Thursday, April 04, 2002

Winter won't wither

By Tom O'Neill
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Just take every coat you have, from the windbreaker to the parka, and put them by your front door. Then wing it, accordingly.

        Today's high should be in the upper 40s, with a low in the upper 20s, but stronger than average winds will make it seem colder.

        Two days ago, the high was 74. T-shirts ruled the day.

        Such is spring in Cincinnati.

        “It better be warmer by Friday,” Cheri Jordan, 8, of Oakleysaid Wednesday. “We're going to Kings Island.”

        Opening day for Paramount's Kings Island is Friday.

        Cheri laughed heartily with her cousin, Heather Wright, 11, as they sat on the swings at Oakley Playground. In thick coats. On Tuesday, they did the same thing. In shirts.

        “Hold off, maybe another week, before putting away the heavy winter coats,” said AccuWeather meteorologist Jason Nicholls. “It's not very unusual. April is basically the transition month, so it's prime for severe weather. Winter is just trying to hold on.”

        The culprit is a clash of air masses across the nation's middle.

        The dramatic swings in temperature wreak havoc on businesses such as Natorp's Garden Store, which brought some less-hardyplants and flowers inside.

        “We can't take a chance that they get frozen or frosted,” said Natorp's marketing director Ron Wilson. “So we take 'em back to the greenhouse.

        “But as soon as you have a sunny day, people want to get outside planting.”

        Or getting their Kings Island annual pass.

        Such is spring in Cincinnati.


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