Snow brings fun and headaches to E. Texas

By Donna McCollum - bio | email

NACOGDOCHES (KTRE) - Frame the snapshot of your snow picture just right and it could fool someone into thinking it's the Northeast or Midwest, but it's really a blanket of snow in East Texas.

A woman called "nana" by children laughed like a child as she sled down a slope at the SFA football field. That's where university students and families spent their snow day. It was a winter playground for snowball fights, snowman building and lots of sledding.

Adanna Oparh laughed. The student's family is contending with 10 feet of snow in Washington D.C. She couldn't wait to tell them about the four to eight inches east Texas got.

"I sent them a picture and I was like, snow in Texas with a question mark. They haven't texted me back," Oparh said.

Unlike D.C. the roads are passable here. Motorists drove around looking at the sights. Emergency responders caution that the road surface conditions are likely to worsen tonight and into tomorrow morning. Melting snow may re-freeze and pose an ice threat. Motorists are advised to avoid driving after dark and in the early morning hours.

Others enjoyed the view by walking neighborhood streets. From her baby stroller, toddler Haley Davis learned a new word. "It's snow," she said over and over again.

Snow brings out the kid in everyone. Chuck Page ditched work and stayed home to play with the kids. He pulled together a very large middle for a snowman.  "Pretty good for an old man, isn't it," he bragged. Trouble is, it was so large he and the kids couldn't lift it up on the snowman base.

The snow is pretty, fun and exciting for a lot of people, but for some, it's an inconvenience when the power goes off. Generators are pulled out as thousands of residents in Nacogdoches, Panola and Shelby county lost power beginning at four this morning.

"We're on TXU here and at my shop, Deep East Texas and they're both off," shared Mitch Holland, an Appleby resident.

Around 40 contract crews from other parts are helping out the Deep East Texas Cooperative. "We're having trouble getting into the woods where the breaks are occurring," Larry Warren, director of the coop explained. "We want to have everyone on by tonight, but we can't make a promise. We're telling customers they may want to find a warm place to spend the night."

Weighted down tree limbs give crews a fit. For Esther Jones the sight warms her heart. "It was beautiful. God gave us a pretty picture this morning," said Jones who came out to take a few pictures.

A warming center was offered at the rec center, but there were few takers. "I think they're probably out having fun in the snow," Kathy Joslyn, recreation director said.

She was right. A group of kids spent most of the morning building a snowman. "We have lemon eyes, the original carrot nose, the banana peel mouth and the football helmet," illustrated one of the excited builders.

Enjoy a February snow while you can. It doesn't last long. Blooming jonquils remind us spring will be here in just five weeks.

According to Nacogdoches County Commissioner Jim Elder, about 5,000 homes were without power in the county. Sheriff Thomas Kerss asked that anyone who needed a shelter call the sheriff's office at 936-560-7793 for assistance.

A representative said about 2,000 Deep East Texas Electric Cooperative customers in Nacogdoches, Panola and Shelby Counties are without power. He said the coop hopes to have their power restored tonight, but customers should be prepared to find a warm shelter Friday night.

About 1,000 homes were without power in Angelina County as of 4 p.m., said David Collier a spokesman with Oncor.

Nacogdoches Police covered 14 minor traffic accidents Thursday night while Lufkin Police responded to 13.

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