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Cities

Powers: The dog days of summer in Lyons

Community Voice

Dan Powers is director of the Lyons Public Library.
Dan Powers is director of the Lyons Public Library.

If you research the history of the term “the dog days of summer” at your library, you will find that the ancient Greeks and Romans actually were the ones who first began associating the “Dog Star,” Sirius, with the extremely hot summer weather.

The dog days originally were the days when Sirius rose at the same time as sunrise (although this is no longer the case), and the ancient Greeks and Romans believed that the star, Sirius, was the cause of the hot, sultry weather. Dog days were believed to be an evil time when seas boiled, wines turned sour, creatures became languid and dogs grew mad. Even man became lackluster and uninspired. The dog days generally are considered to be in session from the middle of July through the middle of August.

Lethargy in hot weather and leisurely activities during the summer months seem to be the norms even today. This is not the case, however, in the world of public libraries. During the summer months in the public library world, the biggest event, of course, is summer reading. In Lyons, we’ve had an extremely successful program this year.

The planning and implementation of the program alone takes about 30 hours a day (seemingly, anyway). At the Lyons Public Library, in addition to the time constraints of the summer reading program, we continue with other regular programming. We place more books orders during the summer than at other times, and we just started our huge recycling drive (come to the library for information). August also is the time that we at the Lyons Public Library have decided to begin an all library materials weeding program. 

The village of Lyons started a Community Market for the first time ever, which will be every Monday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. through Oct. 28. The Lyons Public Library has a booth at the market. Getting our library’s booth together was more work than you might imagine. Although, I must admit, it was fun and exciting “work.” 

While the rest of the world is trying to remain unhurried and laid-back during the dog days of summer, remember that your local public library is working harder than ever for its patrons.

Your journey starts here!

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