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Rain finally!

Mother Nature gets wet and wild

Mother Nature gets wet and wild

October 08, 2005|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

andrews@herald-mail.com

More than 4 inches of rain fell on Hagerstown on Friday, topping the city's total for the previous 11 weeks combined.

This year's sunny, dry summer gave way to more of the same at the onset of fall. But, on Friday, the rainlessness ended.

"Our tomatoes wish it came a while ago," Marilyn Wilkinson of Berkeley Springs, W.Va., said as she browsed in the home garden section at Lowe's on Wesel Boulevard.

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Lorraine Milroth said the Kentucky bluegrass sod at her Needmore, Pa., home turned brown. And she had new Leyland cypress and blue spruce trees.

"Up to this point, I couldn't plant bulbs," she said, referring to daffodils, which were on her shopping list.

Tri-State gardeners should be ready for more, according to the National Weather Service's forecast for Washington County and West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle.

Today: rain, mostly in the morning

Sunday: mostly cloudy, with a 30 percent chance of showers

Monday: mostly cloudy, with a 30 percent chance of rain

Tuesday: partly cloudy, again with a 30 percent chance of showers

Wednesday, Thursday and Friday: partly cloudy

As good as Friday's daylong soaking rain was for things that grow, it left event planners with choices to make.

"Rain or shine," declared those organizing the Apple Butter Festival in Berkeley Springs, band festivals in Hagerstown and Waynesboro, Pa. and today's "Grace Under Fire" Civil War history event in Williamsport.

Some of "Grace Under Fire" has been reconfigured, but the heart of it - a re-enactment of Brig. Gen. John Imboden's mass evacuation of Confederate soldiers - will carry on as planned.

Organizer Richard Lank noted that it rained hard when Imboden led the 1863 retreat from Gettysburg. "Maybe this is just part of the karma," he said Friday.

The threatening weather was too much for the City of Hagerstown, which postponed today's Harvest Hoedown and Community Yard Sale at Fairgrounds Park. City Public Information Manager Karen Giffin said it's supposed to be windy today, which isn't good for people in pop-up tents.

The hoedown and yard sale are expected to be held next Saturday.

Several Tri-State football games scheduled for Friday were postponed until today or Monday.

The Washington County Board of Education said the Fairview Bike Hike that was to be held today will be held next Saturday instead.

Hagerstown weather observer Greg Keefer's Web site says September 2005 - during which .18 inches of rain fell - was the driest in the more than 100 years records have been kept.

It was also the third-driest of any month during that time.

There was no measurable rain for the first 25 days of September.

As of 9:30 p.m. Friday, 4.15 inches of rain had dropped in Hagerstown, the Web site said.

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