Students take advantage of fleeting 80-degree weather

Sammy Caiola

Whether throwing frisbees, climbing trees, cooling off or hitting the books, students and Evanston residents packed the Lakefill Sunday in celebration of an 80-degree day after a long, cold winter.

Students walked campus in shorts and sundresses, pleasantly surprised by the temperature jump after a chilly Friday and Saturday.

“I felt amazing when I stepped outside this morning, like I was wearing too many clothes and had to change,” said Elisabeth Wojcik, a Weinberg sophomore.

The warm weather was a one-day occurrence, though, said Bill Nelson, the observation program leader with the National Weather Service. Nelson said the temperature will drop to 55 degrees Monday, and northern Illinois is currently at slight risk area for severe weather, which could include winds greater than 55 mph.

“Normal temperature at this time of the year is mid-50s, but a warm front has brought in the gulf moisture along with the warmer temperatures,” Nelson said.

But students didn’t let the dismal forecast prohibit them from stealing a few hours in the sun. While many lay on blankets and studied in the good weather, some found more creative ways to spend the afternoon.

Weinberg freshman Matt McDonald was one of several students “slacklining,” an activity that involves stringing a chord between two trees and trying to walk across it. McDonald said he arrived at the Lakefill noon Friday and jumped in the lake.

“I didn’t do work all week, and today was supposed to be the day, ” McDonald said. “But after four months of freezing, I have to take advantage of this.”

Weinberg sophomore Eric Johnson said he enjoys playing his guitar in nature because it inspires his music.

“My day is going deliciously,” Johnson said. “I have my guitar and I’m out on the Lakefill, and it’s 80 degrees and the fish are jumping. This is the first time I’ve gotten to do this all year.”

Some students took the day of fun to a whole new level and chose to lounge in a tree rather than on the ground. McCormick junior Aaron Horowitz and Weinberg senior Lizzy Rodkin said it offered a relaxing and scenic perch.

“It’s actually insanely comfortable,” Rodkin said. “You can feel the wind better up here.”