Columbia, MO (August 13, 2009)—The sun is beating down on us, the thermometer is stuck at 90 degrees and there’s not a breath of fresh air. The dog days of summer are here!
Ancient astronomers in Mediterranean countries came up with the phrase "dog days" for the hottest period of the summer.
The astronomers defined the dog days as extending from 20 days before to 20 days after the conjunction of Sirius (the Dog Star) and our sun. This conjunction happened to coincide with the worst days of summer, when folks were especially plagued by disease and discomfort.
The blood supply typically teeters at low levels during the summer months due to travel schedules and the closure of schools and colleges—the source of 20 percent of blood donations in our region. We are approaching the time that students return to school, but we still need the community to donate to help meet the hospital patients’ needs.
We want you to know the air conditioning is on at American Red Cross blood donation centers and blood drives throughout the region. So make plans to escape the heat by scheduling your blood donation appointment today!
Locally, you may join the community and give blood on August 19, 2009 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Roger B. Wilson Government Center located at 801 East Walnut in Columbia.
"By participating in a blood drive, individuals can provide direct and immediate assistance to others," says Presiding Commissioner Ken Pearson. "They are truly giving the 'gift of life'. I encourage all who are able to participate."
If you are at least 17 years of age*, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and are in good general health, you may be eligible to donate blood. All donors need to present positive identification. For more information or to schedule your blood donation appointment, call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE (1-800-448-3543). You can also schedule an appointment online at https://www.givelife.org/index.cfm?group=registration&hlc=BooneCountyGovernmen&pos=19
*In Missouri, you may give blood at 16 years of age with parental consent.