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It was nice while it lasted…

Warm weather a brief respite for area

Joe McIntyre/staff photographer

Golfers, from left, Tony Natoli, Dana Decker and Pat O’Donnell cast long winter shadows Wednesday on the 18th hole of Walden Oaks Country Club in Cortlandville.

CORTLANDVILLE — Sun shining and near 70 degrees is how people in Cortland County started their Wednesday. It was a glimpse of spring which lasted until early afternoon. With the beautiful weather, people were out walking their dogs, riding bikes and even playing golf.

Marcus Bernardo, general manager at Walden Oaks Country Club in Cortlandville, said the golf course had been open since Tuesday. The golf course hopes to be open until next Tuesday, Bernardo said. “All depends on the weather.” Wednesday saw a high of 68 degrees in Cortland County, according to the National Weather Service in Binghamton.

On Wednesday morning at Walden Oaks a light breeze filled the air. Tony Natoli, Pat O’Donnell and Dana Decker gathered for some friendly competition. “It (the weather) gives you a boost,” O’Donnell said.

The three men had already played through a couple of the holes at the course. Only holes 1, 2, 9 and 13 through 18 were open, Decker said. Getting out was more than just friendly sport. O’Donnell said the winter has been long, and with cabin fever setting in, the break in the weather was nice.

“It’s nice to have a little vacation,” he said. It wasn’t the earliest the trio has played. Natoli said the group would take vacations in the past to Myrtle Beach.

Overall, the weather probably puts people in a better mood, O’Donnell said. They get outside and get fresh air.

“It’s good for everybody,” he said.

Natoli and O’Donnell saw the warm temperatures as a nice mid-winter’s break. “Whether it’s one day or one week,” O’Donnell said.

This was the second February in a row that Walden Oaks has opened early, Bernardo said. “We’re tending to open earlier,” he said. “Winters haven’t been as bad.”

On Wednesday, the golf course was a buzz. “It’s been very busy,” Bernardo said.

He said he wished he could have taken to the fairways but he was working.

By 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, the temperature had dropped to 45 degrees. By around 2 p.m. rain had moved in.

For the remainder of the week, temperatures will bounce around. For today, a high near 34 degrees with a mixture of snow, sleet and rain throughout the day, according to the Weather Service.A winter weather advisory is in effect until 6 p.m. today. The Weather Service expects mixed precipitation with total snow accumulations of 3 to 5 inches and ice accumulations of a coating to one tenth of an inch.

Friday temperatures are expected to peak near 41 degrees, likely following sleet.

By Sunday, the Weather Service expects a high near 48 degrees. Rain is likely all weekend.

Greg Zacek was also at Walden Oaks on Wednesday getting some golf time in before going to work at Cargill’s Cayuga Salt Mine in Lansing where he works the second shift. Zacek said with the weather he figured he’d be outside.

“Why not, it’s almost 70 in February,” he said.

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