Danell Haspel, columnist
Why do we celebrate Valentine's Day the way we do?" American's can thank Esther A. Howland, of Worcester, Massachusetts. Our most popular activity on Valentine's Day is sending cards, and according to World Book Encyclopedia, Ms. Howland is one of the first U.S. manufacturers of Valentine cards. She got the tradition started for us in 1847, and it's still going strong. Not thinking about cupid yet? A good book or movie is guaranteed to get you in the mood for Valentine's Day, and your library has one for every age.
Did you know the first modern Olympic Games took place in Athens in 1896? The Games have definitely evolved since then. We all know the first place winner earns a gold medal, while second place is awarded silver and third place receives the bronze medal. This was not exactly the case in 1896, when first place winners were awarded a gilt silver medal, a branch of laurel and a diploma. Your library has materials on the Olympic Games, and the athletes that have participated. "Nadia: the Girl Who Couldn't Sit Still," by Karlin Gray.
Did you know the first legislation to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birth was introduced just months after his assassination in 1968? And did you know that the first official holiday was observed on the third Monday in January, 1986?
Hats off to blood donors! January has been known as "National Blood Donor Month" since 1970. According to the American Red Cross, someone needs a transfusion every 2 seconds. Did you know that one person's donation can save up to three lives? When you go to donate, you're going to want to take a good book to read. Highlighted below are two books on the subject of blood and/or donating.
Most of us are going to work in the dark and coming home in the dark. We're heading toward the winter solstice, which lands this year on Dec. 21. The solstice takes place because the northern hemisphere is angled farthest away from the sun on that day. Your library's collection contains numerous titles relating to winter such as those highlighted below. Have a great shortest day of the year! "Winter (Seasons)," by Julie Murray.
Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese on December 7, 1941, propelling Americans into World War II. The conflict turned the world upside down, bringing changes virtually everywhere. Americans mobilized an army and everyday citizens did their part on the home front. The chaos closer to the epicenter of the war were astounding. There were stories to be chronicled in every corner of the world, and some are still being written. Your library's collection of World War II materials is extensive, with two of our newer items listed below.
November is National Diabetes Month. According to the Centers for Disease Control, statistics from 2017 show there are 30.3 million people in the United States with diabetes. Unfortunately, 7.2 million people out of the 30.3 million are undiagnosed. To learn more about symptoms of the disease and how to approach a suitable diet, check out your local library for materials such as those highlighted below. "Healthy Makeovers for Diabetes: Simple Ways to Transform Your Cooking," by Diabetic Living Editors.
Thanksgiving is soon upon us, giving us the opportunity to pause our busy lives and spend time with those that matter most. Just a word to the wise: If those that matter most get annoying, grab a good library book. The holiday down time is perfect for some relaxing reading. Whether you download digital library books from our website, or you had the foresight to stop at the library to choose a print book, enjoy your holiday reading. Seriously though, the staff at the Detroit Lakes Library wishes you all a wonderful Thanksgiving.
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle" was written by Socrates who was born in 470 B.C. The changes that have occurred since his lifetime are mind boggling, but obviously the cry for kindness among humans continues. Meanness is very easy to find in today's society, so take a minute to be kind to someone. The following books are two of our newer resources on the subject. "Esther the Kindness Fairy," by Daisy Meadows.
November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month. According to the Mayo Clinic, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S. Statistics show that lung cancer doesn't discriminate between the genders, and of course those that smoke or have smoked are at greater risk. Most surprising is that lung cancer claims more lives than colon, prostate, ovarian and breast cancers do- combined. Two of our newer library items on the topic are highlighted below. "When Breath Becomes Air," by Paul Kalanithi.