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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.

Charles Santore Library branch in South Philadelphia Credit: Mark Henninger / Imagic Digital

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.

BP Quizzo cohost Sakeenah Benjamin asks trivia questions at Sports and Social Credit: Danya Henninger / Billy Penn

RECAP: What else happened?

$ = paywalled

Shoppers stroll South Street on a summer afternoon Credit: Emma Lee / WHYY

Weekly brief on gun violence prevention (with PCGVR)

We publish this report each week in partnership with the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

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.


? 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)