Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Brutus Goes to a Puppet Show

Brutus made a new friend this week--the Little Red Hen. He was even a good dog and didn't chase or try to eat her! Little Red Hen was the star of a puppet show held in the Children's Department which was enjoyed by both Brutus and a number of kids. There were even other animals present (which made Brutus even happier). Brutus is now looking forward to story hours beginning again on January 5. This is always a good way to meet, and get lots of hugs, from the kids.

Friday, December 11, 2009

First Scholarship Recipient

Brutus was thrilled to congratulate Chicaro Napier-Hoffman on being the first recipient of an award from the Ken and Suzanne Uptigrove Scholarship Fund. Chicaro was selected because she is both a current SDL employee and enrolled in Wayne State University's library science program. This was a nice early Christmas present for Chicaro who hopes to be an archivist some day. She presently works in the Adult Department of the Owosso Branch as a part-time professional. In addition to helping people who use the library, she also assists with interlibrary loan (MeLCat) and works on special projects to benefit both the library and community.

Brutus was interested in becoming a librarian until he learned how much work is involved. With only an obedience school education, he would first have to finish high school, earn a bachelor's degree, and then complete a master's degree in library or information science. This was just too much for a little dog to comprehend. He thinks he'll leave this for the humans. In the meantime, he'll just do a little more tail-wagging in celebration of Chicaro's accomplishments.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Brutus Wears a New Hat

Brutus was trying on hats Brenda made up for the kids Thanksgiving craft program on Wednesday, Nov. 25 at the Durand branch. Kids are invited to stop by anytime between 3 and 6 to make a fun hat. Brutus's favorite hat was the turkey, but Brenda told him she was going to wear it for the craft program so he had to share.

Brutus Meets Lucy the Therapy Dog

Brutus was at bedtime story hour Friday night at Durand, and was surprised when Lucy, a therapy dog, showed up. Lucy brought her owner, Marie Holloway, to listen to storyteller Grandma Parks with all of the kids. Lucy was well behaved during story hour but very disappointed when Brutus told her only people cookies are served afterwards. Lucy is planning to come back to the library this winter to listen to children practice reading aloud. Brutus plans to be there too.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Sorting a MeL Delivery

The Owosso Branch received an unusually large MeL (interlibrary loan) delivery this afternoon. Brutus was soon involved. At first, he wanted to play in the pile, but Barb and Margaret weren't very happy about his King (Dog) of the Mountain game. They quickly gave him a job--sniffing out the incorrectly delivered packages. When he was done, they had an entire bag of items which needed to go to other libraries, and the staff were thankful for his help.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Brutus the Ghost

Brutus is getting ready for the library's Halloween programs by trying on his ghost costume. He's especially excited about the "Night with Ghost Hunter Brad Mikulka" at the Owosso branch on Fri., Oct. 23 @ 7 p.m. , and at the Durand Memorial Branch on Fri., Oct. 30 @ 7 p.m. He's hoping Brad will mistake him for a real ghost.

Brutus will also be at the Durand branch for a trick-or-treat bag craft program for kids on Wed., Oct. 21 from 4-7 p.m., and Halloween bedtime story hour on Fri., Oct. 23 @ 7 p.m. Kids who want to come to the craft program should register ahead by calling 288-3743.

The Owosso branch is having a Murder Mystery Party for teens on Sat., Oct. 24 @ 2 p.m. Actors are needed for the program so Brutus has been practicing his acting skill at playing dead. He'll also be at Owosso's costume party for families with preschoolers on Fri., Oct. 30 from 3-4:30.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Where the Wild Things Are

Brutus romped with the wild things at a puppet show based on Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are yesterday. He joined right in when Max announced "Let the wild rumpus start," and proved that he could also be a wild thing. This was the first of a series of Family Fun Fridays. The next one will be held on October 16 from 2-4 p.m. and will feature a fall craft program.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Find Brutus

Brutus has been sniffing around the library's website ( and is now lost. Have fun finding him during October, click on his picture, and print out a coupon for a free DVD rental. A valid library card is required to borrow the DVD and there is a limit of one free rental per card.

Brutus helps Caleb with his homework

Because school is underway, Brutus is helping Caleb with his homework on the computer. The library has many sources to help kids with their homework, both in the library and online. If the library doesn't have the book a student needs, library staff will be glad to try and get it from another library through MelCat. Students can also find lots of good information such as Kids InfoBits on the databases

Brutus wanted to use the World Book Encyclopedia online to look at all the dog pictures, but Caleb needed to work on math problems. Brutus's favorite problem was: If you have 5 cats and give 5 away, how many cats do you have left?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Library Carnival

Brutus had lots of fun at Saturday's Library Carnival. He was involved with almost everything at some point in the afternoon. The wrecking ball game was his favorite. (If he missed the house with the ball, he could always use his tail). There were lots of prizes to choose from, and some of them looked like lots of fun--the only thing missing was a good bone to chew one. He hoped to win the dog cake, but, alas, it went to one of the kids. He also had to put his nose to the grindstone for part of the afternoon and help Harriet sell tickets. Staff wouldn't let him near the food booth, to his dismay; but he's still not too sure about eating "hot" dogs.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Brutus and the Create a Library Contest Winner

Brutus is looking over the Pony Express Library, the grand prize winner in the Durand Branch's Create a Library contest that was held over the summer. The library was built by Samantha Bukovick and her parents Becky and John. Brutus sniffed all of the detail in Samantha's library which includes over 300 miniature books, but all he could find were horse books, no dog books.

