Among Baltimore's humans and animals, reaction to snowfall is mixed

Not all of the animals at the Maryland Zoo like the snow.

The South African penguins preferred to stay indoors, according to zoo spokeswoman Jane Ballentine. “It’s not their favorite,” she said.

But Anoki the polar bear basked in the powder.

On Thursday, the Maryland Zoo posted a video to Twitter of Anoki playing in snow, with “her rolly polly polar bear antics.”

But across the city, reactions to the white stuff were mixed, with some celebrating an unexpected day off and others ruing called-off travel plans. Much of the city was closed by the fourth nor’easter storm to hit the East Coast in three weeks.

“I want to divorce winter,” said Kim Wilkins, who was waiting for the bus home from a conference she was attending downtown. Her car was too iced over to drive.This week saw the most snow the city has seen winter — never mind that it’s technically already spring.

As the snowfall dissipated into midafternoon flurries, epidemiologist Claire Broome wheeled her suitcase to her hotel near the Inner Harbor. The California native was in town for a meeting.

“I was frantically texting pictures of all the snow-covered trees to my family and friends,” she said, “saying ‘yikes.’”

But she was one of the lucky travelers whose plans weren’t interrupted by the weather. BWI Airport and other airports experienced widespread cancellations, said BWI Airport spokesman Jonathan Dean.

In front of the World Trade building, Rob Dean of Pigtown was directing his staff as they shoveled the walkways outside.

“Our main responsibility is to get the building ready for tomorrow,” he said. That meant constantly shoveling the heavy accumulation and spreading snow melt and salt on surfaces.

“If one person slips — it’s a building full of lawyers,” he said.

Near Camden Yards, Kyle Polasko sat at the bar at Pickles, where he was enjoying an afternoon pint with his bar buddy Alex Wilson. Both had the afternoon off and made a beeline for their favorite dive.

“I thought it was gonna be a party,” said Polasko, surveying the scene. “I was a little disappointed.”

As always, few celebrated the snowfall like the area’s students.

Katherine Edwards, a senior at Loyola University Maryland, and her friends used their day off from class to build an 8-foot tall snowman who they named “Iggy,” after the school’s mascot. Why so big? “Go big or go home,” said Edwards, a psychology major.

ctkacik@baltsun.com

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