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Philly libraries expand hours, still have hundreds of vacancies
The Free Library system has struggled to keep regular schedules due to staff shortages, but some branches have been gradually increasing hours.
- Nearly 75% of library branches have 5 full days of service, per a Billy Penn analysis, but staffing shortfalls are still causing unscheduled closures. Right now, there are over 330 full-time positions open.
The library expects it could take a year to onboard everyone — but those elusive Saturday hours could come online this winter, Asha Prihar reports.
August trivia quiz: How much do you know about Philly?
Last month we took our trivia contest to Sports & Social inside the Live Hotel & Casino in South Philly, where we won big with a full house of competitors.
- After three rounds of questions about the city’s past, present, and future, the aptly named “Team Hoagiefest” walked away with the most right answers, winning a $50 gift card, and a beach chair to boot.
Think you can beat their high score of 15/24? Try your hand at the same Philly trivia quiz — and no, Google does not count as a teammate.
RECAP: What else happened?
$ = paywalled
- There aren’t many registered Republicans in Philadelphia — Democrats outnumber them 7 to 1 — but there are a handful of Black Republican ward leaders, trying to recruit voters also frustrated with the status quo. [Inquirer$]
- Derek Green followed Maria Quiñones Sánchez yesterday and resigned his at-large City Council seat while declaring a bid for mayor. District 9 Councilmember Cherelle Parker is expected to join them today — stay tuned for details. [Billy Penn/WHYY]
- The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education is halting its proposed sale of 24 acres in Upper Roxborough after major opposition. [Grid]
- Creative incubator REC Philly is expanding to Miami, thanks to an investment from Sean “Diddy” Combs. [Technically]
- A 300-pound skater-famous bench made its way to Philly last month. How long will it stick around? Hard to say, but history suggests it’ll get swiped again. [PhillyVoice]
- How did Bad Bunny pregame Made in America? By casually dropping $50K at local strip club Sin City the night before his performance. [Inquirer$]
Weekly brief on gun violence prevention (with PCGVR)
We publish this report each week in partnership with the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting.
- U.S. Rep. Madeleine Dean of Montco is at the forefront of an effort to push banks to adopt new category codes for gun sales, so they’re easier to track. Visa and Mastercard are reportedly resisting the change. [CBS News/NYT$]
- Residents say Mayor Kenney’s Rebuild initiative to revamp rec centers and playgrounds — which stalled in early years because of litigation over the beverage tax — is “long overdue” as a gun violence solution. [WHYY]
- Philly officials have restarted their gun violence “listening tour,” but residents who attended spring sessions are disappointed with the lack of follow-up or action. [WHYY x 2]
- “Heart of the Story” is a series of workshops and conversations for Black men and boys across Philadelphia. Participants receive a $50 or $100 stipend; RSVP required. [@LoveNowMedia/Google Forms]
- PCGVR has opened applications for community journalists and professional partners for the next Credible Messenger Reporting Project cohort. [PCGVR x 3]
By the numbers in Philadelphia
- 47: Shooting victims recorded last week so far, vs. 56 the week prior. [City Controller via @PCGVR]
- 1,648: Shooting victims this year, up 4% from last year [PCGVR]
- 373: Year-to-date homicides, 3% ahead of last year’s pace and up 77% vs. five years ago [Philly Police]
Mayor Kenney posted some pics of him and his team in Quebec this week at the Congress of the Organization of World Heritage Cities, and he’s actually smiling in at least one.
ON THE CALENDAR
? The Print Center in Rittenhouse hosts a benefit book sale and pop-up art exhibit featuring iconic Electric Factory posters by artist Spencer Zahn. A preview is ticketed ($35) in advance of a free two-day show. (5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8)
? The founder of Harriet’s Bookshop helps launch a one-week pop-up called Marian’s Bookshop at the UC Science Center, with a portion of proceeds benefitting the Marian Anderson Museum. (5:30 to 6:15 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8)
? The “Misconduct Mile” ~ race ~ stops at each of Misconduct Tavern’s three locations, where runners get a boost from a complimentary beer. Entry is $30, and proceeds benefit CHOP. (11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 10)