Valdosta Daily Times

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February 12, 2010

Let it snow

Rare snowfall coats Valdosta, other Ga. cities

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) — It took back-to-back blizzards to paralyze the nation’s capital, but in the Deep South it only took a couple of inches of snow.

Flakes were falling — or threatened — Friday from Texas to the Florida Panhandle and then up along the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina, bringing a rare white landscape to spots that haven’t seen snow in a decade or longer. The storm was crawling east out of Texas, where it left the Dallas area with more than a foot of snow, nearly 200 traffic accidents, thousands without power and hundreds of canceled flights.

Valdosta got its share of snowflakes starting around 7 p.m. Reports of snow sticking to the ground came from Tifton, Moultrie and Cairo.

Just the anticipation of an inch of snow was enough to close schools in the Florida Panhandle, while classes also were canceled in parts of Alabama. Nearly two-dozen school districts closed across Georgia because of the snow forecast.

In Century, about 40 miles north of Pensacola, Fla., 44-year-old Steve Pace scraped some snow from the hood of his truck and formed a snowball to throw at his 6-year-old grandson, Kaleb. It only snowed for about 10 minutes before giving way to rain again, but it was enough for Kaleb.

“I’ve only ever seen snow on TV till now,” Kaleb said, smiling.

Snow was still coming down Friday morning in southwest Alabama, with as much as 2 inches already on the ground, said George T. Moss, owner of the 15-room Timberland Motel in Chatom, about 60 miles north of Mobile.

“I’m sitting here looking out over my property, 30 or 40 acres, looking at ponds and my property, a deer. It’s just real pretty,” he said.

The southern Alabama city of Andalusia had recorded its largest snowfall since 1973 — 2 inches as of Friday morning. The city of 8,800 near the Florida line was getting ready to close its streets because of snow, which no one could remember happening before, said city building inspector Micah Blair.

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