Winter is a long season in Minnesota. It usually starts to get cold in early November. By early December, there's snow on the ground. The snow remains until March or April. On average, winter weather lasts for about five months. But is this a bad thing? Many Minnesotans love the long winter and all the snow. Let me tell you why.
First of all, snow is a beautiful thing. It's soft, it reflects light, and it brightens the long, dark nights of winter, especially when the moon is out. Like magic, snow falls from the sky. It's beautiful. Everything is quiet. It's also fun to play in the snow. You can make a snowman, build a snow fort, or have a snowball fight with your friends. If there are any hills where you live, you can go sledding, skiing, or snowboarding. Ice rinks are also easy to find, so skating and hockey are popular sports in Minnesota.
There are several winter events. In St. Paul, there's the Winter Carnival and Crashed Ice. In Minneapolis, there's the city of Lakes Loppet Ski Festival. In fact, you can go skiing just about anywhere. The ski resorts located on the small mountains near Lake Superior are especially nice. For people who like speed, there are snowmobiles, and for people who like animals, there's dog sledding. The lakes are dotted with fishing shacks where people ice fish and men go to get away from their wives.
Many of the creepy, crawly creatures that people have to deal with in warm climates are absent in cold places. If you don't like flies and mosquitos, there's no need to worry about them in the winter. They either die or hibernate in the ground. There are no snakes, no lizards, and rodents have a hard time finding food, so many of them also die in the winter. If winter weather isn't harsh enough, the rabbit population explodes in the spring, so gardeners hope for a really cold winter.
Staying inside your home on a cold winter day is yet another benefit of the season. Families come together in the evening for long dinners and conversations about the events of the day. Children play board games with their parents, and many people have extra time to read. Libraries and books stores are very busy at this time of year.
Perhaps the best thing to do in the winter is to eat all of the delicious things that come out of an oven. In the summer, the use of the oven is limited by the extreme heat, so winter becomes the baking season. Bread, muffins, cookies, cake, and pies are always available in northern homes. The extra heat from the oven helps heat the home, so it makes sense to bake as much as possible.
Winter is over when the days begin to lengthen and the snow melts. Last year, the snow finally left in May. It was another long winter. But that's okay for people who love the season. In Minnesota, it's a short wait before the snow and the ice return.
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Now you try it. Read the paragraph above. If you have a microphone, you can record your voice.