Cold and wet spring weather impacts park openings

Published: Apr. 26, 2023 at 10:32 PM CDT
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Given how much rain and cold there’s been, Rochester’s parks have experienced some delays in openings this season.

KTTC spoke with City Parks and Rec, Ben Boldt, as well as the head golf pro at Northern Hills, Mike Manahan. Both said things are moving slower than usual, but as it is still early in the season, they are able to manage.

On Wednesday, Manahan said all tee times were booked at Northern Hills.

“We’ve been booked from 12 o’clock this afternoon to 6:30 tonight.” Manahan said. “It was a late spring to start, and then the constant rain. We just couldn’t get things open in time.”

Even with all the disruptions, Manahan says the course’s opening date wasn’t much different from years past.

“We’re very lucky, we bank on luck a lot,” Manahan said.

Northern Hills is normally the last city course to open, so the late opening is not uncommon, but after chatting with the city Parks and Rec, they sat the weather has moved back several openings and activities that would normally take place. The city’s next deadline before May is getting the rest of park amenities open.

“We’ve certainly had holdups in the sports field area with cancellations due to weather or fields not being ready.” Boldt said. “Picnic shelters and other park amenities really open in early May, so we’re kind of scrambling, working hard to get that ready so those things will be ready to open next week.”