Harford kids take to the hills with sleds; parents relax

Children in Harford County Wednesday got to enjoy the deep, powdery snow that settled over the area the day before.

"Any day off from school is pretty good," said David Fetcho, 13, who was sledding with his friends down a steep hill on the campus of the John Carroll School in Bel Air Wednesday afternoon.

David, an eighth-grader at St. Margaret School in Bel Air, was sledding with Tucker Bailey, also 13 and an eighth-grader at St. Margaret, and with Garrett Hanley, 13, a seventh-grader at Bel Air Middle School.

They made their way down the hill around the John Carroll logo and the hedges surrounding it, which can be seen from Route 22. A massive figure of Jesus Christ on the cross stands at the top of the hill, just a few yards from where they began their descent.

The boys had been sledding since 10 a.m. and were still at it around 1:15 p.m. The snow was deep, about 8 inches, dry and powdery.

"It's steep, the soft snow," David said when asked what made the sledding so good at this location on Wednesday.

The three were bundled up in knit caps, heavy coats and face masks, and said the cold did not bother them.

"I like the cold a lot," Garrett said.

Tucker's mother, Ronnie Bailey, and sister, Eve, arrived around 1:30 p.m. to pick up the boys.

They were also enjoying the day.

"Oh my God, I love it," Ronnie Bailey, a Bel Air resident, said. "I love it! I love it! I love it! It just makes everybody feel good... it makes everybody stay home for a day and relax."

Eve, a 15-year-old sophomore at John Carroll, enjoyed the visual aspects of the snow.

"I like [to see] it in the trees," she said.

Public schools in Harford were already scheduled to be off Tuesday and Wednesday for teacher professional development. The daylong snow Tuesday led to early closures at many businesses and offices around Bel Air and elsewhere in the county. Some places, including courts and county government, opened late on Wednesday morning.

Snowy days have a rhythm all their own, not just for kinds, but for businesses, as well.

John Sofia, general manager of the Season's Pizza restaurant in the Festival at Bel Air shopping center, said foot traffic at the restaurant gave way to a greater number of orders for delivery.

He said most of the orders were for "personal" orders made by people wanting a hot meal, rather than a large spread.

Nine times out of 10, "people were calling to see if I was open," he said Wednesday.

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