EUGENE, Ore — About 15 trees came down at the University of Oregon; but that didn’t keep students home from classes.
Now cleanup crews and students are left navigating the mess.
Whatever students’ initial reaction was to Wednesday’s snowstorm, University of Oregon visitors, employees and students are still in awe of it a day later.
“I think the best part is that it was just such a surprise and we weren’t expecting it at all. So waking up and looking out the window and just seeing all the white, it was great,” said UO Freshman Megan Dougherty.
“I was shocked. Shocked. I grew up around here and we used to get this kind of snow when I was little, in the winter. At the latest, early February; but never at the end of March!” said University of Oregon Alumni Sarah Gahagan.
“It’s just so beautiful and cold, but very nice,” said LCC Sophomore Brittany Anderson.
But, nice is not how University Administrators would describe the snow that brought down more than a dozen trees all over campus.
“The conditions were sloppy, but they weren’t particularly dangerous. The thing that was the danger was the potential falling limbs and falling trees,” said UO Spokesman Phil Weiler.
That didn’t force the University to close Wednesday; it just delayed classes a few hours.
This isn’t the first time the University of Oregon toughed it out in nasty weather, as former students will tell you.
“There were sheets of ice one time this thick and I felt like I needed golf spikes to walk around campus. And they didn’t close at that point,” said Sarah Gahagan.
Administrators say that’s because more than 4,000 students live on campus.
“We need to make sure that they’re fed. That the power and the heat is on. So it’s not like we could just say, ‘We’re closing. Everyone go home’ because this is their home. This is where the students live,” said Phil Weiler.
So, it’ll take more than a half-a-foot of snow, and 15 downed trees to keep students out of finals.
“By and large, we really try to keep operations running if we can, if it’s safe to do so,” said Phil Weiler.
University crews will work on cutting up the trees and limbs over the next few days to clean up Wednesday’s mess.