Oh snap! Cold, snow keep Akron’s shoe from dropping, but Wobbly Bob stands tall

By on January 3, 2018

Wobbly Bob made his customary descent from the third floor of Reamstown’s Union Barrel Works Sunday night to ring in the New Year, but frigid temperatures put the kibosh on Akron’s Shoe-Drop.

Kim Weaver, one of Union Barrel’s barkeeps, told The Review on Tuesday morning that their Sunday night crowd was down a bit from last year – about 75 to ring in 2018 as opposed to the 100-plus that helped usher in 2017 – but they braved the single digit freeze to cheer on the patriotically garbed Wobbly Bob until his feet touched the ground, which is when many of the celebrants moved inside, waiting in comfort as the clock ticked down to midnight.

Reamstown’s festivities began earlier in the evening with a free community bingo night at the Reamstown Fire Hall. Reamstown Historical Society President Ken McCrea said about 135 people showed up to play bingo, competing for prizes donated by local businesses. There was no charge for the event. The fire company sold refreshments, with profits benefiting the fire company. McCrea said the game broke up about 11:30 p.m. to give people time to go to the Wobby Bob barrel event.

Akron Mayor John McBeth said the freeze was too deep for the town’s totally out-of-doors celebration. He and his committee of eight volunteers were also concerned about the hazard that could have been presented when hundreds of feet tramped over the snow cover at the Broad Street playground. McBeth said their fear was that the footing would be so slippery that people would fall.

This was the first time since the Shoe-Drop began that weather caused a cancellation, McBeth said. It was cancelled once before because of a lack of volunteers, he added, but that was not a problem this year.

Forecast: Bitter coldsnap will continue

The ongoing frigid temperatures might be considered as incredibly unseasonable, while being thrown into another week of below freezing weather.

According to Millersville University Meteorolgist Eric Horst’s Twitter, “I’ve been forecasting for 35 years, and I believe I’ve issued an as-cold or colder 7-day outlook than this on only four occasions; the 3rd week of Jan. 1984, the 3rd week of Dec. 1989, the 3rd week of Jan. 1994, and the 4th week of Jan. 2014.”

As the week ends, it is expected that the area will be hit with harsh wind chills that hold dangerous sub-zero temperatures, so it’s best to break out all of those extra hats and scarves and think warm thoughts!

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