It’s been spring for nearly one month now. It’s also a week after the 45th anniversary of the historic snow storm that left more than 20 inches on some Iowa roadways, and forced several people to take up shelter at the Becker residence north of Garrison — an event which those people would remember for decades and commemorate with occasional reunions.

Today, there is not a 2o-inch blizzard in the forecast, but Jason Hicok’s Vinton weather page is full of red warnings from the National Weather service, which predicts sleet freezing rain and up to 3-6 inches of snow in Benton County (and up to 8 or more inches north of Highway 20).

Today became a “snow day” for Vinton-Shellsburg schools, and Herb decided to pull his garbage trucks off the streets, delaying Vinton pick-up for one day this week.

One of the students in the Tilford second grade classroom of Becky Sturtz wrote Mother Nature a letter, encouraging her to get more sleep, and drink less cappuccino, so he can go camping, like in the summer (and like many often can in normal spring weather).

Mrs.  Sturtz said the students had fun expressing their disappointment in the weather to the personified Mother Nature.

“We just wrote letters with messages like, ‘What’s wrong this year? Why are

you being cranky? I wish you could be in a better mood so we could go outside in the sunshine. Maybe you should go to bed earlier, etc., says the teacher. “We just wrote silly and funny letters and sent them home to give parents a laugh. The kids loved it.”


The National Weather Service does predict the snow will be short-lived, and temperatures will be a more seasonal 50-60 in a few days.

The areas in pink on this NWS map indicate that Benton County is one of several under a winter weather warning today.

In case you haven’t read enough of the not-so-funny weather news, here is the entire National Weather Service warning:

Winter Storm Warning

National Weather Service Quad Cities IA IL
957 PM CDT Tue Apr 17 2018

...Winter Storm to Impact the area Wednesday...

A potent late season winter storm will bring a wintry mix of freezing rain and sleet to the area beginning early Wednesday
morning. The wintry mix will change over to accumulating snow by early Wednesday afternoon. The snow may become heavy at times
with snowfall rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour. Travel is expected to become hazardous with the ice and snow producing slick roads.
Gusty winds combined with the falling snow may sharply reduce visibility at times.

Affected counties: Buchanan-Delaware-Benton-Linn-
Including the cities of Independence, Manchester, Vinton, and Cedar Rapids


* WHAT...Heavy mixed precipitation expected. Total snow
  accumulations of 3 to 6 inches, with localized amounts up to 8
  inches north of highway 20. Ice accumulations up to one tenth of
  an inch are possible.

* WHERE...Buchanan, Delaware, Benton and Linn Counties.

* WHEN...Precipitation starting between 6 AM and 9 AM, then
  lasting into the evening.

* ADDITIONAL DETAILS...Plan on difficult travel conditions. Expect
  significant reductions in visibility at times with snowfall
  rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour possible.


A Winter Storm Warning means significant amounts of snow, sleet
and ice will make travel very hazardous or impossible. Additional
information can be found at