It's that time of the year again...time to remind you of our winter weather policies. I always seem to put this off until a day like today; when I end up typing this from my dinning room while the dog snores on the sofa and the scene through the window looks like a snow globe.
1. If BOTH Butler and Seneca Valley School districts have closed due to precipitation, Darn Yarn is closed.
2. If only one is closed or delayed, due to precipitation, we will likely open about and hour late.
3. If either is closed due to low temperatures, we will be open as scheduled.
When in doubt, call the shop or check social media.
This is always a tough thing for me, because let's be honest, often the roads end up being fine by early/mid afternoon. But, at the same time, many of you would rather stay inside and work with your stash than go out when the weather is iffy or there's a good chance that the roads are bad. And I can't blame you. After all, my job is to find the coziest yarn and fiber goodies for you and to keep you well supplied for days like today. Also, if you have school aged kiddos at home, then you've got a full house during snow days, and you're not likely to head out for supplies for your next project.
One thing that makes this decision a tough one for me is that I live far enough away, just under 20 miles, that the drive to or from the shop can get iffy, long, and stressful, if somewhere along the way the weather is really yucky. And oddly, with the topography around here, the weather I get at home could be completely different than the weather at the shop, and this can also make the decision to close difficult - is it nice there? Can I drive out of it, or will it follow me? What happens in the middle? There was one storm last year that, in a very short time frame, dumped about 4" of snow along with sleet in Butler. It caused a large number of accidents, wires were down and power out, school closed; but there wasn't even a dusting in Evans City or Harmony?! It's those storms that make the decision to close or delay opening so difficult for me.
I'm not a bad driver, as a matter of fact, not to brag, but I've been known to "rock" a VW out of a few snow banks or ice patches (my previous job's parking lot was not well maintained, partially due to the difficulty of its location in an open field). If you aren't familiar with Volkswagen's transmission and gearing, first and reverse are in the same location in the gearbox. While I have confidence in my skills, what I don't have is confidence in my own vision. I can no longer see well during most forms of precipitation, and low light conditions. And being as I can only drive as fast as I can see... driving in "weather" can be nerve wracking. I'll admit that. I don't even make a good passenger during precipitation, for the same reason.
Personally I want to know why no one uses snow fences?! Is it a regional thing, or do people just not use them anymore? They were everywhere when I was growing up in Eastern PA, and they really do work! Because of the number of hills and dales, valleys and peaks around here, a few well placed ugly orange fences really could help with winter weather road maintenance. But that's an aside that's neither here nor there.
Back to the issue at hand: Darn Yarn's winter weather policy. Posted above, I tried to make the policy such that there are basic guidelines that seem to make sense. But our policy often comes down to a judgement call on my part (because it's not often that both districts close), and the belief that while running out of yarn is frustrating, when the weather is bad, it's not worth the risk to you (or me) of driving in bad conditions just for one more skein. Maybe if I lived closer and could just shuffle my way over in great big mukluks, but I can't ...
So to repeat, if Butler AND Seneca Valley are closed due to precipitation, we will be closed too. If only one is closed, or there are delays (again, due to precipitation), it's a likely we will open about an hour late - in order to give the road crews time to work and the school busses and everyone else running late due to the delay, the chance to get where they are going first. If the schools are closed or delayed due to temperatures, we're open as usual - unless there are extenuating circumstances, like pipes freezing at the shop. (It's happened. Which is why we mention it.)
I do try to post, in a timely manner, that we are closed or delayed. Check Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or Ravelry. But if in doubt, call the shop. If I don't answer the phone or call you back quickly, we're closed.
That being said, enjoy your winter wonderland. If you love the snow, get out and enjoy it while wearing something warm, wooly, and handmade. If you don't love the snow, stay indoors and make something warm and wooly to share with those who do love the snow.