He checked the other library entries in the contest, but couldn't find any dog books there either. He did growl at the library that had a library cat, Dewey. Brutus wanted to bark and chase after the horses in front of Samantha's library, but they were well behaved and refused to run around the library and make noise.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Rally in Lansing

Brutus was a bit in a hurry today. He didn't want to be late for the rally in Lansing being sponsored by the Michigan Library Association. He fears that the state is going to the dogs with the proposed cuts to the Library of Michigan and state aid to public libraries. How can humans be so short-sighted? He wasn't too sure about MeLCat until Barb explained to him that this did not involve cats; it is the statewide interlibrary loan system and catalog which is in jeopardy. Brutus enjoys MeLCat, especially playing in the blue bags and reading dog stories (although he'd like to see the "cat" part changed). Margaret and Steve have calmed him down for today with promises that they will be attending Thursday morning's rally on the Capitol steps at 10 a.m. They hope to see many librarians and library users there in support of Michigan's libraries; everyone is encouraged to write to their state legislators.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Pre-School Winners in the Summer Reading Program

Brutus joined a group of pre-schoolers for a picture yesterday. He loves kids and was thrilled to learn that this group represented the top "readers" (or in their case, probably listeners) in this summer's reading program for their age group. He was so excited with the hugs and pats on the head from the kids, that his tail didn't quit wagging for several hours. He is just as anxious as the children, to see them spend their library dollars at the carnival on September 12th. The children pictured are Charles DeWeese, Charlotte DeWeese, Omaleigh McVay, Sophia Wellman, Everett McVay, and Savannah McVay. Congratulations to all the children who read this summer! You're all winners in Brutus' book.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Brutus Looks for More Books to Read

Brutus is using Bookletters to find more books to read. Margaret is too busy with a desk schedule and helping people in the library this afternoon for him to pick her brain right now, but he has discovered in the Good Reads section of the library's website a past "If You Like . . . Lilian Braun" newsletter. He is not interested in any of the cat mysteries, but thinks that he may try one of Laurien Bernson' s poodle mysteries or Carol Lea Benjamin's books featuring dogs next. He is going to sign up to receive via e-mail some of the newsletters each time they are published.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Hands Around the Library of Michigan

Dog gone it! Brutus can't believe the news that the Library of Michigan may close. He found out that Steve and Margaret had taken the morning off to attend the Hands Around the Library rally in Lansing; he would have gone, too, if dogs had been invited! With less than a year at SDL, he has all ready learned about the great things the Library of Michigan does for many people--lots of books for genealogists, MeL databases, and MeLCat to name just a few. What will he do if there are no more blue bags to climb in and out of or a way to get more dog stories from other libraries? He was glad to hear that over 500 people attended the rally, and Margaret even let him hold on to part of her piece of green ribbon to show his support. He is hoping to help some of the staff write letters to their legislators, after all even dogs know how important libraries are even if they can't vote. He also heard that the librarians will be holding another rally on September 10th, and is hoping that even more people can attend that one.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Brutus Visits Curwood Castle

Brutus had another opportunity to leave the library and visit some of the local sites. Recently he went to Curwood Castle in Owosso to learn more about James Oliver Curwood. He found out that the Castle was used as a writing studio and has been named as a literary landmark by the Friends of Libraries U.S.A. Brutus has seen some of Curwood's books in the library and was excited to visit the place where Curwood worked and see the Shiawassee River. (Staff was grateful to learn that Brutus wasn't interested in swimming in the river). And you should have seen his tail wag when found out that several of these books (Kazan and Baree) were about dogs!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Library Board Picnic

Brutus was all ready to go to the Library Board picnic on Wednesday evening; he was drooling over the good food which was going to be there--especially the desserts (apple pie, cookies, chocolate cake, and more). Then he heard that the main course was to to be hot dogs and he decided to stay in Owosso. He was worried that after he messed up Margaret's desk a week ago, that he might become the "hot" dog. No one could convince him that hot dogs were not made from real dogs. Everyone else had a good time.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Mr. H's Corner

This afternoon was also exciting for Brutus. The family of Steve Hanzolvic made a donation to the library in his memory. Mr. H. was a teacher and the money is being used to purchase resources for parents and teachers which will housed in the Children's Department. There was even a cake, but Brutus wasn't allowed to eat it himself--humans got first chance at it. Brutus never had the chance to meet Mr. H, but he thinks that he must have been a great teacher to be honored this way. Did he ever use books about dogs in his classroom?

