The unsually warm weather sent people to campgrounds, parks and garden centers over the long weekend after being cooped up inside as the winter cold seeped into March and April.
Despite a cold and wet spring, temperatures this week have been hovering 10 to 12 degrees above the seasonal average of 74, according to the National Weather Service in Albany.
While state parks normally see increased attendance in March and April as the weather warms up, that shift didn’t occur until about two weeks ago when the weather finally turned, said Bob Kuhn, assistant regional manager of the Saratoga and Capital Region state parks.
“My general impression was we were up this year [in attendance] because we had such a nice three-day weekend,” Kuhn said.
The campground at Moreau Lake State Park was completely booked for all three nights, Kuhn said.
While some enjoyed camping, others began their summer gardens with a trip to local flower stores because fear of flower-killing frost was eradicated between the warm weather and Memorial Day weekend, the tradional start to the growing season in the Northeast.
Although many of these gardeners tend to start picking out popular flower choices such as impatiens or geraniums in the beginning of May, the rain held them back.
People generally don’t want to be out gardening in the rain and the rain causes muddy gardens, said Spencer Skoda, the plant buyer for Hewitt’s garden stores, based in Scotia.
The nice weather included four straight days of almost perfect weather and droves of people began buying flowers. Hewitt’s had a good turnout and expects that to continue through next weekend with the warm weather.
“People are out and planting again. Weather and gardens go hand in hand,” Skoda said.
While the sun is providing a perfect growing season for flowers, homeowners are looking to cool down the insides of their houses.
“I was open Monday, and pretty much all I sold was air conditoners,” said Anthony Holben, sales manager of Roy Matthews TV & Appliance in Scotia.
However, this is only the first run of hot weather, and usually they usually sell more air conditioners during the second.
“People put up with the first one,” Holben said. “But the second one, they say ‘forget it.’ ”
Last year Holben sold all of his air conditoners and had people begging him to find more, and he hopes to do that again.
The warm weather is expected to continue this week right through the coming weekend, when highs will be around 80.
Categories: Schenectady County