COVENTRY TOWNSHIP: Like the buzzards’ annual return to Hinckley every March, another sure sign of spring is the opening of a popular ice cream stand.
Even with 3 to 6 inches of snow in the forecast through tonight, 7-year-old Stella Cundiff and her mother, Jodie Bush, were ready for their first taste of a Pav’s Creamery cone.
Saturday was, after all, the first day of March, and it’s the third year in a row the mother and child were first in line as the landmark at 3769 Manchester Road opened for another season in Portage Lakes.
“I had anxiety coming here,” said Bush, a Barberton High School teacher.
The store first opened in 1952 and was originally called Tasty Freeze. It has been known as Pav’s for 45 years.
While some predictions of snowfall initially called for 10 inches to a foot or more this weekend, Saturday afternoon saw temperatures in the mid-40s. Weather experts have now scaled back their ominous predictions.
Ice cream store owner Michelle Micochero said she wants to believe that March will follow the fabled “in like a lion, out like a lamb” lore.
“We are only hoping,” she said.
The store stays open until the end of October, and this July a second Pav’s store will open on Massillon Road in Green.
“Lots of people come here on opening day,” Micochero said. “It’s a tradition.”
Fans who work at the nearby Buckeye Veterinary Clinic were among the first customers of the season.
Terry Gaskell-Kasen, 32, of Canton, said he really didn’t have a problem with the winter.
“I’m not a winter person, but it is Ohio,” he said.
Erin Redman, 37, of Stow, who works with Gaskell-Kasen, said she is pretending that winter is over now that Pav’s has opened once again.
“I am from Michigan and I lived in Colorado, so I love the snow,” she said, eating her first ice cream of 2014. “It doesn’t bother me.”
The weather will remain cold following the snowfall tonight and into Tuesday morning. Daytime highs, according to the National Weather Service, call for 22 degrees today, 19 on Monday, and the low 20s on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Low temperatures during the next three nights will dip below 10 degrees. Wednesday night will warm up a bit with an overnight low of about 24 degrees.
The temperature, the Weather Service said, should climb to a high of about 39 degrees on Friday.
And as sure as the buzzards’ return March 15, Pav’s will be open.
“It’s a sure sign of spring,” Micochero said.
Jim Carney can be reached at 330-996-3576 or email@example.com.