February 29th, 2016

Leap Year

Leaping girlLeap Year is the 29th day of February, an occurrence which happens every four years when the calendar year has 366 days, instead of just 365. Why do we end up with an extra day? Because it takes the Earth 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 46 seconds to orbit the sun and the regular calendar just has 365 days. Every four years, another day added to synchronize the solar year with the calendar year. If we didn’t do that, eventually the months would become out of sync with the seasons.

This isn’t a new phenomenon; this has been happening for thousands of years! The Egyptians were some of the first to see the need for a calendar based on the sun, but it was under Julius Caesar that it was implemented. Prior to that, the Roman calendar had used a lunar model which sometimes had to add an extra month so they maintained consistency. In 46 BC, the Roman calendar was changed so that it had 12 months and 365 days.

By 1582, the calendar dates were out of sync with the seasons. Roman Pope Gregory XIII ordered that 1583 be shortened by 10 days to “re-sync” the calendar and he established the system of adding leap-year days every four years to the calendar to keep it from falling behind the seasons again. The “Gregorian Calendar” was named for the pope and is the world standard today.

Fun fact: In Ireland, there is a legend that St. Brigid, a fifth century nun, asked St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, for permission for women to propose marriage, instead of waiting for their shy suitors to pop the question! St. Patrick granted her request, but with the stipulation that it could only happen on one day, every four years, Leap Day! Today, there are some who take this legend as truth and think that the woman proposing on Leap Day leads to good luck!

If you’re intrigued by this legend, check out the charming DVD “Leap Year” staring Amy Adams and Matthew Goode.

While the odds of having a Leap Year Day birthday are approximately 1 in 1,500, there are about 4 million people worldwide who have February 29 birthdays. The town of Anthony, Texas has been hosting a “Leap Year Birthday Festival” since 1988!

Do you know anyone with a birthday on February 29?


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November 30th, 2015

Cecil County Public Library Bookmobile

bookmobileSo many Cecil County citizens tell us that they remember the impact the bookmobile had on them when they were children.  Today, lack of transportation and isolation is still a challenge for many Cecil County children and families and our bookmobile is as important as ever to continue opening the world of reading, books, and imagination to Cecil’s children.

We recognize the needs of our community and target our bookmobile outreach and services to meet the needs of children and families less likely to come to a library branch. We have introduced programs like “My Special Book” for our youngest students to come aboard the bookmobile and choose a high-quality hard-covered book to keep.

Our bookmobile is a critical tool in our outreach to these communities but growing mechanical issues have created disruptions in service. We need a new bookmobile to ensure continued, high-quality service. Together with the Friends of the Cecil County Public Library, we plan to raise significant funds toward the purchase of the new vehicle.

Strong community support of this indispensable program is vitally important to securing additional funding from the county for the purchase of a new bookmobile.

Share your bookmobile memories with us!  (410) 996-1055 x129  or fwalker@ccplnet.org  


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