.

Authors in Chelsea has enriched the schooling of 5,462 students since its inception in 2009.

Our Early Literacy Programs

Our Early Literacy Programs – Storytime, Toddlertime, and  Babytime  continue to expand in response to the demand from young families.

Meeting the technology needs of our community has become possible through our Learning Lab and the Computer 1:1 program.

Sonic Sundays offers musical relief from the dreary days of winter.

Participation  in Summer Reading programs has sky-rocketed, totaling 11,595 registrants to date.


Mobile Beacon Wi-FLY Grant

Awarded in November 2016, this grant provided the library with 25 Mobile Beacon Hotspots (free unlimited data on Sprint networks,) and 25 laptops. Working with community partners the library will be able to lend out the hotspots to students, low income families, and seniors. The grant also allows the library to expand their offering of classes with the laptops that help to grow and enhance the library’s mobile training lab.

PR XChange Best in Show

Awarded ALA’s PR XChange Best in Show for 10th Anniversary Coloring Book

Remodeled Media Center

Acoustical panel installations, providing better sound for McKune Room programming; Media Center remodel resulting in shelf space for additional materials; better access to DVDs, CDs, and video games; and providing space flexibility and increased natural light.

Website Redesign

Major redesign of CDL website providing better user experience and navigation of website content.

You Said…

“The library is just outstanding in every way. I can hardly believe the very many events they provide and how well they do them all — from big things to little things…. Very creative and ambitious staff.”

– CDL Patron

“We love the flexible hours, the community programs and exhibits. What a fabulous library! One of the reasons we chose to move to Chelsea was the wonderful library. (I am a ‘readaholic’ so a good library is essential and Chelsea’s is FABULOUS, including its staff!)”

– Glenna Jo Christen, CDL Patron

“I have been here on business all week and have been using your library to catch up on work. What a great, friendly, clean, and useful library you have.”

– Guest

“I think that it’s great that you started checking out hotspots. It’s really helpful to some of us who live in the country or just don’t have any internet access. Thanks.”

– CDL Patron

“I like how you let people who have Dexter library cards check out books. The Parents’ Night Out seems to be such a relief for my mom! I think you should do it more often! Thank you for listening!”

– Violet, Youth Patron

“I have really enjoyed the exhibits you have displayed from time to time. They are always fun to view and to read. Thank you – keep bringing them here.”

– Phil Rowland, CDL Patron


Under the leadership of new director, Lori Coryell, CDL strategically plans for the next three years.

With the input provided by the community through surveys, focus groups, and individual interviews with community stakeholders, the CDL staff and board created a three-year plan designed to live up to and exceed your expectations for quality, meaningful library services.

Reducing costs and our impact on the environment is important to CDL! This project will result in 75% improved energy efficiencies, reduced HVAC needs, elimination of UV rays and so much more!


We listened! In the development of our 2017-19 Strategic Plan, we surveyed the community and results showed:

“My daughter loves the Kid’s Spot and the opportunity to choose from hundreds of great books and movies. The new remodel looks like it’s going to be great, making more space for after school studying.”

– Carla Hoopingarner, Facebook Review

New Collections and Services

A collection of unusual items to help our patrons Create, Design, and Learn in a hands-on way.

Hotspot Collection

Internet Access

CDL now provides internet access throughout the entire service district through hotspots at Lyndon, Lima, and Sylvan Township halls; library high-speed internet connection; and the hotspot collection.


Our Friends are instrumental in building a strong library community.

Programs & Collections supported:

  • Purple Rose Theatre Reading
  • Sonic Sundays
  • WiFi Hotspots
  • Authors in Chelsea
  • A2SO Kinderconcerts
  • Summer Reading Program
  • Star Wars Day
  • Midwest Literary Walk
  • Comedy Showcase
  • Halloween Storytime
  • Launch pads
  • 10th Anniversary Tree Dedication


Grantors are integral to CDL’s ability to provide first-class programs, exhibits, and resources.

WWI Centennial Project

  • Michigan Humanities Council/National Endowment for Humanities
  • Community Tourism Action Plan Program/Washtenaw County
    Convention & Visitors Bureau

Authors in Chelsea

  • Chelsea Education Foundation

Wi-Fi Hotspot and Mobile Lab

  • Mobile Beacon Wi-Fly Digital Inclusion Grant


Annual Giving

  • Chelsea Milling Company – Jiffy Mix


  • Sally & Fred Dickinson
  • Friends of CDL
  • Arlene Howe
  • Jacqueline Hoyt
  • Bill W. Ten Eyck
  • Megan Torrance


  • Angelo Angelocci
  • Carl Bergren
  • Jan & Marshall Carr
  • Chelsea Area Garden Club
  • Chelsea ATA
  • Chelsea Bakery
  • CHS Class of 1950
  • CHS Class of 1951
  • Chelsea Lanes
  • Chelsea Lions Club
  • Chelsea Treehouse
  • Chelsea School District
  • Collected Treasures Farm
  • Cottage Inn
  • Crooked Lake Association
  • Michael & Ann Feeney
  • Timothy & Judy Flint
  • Bill & Barbara Frame & Family
  • Friends of CDL
  • Robert & Marjorie German
  • Catherine & Ray Gillem
  • John & Lynette Hand
  • Nancy & William Harris
  • Dr. & Mrs. Worth Henderson

General (cont.)

  • Daphne Hodder
  • George Hunt
  • Jet’s Pizza
  • Catherine A. Kamil & David A. Foster
  • Dan & Terri Lancaster
  • Yvonne Lockwood
  • Dominic Long
  • Warren McArthur
  • David B. Miller
  • Shauna & Don Mote
  • Jo Ann & Gary Munce
  • Nancy Neff
  • Carol & Jim Pauly
  • Print Tech, Inc.
  • Mary & Jim Randolph
  • Robert H. Schroer
  • Gerald & Lynn Sims
  • Laura Staebler
  • Carol Strahler
  • Ronald & Mary Ann Warren
  • Wendy Washington & Jenny Connelly
  • Wendy’s
  • Zap Zone


  • Friends of CDL
  • Rick Taylor, Reinhart Realty
  • Kiwanis Club of Chelsea
  • Mason Olive Lodge #156
  • 5 Healthy Towns Foundation

Summer Reading Program received a generous sponsorship from Rick Taylor, Reinhart Realtors

Community Partners

  • Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase
  • Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra
  • Astral Road Media
  • Ballet Chelsea
  • Chelsea Adult Learners Institute
  • Chelsea Alehouse
  • Chelsea Chamber of Commerce
  • Chelsea Depot Association
  • Chelsea Family Dentistry
  • Chelsea Farmers Market
  • Chelsea First United Methodist Church
  • Chelsea School District
  • Chelsea Senior Center
  • ChelseaMich.com
  • City of Chelsea
  • Detroit Historical Society
  • Detroit Public TV
  • Dexter District Library
  • Faith in Action
  • 4-H Clubs of Washtenaw County
  • Gerald E. Eddy Discovery Center
  • Great lakes Renewable Energy Association
  • Herbert J. McKune American Legion Post 31
  • Literati Book Store
  • McKinley Properties
  • Michigan Friends Center
  • Monitor and Merrimack Base Ball Clubs
  • Polly’s Country Market
  • Purple Rose Theatre Company
  • River Gallery
  • Savor Life Nutrition
  • Sounds & Sights/Chelsea Festivals
  • SRSLY Chelsea
  • Thompson’s Pizza
  • Transition Town Chelsea
  • Washtenaw Literacy Council
  • WDET