Brutus Goes to Storyhour

Brutus had a very busy day yesterday. In the morning he helped Cindy tell stories at Emerson School. The boys and girls enjoyed meeting Brutus, and they spoiled him with lots of love and affection. Brutus liked all the attention he received. There is only one more week of summer reading program, and he hopes to meet even more kids next week.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Brutus misses out on ALA

Brutus was a bad dog today. He missed Steve and Margaret for a few days, and just found out that they had gone to a conference in Chicago without him! He messed up Margaret's desk in revenge and started to chew up her program book. Margaret will be spending part of the afternoon cleaning up the mess. Brutus was also unhappy that he missed meeting Oscar the Robot in Emery-Pratt's booth and that he will have to share his space with the new fish seen in the photo. His only consolation is that neither of them brought home any cats. He is being promised that if he behaves himself until next year, he might be able to visit Washington, DC. He thinks that this may be too much to expect from a dog who likes to have fun.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Brutus attended the Joel Tacey comedy and juggling show in the pavilion behind the Durand Memorial Branch. He was happy to meet another dog, Major, at the show since he usually doesn't get to see other dogs in the library.

Brutus helped Joel set up for the show but they stopped long enough to have their pictures taken with some kids. Joel was being funny and stuck bunny ears behind Brutus. Brutus didn't mind since they weren't cat ears.

The show was so exciting that Brutus volunteered to help Joel, but he didn't know he was going to be juggled. Brutus thought it was fun but he was dizzy for a while. The crowd of 123 humans, 2 dogs, and one rabbit all enjoyed Joel's performance. The next program wil be a make and take craft program on July 22 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Birds of Prey Program

Brutus joined 48 people for a program by the Howell Nature Center on the Birds of Prey this afternoon. He was sad to learn that the falcon, hawk, and owls visiting the Children's Department hunt small rodents and smaller birds, but not nature's greatest nuisance--cats.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Brutus Marches to the Beat of a Different Drummer

Brutus was involved in a visit from Drummunity this afternoon. He joined about 75 kids and their parents for a chance to march to the beat of various items used as drums. (He found it difficult to keep all four feet in time with the beat). Everyone had a great time. Brutus is also looking forward to next week's program being done by the Howell Nature Center on Tuesday, July 7th at 1 p.m. Rumor has it that live birds are involved. Can he run fast enough to catch one?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Brutus and the Bubble Man

Brutus met the Bubble Man this afternoon in Owosso's Children's Department. He thought that the bubbles were very neat (and would have chased some of them if the staff had allowed it), but the heat began to get to him. The Bubble Man needed one of the fans turned off and there were about 60 people at the program. At first he thought that he might take a swim in the vat of bubble solution, but Annie told him that it wasn't just plain water--there was a lot of soap in it! Brutus settled for a nice cold drink from the water fountain instead. Brutus is enjoying the summer reading program so far and hopes to meet even more kids at story hours and Drummunity on July 2nd at 1 p.m.

Brutus makes a visor

This morning Brutus helped make visors with kids at the craft program at the Durand Memorial Branch. He's going to use his visor to keep cool during the dog days of summer. Brutus will also be at the other summer craft programs in Durand on July 22 and August 5 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Summer Reading Program Signup

Brutus has been pestering the staff, like a dog with a bone, to let him sign up for this summer's reading program. Today he had his chance. He's now look for dog stories and can't wait to join some of the kids at the story hours. Story hours will be held at the following locations from June 15th to July 24th at 10 a.m.:
Mondays: Roosevelt School
Tuesdays: Shiawassee District Library--Owosso
Wednesdays: Curwood Castle
Thursdays: Emerson School
Fridays: Bryant School

In the case of rain, Storytime will be held at the library.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Sorting Books for the Booksale

Brutus decided to help Margaret sort books this morning. The only problem was where to start. There are lots of books for tomorrow's sale which will be held on the library's front lawn (502 W. Main, Owosso). There are also some books on cassette, VHS tapes, and DVDs. Brutus hopes to see you there, and let him know if you see any good dog stories you think he might enjoy!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Brutus visits the Bus-eum

Brutus enjoyed the Bus-eum's visit earlier today. This year's display was entitled "Held in the Heartland" and featured information and artifacts related to World War II German POW's who were held in the midwestern U.S. Brutus didn't know much about World War II so he found the treatment of the enemy very interesting. Many of men, some of whom were housed just west of Owosso, worked on area farms or in local factories. Chicaro had also compiled a notebook of reminisces and newspaper articles related to Owosso's camp. Brutus learned alot about both the POWs and Owosso's history in a short period of time. For anyone who missed the exhibit, the accompaning booklet will be made available at the library in a few weeks as well as the notebook.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Brutus Plants flowers for Community Pride Week

Brutus helped Harriet plant the new flower bed around the Owosso Branch's sign. This was the final step in the library's part of Owosso's Community Pride Week. He was disappointed that there were no dogwood trees included, but was excited to hear about blanket flowers, that is until he was told that he couldn't lay in them. He was allowed to do some digging, but was also told he couldn't dig up any plants. (So many rules for such a small dog to remember!) Everyone on the staff thinks that the new bed is a great addition to the library's landscaping and hopes that the community does too. Do you think Brutus can help Joe pull weeds without disturbing the other plants?