The Collegian
Friday, June 21, 2024

First snowfall of the semester delays university opening

Sunday's isolated snowstorm interrupted the unseasonably warm Richmond winter. Students on campus took advantage of the weather as an opportunity to play outdoors.

"I frolicked so hard," freshman Mayer Villar said. "We had a snowball fight, built snow men, and made snow angels - all the usual snow activities." Those activities could be seen repeatedly around campus on Sunday and Monday.

Junior Alexis Constantine said people were sledding down the hill in front of Boatwright Memorial Library.

"We used trays," freshman Julie Du Pont said of her sledding excursion, "and some people even used the wet floor signs."

Senior Nick Annichiarico said he was glad to have one day of snow.

Snowfall this close to spring break may have been seen as a negative for some students, but most seemed happy to venture outdoors in snow amid the unseasonably warm February.

"First I screamed really loudly," freshman Molly Mepyans said. "I jumped up and down, I ran in circles and I ran outside and lay in the snow. I became one with the snow. Then I made a snowman with my friends, but then the snowplow knocked it over. I tried to take some snow in with me but it melted."

The temperature remained above freezing throughout the night, melting the winter wonderland to a sloshy covering by Monday morning. An email from University Communications announced that the university would not open until 9:30 a.m. on Monday, which was President's Day.

Many students said they were unsure as to whether 8 and 9 a.m. classes had been pushed to 9:30 a.m., or if the schedule had cut off the morning entirely. No clarification message followed the first announcement.

The inclement weather hotline provided by the university website only repeated the email, which an upperclassman said that he had never before encountered.

Some students found the morning schedule ended up being dependent on their professors. "My professor emailed us at 9:15 a.m. to say class was cancelled," freshman Chloe Zung said. Other students received emails from their professors saying that they were still to meet at 9 a.m.

Roads and pathways were salted for safe travel throughout the Sunday night and into Monday. There were no reports of weather-related injury or car accidents on campus.

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Campus businesses appeared to avoid any problems with the weather. ETC cashier Brian Sculthore said even though the store closed at 9:30 last night, sales were just as strong as any other day. A UR Alert message of early closings was sent out Sunday evening during snowfall.

Contact reporter Caroline Merritt at

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