Publisher Pen March 3, 2020

Our season is changing. The sun’s radiant heat is pushing back the snow banks. Our major streets are now snow and ice free. Creeks and small streams are again gurgling over rocks and sand bars. Driving over the causeway, one can see ice fishermen in portable canopies fishing along reefs and movement in the north tells you that snowmobilers are again moving across the frozen expanse of lake.
We will have several more snow falls. The sea gulls will return and then we will count down the remaining snow falls of the spring.
The snowbanks in our yards are diminishing. The downspouts of my eaves trough have melted out on the south side of my home. The water is running down my driveway out onto the street. The upper river was almost completely thawed and the still deep blue colour of the water gleams in the sunlight. The storm sewers that empty from the avenues and streets into the river are already flowing.
As I headed towards Thunder Bay Friday morning, caravans of trucks pulling snowmobiles on trailers were in front of me. The vehicles had US state plates and were bound for lakes in the Atikokan area, having skipped the turn-off to Dryden, Red Gut or Manitou.
Garden stores, hardware and grocery stores now display prominently packages of seeds for people to begin growing tomatoes, peppers and flowers for their gardens. In close proximity, germinating and planting soil is prominent. I noticed that a green house just off the highway between the Fort and Rainy River had smoke coming from a wood furnace that supplied heat to the green house. The greenhouses are coming to life as well.
Snowblowers are being replaced by lawn mowers in display rooms. Snow shovels are giving way to rakes and hoes. Christmas displays are all packed away making room for barbecues and accessories. Bikes and trikes are being uncrated and assembled for a whole new group of young riders. As the sidewalks melt out, the bikes and trikes will make their appearance in neighborhoods.
Fall and winter clothing has disappeared from most stores. Spring fashions are already on display along with women’s, men’s and children’s bathing suits.
The Sun now rises before 7:00 in the morning and sets just after 6:00 in the evening, giving us more and more than 11 hours of daylight. This Sunday at 2:00 a.m. we will move the clocks ahead one hour giving us more hours of daylight in the evening. Spring is on its way.

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