Southern Vermont escapes worst of ice storm - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Southern Vermont escapes worst of ice storm

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RUTLAND, Vt. -

Rutland's significantly warmer temperatures made outdoor activities a great Christmas Eve choice for some families.

"You can do a lot of stuff like make snowballs and make snowmen and an igloo," said Erik Fairbrother Frank of Rutland.

Erik Fairbrother Frank says winter is a great time to be outside. Frank and his grandfather, Thomas Frank, spent Christmas Eve morning on a story walk adventure at Rutland's Giorgetti Park.

"It was nice the way they had the storybook pages all along the way and I could read it to him, as we went by," Thomas Frank said.

Outdoor enthusiasts like the Franks enjoyed following pages of the wintertime children's book "The Fiddler of the North."

"Everybody tends to be thinking about being inside in the winter, so we are always trying to think about how do we get people outside and active in the winter, because as we know, in Vermont, winter is long," said Cindi Wight of the Rutland Recreation and Parks Department.

Although Rutland didn't get as heavily slammed by the ice storm as northern Vermont, they still felt the effects. The story walk was originally planned to go through the park's trail system. But park officials said the trails were too icy, so they had to move locations.

"I know it's very icy up there. It's dangerous to go on the trails, but it was nice they had it out here on the ball field," Thomas Frank said.

Visitors say combining outdoor activities with literacy is a great way to use the park.

"In the summer we've got mountain biking at Pine Hill Park and there's a lot of soccer games and baseball games that play here. So, this is a neat way to come out on a cold winter day, maybe get some families mingling, maybe see some people you would otherwise miss at the Christmas season," said William Notte of Rutland.

Event organizers say the story walk is one of many initiatives to get people using the park during the winter.

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