By DON STINE
Area residents were prepping this week for snow, high winds, near blizzard conditions, and now they need to brace for what will probably some of the coldest weather in 10 years.
An arctic air mass moving into the region is expected to send temperatures plummeting Jan. 3 with temperatures expected to be near 10 degrees on Sat., Jan. 4- which means the snow is not going anywhere anytime soon.
“Bitter cold temperatures, that will be made worse by the wind chill factor, can be expected and widespread below-zero temperatures are likely by daybreak on Saturday,” said Richard Cuttrell, whose Tri-State Storm Watch on the Internet provides up-to-date information on severe weather conditions in this area.
Cuttrell, who is also Neptune’s township clerk and a trained meteorologist, said temperatures will most likely warm up to about 40 degrees on Sunday night and Monday and possibly bring to rain that will get rid of some of the snow.
An arctic air mass moving into the region is expected to send temperatures plummeting Jan. 3, with temperatures expected to be near 10 degrees. And although there will be a warming trend Mon., Jan. 6 Cuttrell predicts it get pretty cold again by the middle of next week.
As far as such a cold air mass moving into this area, Cuttrell said “it happens.”
“But this is going to be some of the coldest weather in about 10 years,” he said.
As far as future forecasts, Cuttrell said people just have to wait and see.
“We should get back to normal temperatures by the end of next week and then we’ll see what happens,” he said.
For Cuttrell’s area storm weather forecasts, go to www.TriStateStormWatch.com.
Sebastian Vaccaro, owner of the Hardware Store in Asbury Park at 428 Main St., said this kind of weather “is wonderful for business.”
“My business is very sad financially if it doesn’t snow or get cold,” he said.
Vaccaro said he was selling a lot of snow shovels, ice melting salts, snow blowers and materials to wraps pipes to keep them from freezing on Thursday.
“Business was extremely brisk Thursday morning,” he said.
He said he expects business to remain brisk during the snow and cold weather but that most people buy the items they need the day before the storm.
Snow blowers can range from $299 up to $ 2,250 with snow shovels ranging from $12.99 to $24.
Donna Logdon, owner of Sunset Landing restaurant in Asbury Park, said it “gets crazy busy” at her restaurant during cold weather events like this.
“I guess people just like the adventure of coming out in this weather. I expect a good weekend- all of the storm troopers will be out there in their SUVs,” she said.
Logdon said he has enough food to handle the crowd.
“We are OK with food. After all, I have been doing this for 50 years,” she said.
And the well-known Sunset Landing ducks and geese are okay with the weather too.
“They have webbed feet so they have natural snowshoes,” she said.
Bill Whitley, manager at the Barbaric Bean Coffee Roasters at 48 Main Ave. in Ocean Grove, said he has only been on the job for a few months and has never gone through a snow and cold-snap event like this before at the business.
“I am looking to see how it affects us one way or the other but it has not stopped people so far,” he said Thursday morning. “People are very dedicated coffee drinkers and they tend to brave it through to our business.”